How does a high school football team recover from losing its all-time leading rusher, another top-10 all-time rusher/scorer and defensive leader, and one of the best quarterbacks it has had in school history?
Stay tuned, because the New Holstein High School football team is about to find out.
Especially at the high school and college level but really in all sports, no players stick around forever. Some years see more losses than others, and that is the case for the Huskies as they transition from losing top rusher Tyler McCoy, standout two-way player Brad Schroeder, and quarterback Teddy Schnell all in the same year, among other key players.
But believe it or not, the NHHS program has its sights set on not only making the playoffs again this season but earning a seed high enough to host a home game. Coach Matt Rupp said while Kiel might be the favorite in the Eastern Wisconsin Conference, there could be as many as five teams in the race with the Huskies being one of them.
The optimism around the Husky program is legitimate based on the team’s strength—quality and quantity in the offensive and defensive lines. Book-end
tackles Sam Casper (6-6, 215, Jr.) and Mitchell Diederich (6-5, 310, Sr.), experienced guards Collin Buteyn (6-0, 235, Sr.) and Jon Sesing (6-1, 205, Sr.), and center Ryan Schneider (6-0, 195, Sr.)— along with tight end Adam Casper (6-2, 180, Jr.)—should provide a lot of success for whomever is operating in the offensive backfield.


“Right now we’re really strong in the offensive and defensive lines,” Rupp said. “It’s probably one of our strongest groups in years. So far we’ve seen some
good things.”
Adding to the optimism is how Kadyn Judkins (6-1, 180, Sr.) has looked in the offensive backfield in a couple early season scrimmages. He was becoming a defensive force in the EWC last season when he suffered a season-ending leg injury, but was back this spring to play catcher for the Husky baseball team and appears fully recovered. Fullback Jacob Rach (6-0, 180, Sr.) also is running hard, Rupp said. Also getting carries will be Sam Cady (6-0, 160, Jr.) and Michael Volz (6-1, 175, Jr.).
One position which is still up in the air is the one every fan looks at first—quarterback. The Huskies have a good situation in that Cameron Olson (6-2, 168, Jr.) and Henry Schnell (6-1, 162, Sph.) continue to battle for the starting spot just days before the opener. Rupp said it is quite possible both will see action, at least early in the season. Both are athletic and could add greatly to the running game behind the offensive line. When they do throw, top targets include Robert Hess (6-2, 193, Jr.), Dayne Jacobson (5-9, 175, Sr.), and Owen Heus (5-11, 170, Sr.).
The defensive side of the ball might be the Huskies’ top strength this season.
Diederich and Sesing—who is already on the list of all-time NHHS sack leaders— will hold down the middle of the defensive line. Ends will include Judkins, Sam Casper, Adam Casper, and Josh Rach (5-11, 163, Jr.).
Linebackers will include Buteyn, Keagan Schmitz (5-10, 185, Sr.), and Nathan Boehnlein (5-10, 175, Sr.), along with Will Meinert (5-11, 181, Jr.), Grady
Rosenthal (6-4, 195, Sr.), and Schneider.
Defensive backs will include Cady, Jeremy Lisowe (5-9, 150, Sr.), and Heus at the corners, and Hess, Volz, and Jacobson at safeties.
The Huskies also may have solved their kicking challenges from last year with soccer player Nick Reedy, a senior, assisting the team along with sophomore Riley Smith. Volz will handle the punting.
With a number of players starting both ways, the Huskies will need plenty of other players to step up and provide some relief. Those players may include seniors Matthew Wiley, Alex McClure, Cole Luedtke, and Isaac Anderson; juniors Blake Mirsberger and Josiah Grundl; and sophomores Cody Abler, Tyler Gebhart, Hunter Lisowe, Blake Ritchie, Ashton Ruedinger, Zander Casper, Jacob Sesing, Luke Abrams, Zachary Roix, and Aiden West.
In addition to Kiel, Rupp said Chilton has a lot of players back and could be in the mix to challenge for the EWC title.
New Holstein hosts Chilton in the first EWC game in a few weeks, and that could be a big one early in the season. In the meantime, New Holstein opens
its season this Friday on the road—a long road as it plays at Belleville which is southwest of Madison. After crushing Mishicot in the season opener each
of the last two years, the Huskies were forced to find another team about its size with an open date. Belleville has made the playoffs each of the last two seasons.