Lance Clelland (6-5, second year at South River; 14-18, fourth year overall).
One of the county's most potent offenses returns its top members, and Clelland thinks it can be even more prolific than it was last season.
Connor Cox, who threw for 2,896 yards and 32 touchdowns in 11 games last year, is back for his senior year. Add in Lavon Chaney, a Monmouth commit, who rushed for 1,368 yards and 14 touchdowns while catching 45 passes for 676 yards and eight touchdowns out of the backfield, and you have a formidable duo that would be difficult to stop.
There are more weapons, however, at Cox's disposal, including Eric Young, who was second in the county last season with 50 catches for 878 yards and 10 touchdowns. Young trailed only teammate Michael Strange. James Smith, who had 10 catches for 164 yards and two touchdowns, and Billy O'Hara round out the receiving core.
With Chaney's speed and hands to go along with Cox's arm, it will be difficult for defenses to key on one particular aspect of the Seahawks' offense.
"We had a great deal of success last season,"Clelland said. "We led the state in passing, and I think we can be even more explosive than we were last year."
The Seahawks will be looking to improve a defense that yielded some big offensive days by its opponents, including conceding 54 and 45 points in back-to-back games at the end of the season to Old Mill.
Stephen Hincks, who will play on both the offensive and defensive lines, is the top returning tackler, racking up 88 last year. Jason Carmichael looks to play a big role from the linebacker spot, while Leo Donovan, Mike Ward and Matt Gaskins will provide speed from the defensive backfield.
"We are young, but very fast and very smart, " Clelland said. "We are working on making sure they are fundamentally sound with a great knowledge of their roles."
Lavon Chaney will be a serious threat to score on both punt and kick returns.
The Seahawks made significant strides in Clelland's first season in charge, reaching the playoffs before bowing out to eventual state champion Old Mill. The objective for this season is to take all that offensive talent and speed on defense and build it into a unit that is mentally tougher than last season.
"Our goal is to be disciplined and to play the game hard," Clelland said. "We are working on getting mentally tougher, so we can be ready for those big game situations."
South River looks to repeat its playoff appearance and take it a step past that. The Seahawks, who were 6-5 in 2011, dropped consecutive games to Old Mill and lost one-point games to Southern and Arundel.
"Our goal is to make the playoffs and to be the best team in the county," Clelland said.
- Compiled by Ryan Morse
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Connor Cox, Sr., QB, 6-foot-1, 185 pounds
Lavon Chaney, Sr., ATH, 5-foot-8, 180 pounds
Eric Young, Sr., WR, 5-foot-9, 175 pounds
Stephen Hincks, Sr., OL/DL, 6-foot-3, 215 pounds
Will Fountain, Sr., DB, 5-foot-10, 175 pounds
Billy O'Hara, Jr., WR, 6-foot-1, 175 pounds
James Smith, Jr., WR, 6-foot-2, 185 pounds
Leo Donovan, Sr., DB, 5-foot-10, 170 pounds
Trevor Dean, Sr., OL, 6-foot-1, 205 pounds
Jason Carmichael, Jr., 5-foot-9, 195 pounds
Mike Ward, Jr., DB/WR, 5-foot-11, 175 pounds
Matt Gaskins, Sr., DB, 6-foot-2, 190 pounds
Chesapeake, W, 36-7
Southern, L, 25-24
Broadneck, W, 42-28
at Arundel, L, 31-30
Annapolis, W, 48-26
at Severna Park, W, 33-28
at Glen Burnie, L, 50-32
Northeast, W, 40-28
at North County, W, 47-26
at Old Mill, L, 54-20
at Old Mill, L, 45-7*
* -- Playoffs
at Chesapeake, 6:30
at Southern, 6:30
at Broadneck, 6:30
at Annapolis, 6:30
Severna Park, 6:30
Glen Burnie, 6:30
at Northeast, 6:30
North County, 6:30