Football team preview: Alonso


At a glance

Coach: Dylan Clark (first season) 

Class: 8A, District 7

Last year: 2-8

Key players: ILB Tre Beach, Sr.; RB James Berry, Sr.; DB Aumari Gary, Sr.; OLB/SS Anthony Keene, Sr.; DE Lewis Lloyd, Sr.; DB Marc Martinez, Sr.; OL Nick McDonough, Sr.; DT Antonio Moore, Sr.; OL Aidan Mullins, Sr.; WR Javiar Mustelier, Sr.  


Sept. 11 vs. Leto

Sept. 17 vs. Steinbrenner

Sept. 25 at Lennard

Oct. 2 at Palm Harbor University

Oct. 9 vs.  Freedom

Oct. 16 at Wharton

Oct. 23 Bye

Oct. 30 vs. Plant

Nov. 6 at Blake

Things to know

Finding stability

For years, Alonso was a model of coaching consistency. Mike Heldt was in charge of the program for eight seasons (2002-09). Brian Emanuel had the job for six years (2011-16). Since Emaunel’s departure, the Ravens have been searching for some stability at the top. Alonso has gone through three coaches in the past four years. The latest hire is Dylan Clark, who served as Plant City’s defensive coordinator the past two seasons. Because spring practice was cancelled, Clark has not been able to evaluate his team in any game situations yet, but there are a group of about 10 seniors who have been working hard in the weight room and have the opportunity to build a foundation others can follow.

Veteran blockers

Alonso took its lumps last year in large part because of inexperience. If the Ravens are to turn things around, the offensive line will lead the way considering all five starters return. The veteran group also has some size, averaging 265 pounds per starter. Sergio Garcia and Nick McDonough could each have a breakout year. Garcia, a 6-foot, 260 pound junior, mans the middle as a center. McDonough, a 6-4, 320 pound senior, is moving from tackle to guard to create holes in the zone and power run game. 

De-fense! De-fense!

Clark has some talent to work with defensively, especially among the front seven. Tre Beach, Hunter Elliott and Antonio Moore are among the leaders of a unit that allowed 15 points or less against four opponents last season. Tripp Burdgess, a 6-foot-8, 320 pound senior who is known for his towering presence in basketball, moves from the offensive line to the defensive front, giving the Ravens more size to create havoc in the trenches.