Coach: Joel Stoneton (seventh year)

Last year’s record: 6-4, lost to Dirigo in Western Class C semifinals

Returning players: Seniors — Chris Halligan (G), Ryan Castonguay (T/DE), Travis Sherman (G/DE), Hunter Sherman (TE/ILB), Joey Brennan (WR/CB), Colby Laflamme (WR/CB), Travis Luce (QB), Travis Hutchins (FB/OLB), Ryan Conant (TB/OLB), Zach Barter (DT), Eric Duplessis (FB/ILB); Juniors — Chris Bowers (C), Robin Cook (DT).

Key losses: Corey Staples (TE/DE), Cory Harris (TB), Dane Gomberg (DT), Tyler Arsenault (WR/CB).

Promising newcomers: Senior —Derek Pamphrey (TB); Junior — Tyler Reeves (T).

Outlook: For the second time in three years, Winthrop opens the season as the favorite in Western C. The Ramblers won the regional title in 2008 and made it to the semfinals with a junior-dominated team last year. All but three of the 22 starting spots are occupied by seniors. Winthrop has a strong two-headed threat at tailback in Conant and Pamphrey, the latter fully recovered from a knee injury suffered in the ’09 preseason. The defense will be quick and athletic. An early game to watch: Winthrop’s week 2 visit to reigning state champion Dirigo.

Coach’s comment: “We have people in our league that are capable of coming right at us. We’ll have to see how we handle that.” — Coach Joel Stoneton

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