Colors: Red and White
Head Coach: Andy Welsh (2nd season)
2015 record: 6-3 (lost to Neligh-Oakdale in first round of playoffs)
Returning Starters: 5 offense 5 defense
After turning things around in 2015, the Pender Pendragons are back for more in 2016 as they hope to be good again.
Senior QB Dylan Roth (6’0, 170) returns for Pender as does Senior James Bensen (5’10, 195),
Roth threw for 714 yards and 9 TD’s a season ago while Bensen rushed for 830 yards and 11 TD’s, and caught 18 passes for 310 yards and 4 TD’s.
Junior Tyler Nelson (5’10, 170) joins Roth and Bensen in the offensive backfield after rushing for over 500 yards last season.
Sophomore Jaydon Jump (5’11, 175) and Jared Tyrell (5’6, 145) also help make up the skill positions.
On the offensive line, seniors Leland Bowder (5’11, 175) and Brayden Bensen (5’11, 220) return. Junior Layne Hesse (6’0, 185) and junior Jesse Thompson (5’11, 210) will also compete for spots up front.
Bensen, Bowder, and Brady Oliver return as linebackers, with Jump expected to see time at the position as well.
Roth and Tyrell help make up the secondary with Jump potentially seeing playing time in the defensive backfield also.
Hesse and Thompson are expected to see playing time on the defensive line.
Bob Jensen of the Huskerland Prep Report says he was impressed with the Pendragons’ passion and excitement when he was up there.
“The thing that got me was just the enthusiasm. The enthusiasm in the program. Kids were excited, they were working hard. And especially at the high school level that’s a lot of winning right there.”
A challenging schedule awaits Pender, but the Pendragons figure to find success on the gridiron again this year despite the fact the schedule is tough.
Pender opens up the season next Friday at home against Clarkson/Leigh before taking on CWCE (Chambers/Wheeler Central/Ewing) to start the month of September.
The Pendragons have a bye week before playing Wakefield at home and taking on Homer on the road.
Pender battles Winnebago at home the following week before their rematch with Neligh-Oakdale on the road.
The Pendragons conclude the home portion of their schedule against Omaha Nation before wrapping up the regular season at Guardian Angels Central Catholic.
2016 Pender Pendragons Football Schedule:
09/02/16 @ CWCE
09/23/16 @ Homer
10/07/16 @ Neligh-Oakdale
10/14/16 Omaha Nation
10/21/16 @ Guardian Angels Central Catholic