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February 27. 2014 8:12PM

Shrine grid game roster announced

The toughest part about being a head coach for the Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl? It might be selecting the roster.

“There were just so many good players nominated,” New Hampshire head coach Dave Jackson said after New Hampshire’s 36-player roster for this summer’s 61st Annual Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl was released Thursday. “You read through the bios and they’re all high-character kids. It was especially tough to say no to some of the Division I kids.”

New Hampshire’s roster features 12 players from Division I schools, 13 from Division II and 11 from Division III.

This year’s game will be played Aug. 2 at Dartmouth College’s Memorial Field (5:30 p.m.). The event features all-star football players from Vermont and New Hampshire, and raises money for the Shriners Hospitals for Children in Springfield, Mass., and Montreal; and the Shrine Burns Institute in Boston.

Four players who will play for the University of New Hampshire were selected: Nashua South’s Trevor Knight, Plymouth Regional’s Jared Kuehl, Hanover’s Shawn Cavallaro and Plymouth’s Kyle Reisert. Knight, Kuehl and Cavallaro earned scholarship money. Reisert will be a preferred walk-on.

Jackson, who guided Merrimack Valley of Penacook to a 7-3 record and the program’s first playoff appearance last season, also elected to use a roster spot on kicker Hayden Middleton of St. Thomas Aquinas of Dover.

“I’m not sure a Shrine team has ever had four kids headed to UNH,” Jackson said.

Training camp will begin July 26. Both teams will practice at Castleton State College in Castleton, Vt.

Jackson said New Hampshire will run a no-huddle, spread offense in this year’s game. He said the strength of the team is at the skill positions.

“We have some excellent linemen, but there are so many weapons on this team,” he said. “There’s more depth and explosiveness with the skill kids, and it seemed like the skill kids we thought were the best already have some spread experience.”

The New Hampshire coaching staff includes Shawn Aubut (Merrimack), Justin Hufft (Goffstown), Kip Jackson (Nashua South), Brandon Lilley (Nashua South) and Bill Monson (Nashua South).

New Hampshire won last year’s game 43-0 and leads the series 45-13-2. New Hampshire has won the last 13 games.

Mike Williams of Bellows Free Academy-Fairfax is Vermont’s head coach. Williams was on the Vermont staff as an assistant coach for last year’s game.

“We’ll practice everybody on both sides of the ball — at least for the first few days — and then we hope to play them just one way,” Jackson said. “We’re all excited to coach in this game.”

New Hampshire roster

Dwight Alford (Bow), Cody Aylward (Campbell), Jack Athanas (Gilford), Alec Boucher (Winnacunnet), Shawn Cavallaro (Hanover), Joe Chimelski (Nashua North), David Crichton (Windham), Dean Dustin (Pembroke), Trent Fortune Jr. (Bedford), Marc Gaudet (Concord), Jake Geppert (St. Thomas), Patrick Glynn (Portsmouth), Ryan Head (Merrimack Valley), Colin Healy (Merrimack), Jared Kuehl (Plymouth), Kai Kleyensteuber (Stevens), Trevor Knight (Nashua South), Peter Lalime (Exeter), Manny Latimore (Pinkerton), Joseph LeClerc (Epping/Newmarket), Matt Madden (Pinkerton), Cole Martin (Merrimack Valley), Christian McKenna (Campbell), Chris Medeiros (Pelham), Hayden Middleton (St. Thomas), Alex Parenteau (Keene), Drake Parker (Gilford), Donald Pellerin (Stevens), Donovan Phanor (Portsmouth), Drew Prescott (Souhegan), Kyle Reisert (Plymouth), Seimou Smith (Concord), Tristen Theroux (Trinity), Jacob Valinski (Epping/Newmarket), Dakota Van Tassell (Winnisquam), Eric Waddington (Dover).

rbrown@unionleader.com


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