Walled Lake Western quarterback Zach Trainor throws a pass during a recent practice. Western went 8-4 last season.

Walled Lake Western quarterback Zach Trainor throws a pass during a recent practice. Western went 8-4 last season.

Photo by Deb Jacques

2019 Football Preview: Walled Lake Western

2018 Record: 8-4

By: C & G Sports Staff | C&G Newspapers | Published July 26, 2019

Helmet provided by michiganhelmetproject.org

Last season’s record: 8-4

League: Lakes Valley Conference

Returning starters: 10

First game: 7 p.m. Aug. 29 vs. White Lake Lakeland

Offensive keys:
Western found success on offense last season, scoring a total of 320 points.

In 2019, consistency will be a key, and coach Alex Grignon wants his offense and defense to work together more.

“We need to do a better job of capitalizing off each other offensively and defensively,” Grignon said. “We were able to throw up a lot of points, and then at times we really struggled. In three of our four losses, we scored 14 points or less in the game, so we just need to complement each other better.”

Defensive keys:
After allowing opponents to score just 188 points in 2017, the Warriors followed that up by holding opposing teams to 218 last season.

To have similar success, Grignon is hoping to see his defensive front play more consistently.

“We need to be more disciplined up front,” Grignon said. “We had some great players last year that made some phenomenal plays up front for us. I think consistency across the front can get better, and playing more as a unit. It might not necessarily be your job to make the tackle, but you need to demand a double team, you need to control your gap, you need to be disruptive.”

Key players to watch on defense are Malachi Bolden (lineman), CJ Brown (defensive back), Brandon Camfield (linebacker), Justin Collier (lineman) and Tony Williams (linebacker).

Coach’s outlook:
The Warriors have made the playoffs in nine consecutive seasons and hope to do the same this season. Grignon also believes his team can compete for an LVC title.

“I think the conference is up for grabs, and it’s going to be the team that plays the most consistent on Friday nights that’ll walk away with the league title this year,” Grignon said.

vs. White Lake Lakeland (7-4) — 7 p.m. Aug. 28 
Western is 10-4 all-time against Lakeland, but the Eagles grabbed a 28-7 win last season. It was tied for the lowest scoring output of the regular season for the Warriors. 

at South Lyon East (6-5) — 7 p.m. Sept. 6 
The Warriors are undefeated against South Lyon East, holding a 4-0 record. Last year, Western squeaked out a 12-7 win. 

at Milford High (1-8) — 7 p.m. Sept. 13
Western is also undefeated against Milford, sitting at 7-0 against the Mavericks. Over the last two meetings, the Warriors have outscored Milford 79-8. 

vs. Orchard Lake St. Mary’s (3-6) — 7 p.m. Sept. 20 
This will be the second meeting between the two programs. Back in 2005, St. Mary’s took down the Warriors 48-10 in a playoff game.  

vs. Waterford Mott (4-5) — 7:30 p.m. Sept. 27
Western took last year’s meeting 52-13 and has won three of the last four matchups. Last year, the Warriors scored 320 points while giving up 218. 

vs. Waterford Kettering (1-8) — 7 p.m. Oct. 4 
Western has won 15 consecutive meetings against Kettering, with the last four coming by double digits. Western has made the state playoffs the last nine seasons. 

vs. South Lyon High (10-1) — 7 p.m. Oct. 11
Western and South Lyon split two games last year, with the Lions grabbing a win in the regular season and the Warriors nabbing a 35-14 win in the playoffs. 

at Walled Lake Northern (4-5) — 7 p.m. Oct. 18
Western is 15-2 all-time against Northern and has won the last seven meetings. Last year, the Warriors defeated the Knights 38-24. 

at Walled Lake Central (2-7) — 7 p.m. Oct. 25 
Western has a double-digit lead in the all-time series and has won the last eight matchups. The Warriors’ 48 points against the Vikings last year was their second-highest scoring output of the season.