Chugiak flag program under new leadership

Mustangs fall to West in season opener


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Chugiak quarterback Alise Arnold looks to throw down field against West on Saturday, Aug. 24. The Eagles beat Chugiak 13-6.

MIKE NESPER

Jon Schroeder might not be running the Mustangs flag football program anymore, but the team is still benefitting from the groundwork laid by the longtime Chugiak coach.

Of the 17 on varsity, 11 are seniors, including all eight returners. New coach Marilyn Campnell said the team’s experience makes her job a little easier.

“I’m lucky to step into a position that has so many seasoned players,” said Campnell, the second varsity head coach in program history.

Schroeder, who retired in May after 25 years as a Chugiak High teacher, guided the Mustangs to consecutive Cook Inlet Conference titles in 2006 and 2007.

Campnell has been with Chugiak for three seasons, serving as a JV and C team coach. Campnell said her main goal is to have her girls working as a unit.

“I’m a freak about team,” she said.

Of the eight returners, three were all-conference selections last season. Holly Brehmer earned first team honors and Janissa Arzie and Kylie Baker were second team picks.

Though more than half the team is new to varsity, the Mustangs have plenty of talent, senior Ashleigh Sitz said.

The senior-laden roster is another benefit, Brehmer said.

“We have a lot of knowledge about the game,” she said.

Chugiak’s offense should be potent, Brehmer said, as the Mustangs have a speedy bunch of multi-sport athletes.

In order to reach the conference finals, all of the Mustangs need to be on the same page, Sitz said.

“We have to get our team chemistry back,” she said.

Chugiak notched its first win of the season with a 6-0 victory over East on Tuesday, Aug. 27 at Tom Huffer Sr. Stadium. Arzie scored the game’s lone touchdown on a 65-yard run.

Chugiak opened the 2013 season with a 13-6 loss to visiting West on Saturday, Aug. 24 at Tom Huffer Sr. Stadium. Arzie also provided the Mustangs’ lone touchdown on an 85-yard reception from quarterback Alise Arnold.

West grabbed five interceptions and Eagles quarterback Annie Rush threw for 173 yards and two touchdowns.

The Mustangs travel to Dimond on Saturday, Aug. 31 for an 8 p.m. rematch against the Lynx.

 

Contact Mike Nesper at 694-2727 or mike.nesper@alaskastar.com.

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