Lewiston High School
Conference: 5A Inland Empire League
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Head Coach: Shawn Nilsson
Years as Head Coach: 5th Season
Previous Experience: Assistant and coordinator for the last 29 years
Record Last Year: 9-2
Colton Richardson, Quarterback, Senior
Riley Way, Receiver/Defensive back, Senior
Troy Ahlers, Wide receiver/Defensive back, Senior
Alex Light, Wide receiver/ Defensive back, Senior
Justin Chase, Offensive line/Defensive line, Senior
Dustin McLean, Offensive/Defensive line, Senior
Jaret Driskel, Wide receiver/Defensive back, Senior
Levi Speer, Running back/Linebacker, Senior
Alex Weldy, Defensive line, Senior
Keyshawn Clark, Wide receiver/Linebacker, Senior
Returning Players with Honors:
Colton Richardson, 2nd Team All-State
Photo By: Clayton Bunt - #19 Colton Richardson
Incoming impact players:
Mason UIrich, Linebacker/Running back
Written by: Lucas Gebhart
Led by junior quarterback Colton Richardson (pictured), Lewiston had one of the most successful seasons in school history last season. The Bengals went 9-2 and fell to eventual state champions Rocky Mountain in the playoffs by a score of 65-20.
There is no reason the Bengals won’t be able to contend for a state title in 2016.
According to head coach, Shawn Nilsson, Lewiston did not lose any key pieces from last year’s squad.
The Bengals return Richardson at quarterback, who was given Second Team All-State honors as a junior. Now, the senior looks primed to be the best quarterback in the state of Idaho as he didn’t lose any of his favorite targets.
Wide receivers Riley Way, Troy Ahlers, Jaret Driskel, Keyshawn Clark and Alex Light are all returning for their senior campaigns, while linemen Justin Case and Dustin McLean return to the trenches for their senior season.
In addition, the Bengals will also return Alex Weldy and Justin Chase, who is a three-year starter, to the defensive line, while Ahlers and Light will return to the secondary where they will also be three-year starters.
The two losses last season came to top-notch teams in the 5A classification, a 56-28 loss to conference rival Coeur d'Alene and the 65-20 loss to Rocky in the playoffs.
In both the losses, the Bengal defense was lit up like a Christmas tree, and while their powerful offense was able to get into the 20s, it was not the same success they were accustomed to throughout the season.
The key this season, according to Nilsson, will be to run the football with better efficiency and stopping the run through solid linebacker play.
Richardson will put up numbers. The Bengal offense will light up the scoreboard and the now experienced secondary should be able to slow opposing quarterbacks. The only weakness of the Lewiston team appears to be the run defense, a weakness that opposing coaching staffs will no doubt look to exploit.
The Bengals cannot afford to waste any time, as they will be tested right out of the gate with a road trip to Pocatello where they will take on the Highland Rams.
(IdahoSports.com will be web casting this game live and free as part of the Rocky Mountain Rumble)