Junior runningback Hunter Skeens and the Blazers open the season at 6A defending state champion SM East Sept.. 4. Kickoff is 7 pm at Shawnee Mission South district stadium. Photo by Kelly Johns

Junior running back Hunter Skeens and the Blazers open the season at 6A defending state champion SM East Sept.. 4. Kickoff is 7 pm at Shawnee Mission South district stadium. Photo courtesy of Kelly Johns

A much improved GEHS Blazer football team will open the season September 4th at defending 6A State Champion Shawnee Mission East. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Shawnee Mission South District Stadium.
East defeated Hutchinson 33-14 for its first ever State football title last November and will provide quite an opening game challenge. The Lancers lost several starters to graduation, but will be a formidable foe.
The Blazers have been working hard in the offseason under the tutelage of 10 year Head Coach Marvin Diener. Diener has demanded daily weights and conditioning drills in preparation for East.
Offensively, GEHS will operate out of an I-set in multiple formations with junior quarterback Griffin Johns at the helm. Right behind Johns will be junior running back Hunter Skeens and sophomore Keegan Michael.
Other returning offensive starters are senior tackle Donovan Kelly (6’2”-272 lbs.), junior Zach Bass (6’3”- 211 lbs.), junior Sam Stranathan (6’2”- 252) and sophomore Michael (5’9” -190 lbs.).
Defensively, the Blazers return five starters including junior defensive back Jared Highfill (6’1”- 175 lbs.), junior linebacker Conner Boyt (5’11” -195), senior Hunter Mulford (6’3”-330), junior linebacker Jonas Pippitt (5’11”- 206 lbs.), who was last year’s leading tackler, and Sophomore Tyler Henry (5’11”-195 lbs.).
Other returning letter winners include Tristen Cody (defensive line), Edrick Rouse (offensive line), Justin Sikes (offensive line), David Valiente (offensive line), and Marshall Carpenter (tight end).
Following the East matchup, GEHS returns home to host defending 5A state champion, Bishop Miege.