The Panthers are hoping to do this year what they nearly accomplished last year: qualify for the playoffs.
Potomac Falls made vast improvements in 1998, posting a 6-4 record one year after winning only one game--by forfeit--in its inaugural season.
Potomac Falls has three experienced players on offense in quarterback Tommy Edwards, tackle David Dockendorff and guard Mike Bell; the three seniors are all third-year starters.
But the Panthers' strength should be on defense; Coach Wes Driskill says "the defense could be the best we've ever had."
Seniors Mark Panchura and Nate Weller (5-10, 185) anchor the defensive line in front of a strong group of linebackers.
Junior linebacker Jason Lutman (6-1, 225) led the Panthers in solo tackles (23), first hits (35) and caused fumbles (4) last year, and earned second team all-Concorde District honors.
Senior linebacker Ike Hamilton (6-2, 210) is one of the team's best athletes.
QB Tommy Edwards (5-10, 150, Sr.)--Edwards has been the Panthers' starting quarterback since the school opened in 1997; this year, he will be pushed for playing time by junior Jason Treon. Edwards, an honorable mention all-Concorde District selection, completed 56 of 121 passes for 931 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Other offensive players to watch: K Greg Kuehn, Jr.; OT David Dockendorff, Sr.; OG Mike Bell, Sr.; OG Kenny Daffron, Sr.; HB Ernest Wilson, Sr.
DT Mark Panchura (6-4, 278, Sr.)--Panchura improved every week last season after not playing football as a sophomore. He is bigger and stronger than he was last year--and, Driskill hopes, more aggressive as well.
Other defensive players to watch: LB Jason Lutman, Jr.; DE Nate Weller, Sr.; ILB Ike Hamilton, Sr.; DB Jason Treon, Jr.; DE Tom McIntosh, Jr.; LB Chris McKenna, Jr.
* District/Division: Group AA Northwestern/Division 4.
* Coach: Wes Driskill, third season.
* Last year's record: 6-4 overall, 4-3 AAA Concorde District.
* Most recent playoff appearance: None.
* Starters returning (offense/defense): 4/4.
Clarke County, 7:30
South Lakes, 7:30
at Jefferson County (W.Va.), 7:30
at Broad Run, 7:30
Loudoun County, 7:30
at Loudoun Valley, 7:30
Park View, 7:30
Warren County, 7:30
at Handley, 1:30
at Liberty, 7:30
37 at Osbourn Park 7
37 Broad Run 14
28 Jefferson 21
14 at Park View 41
20 Chantilly 37
7 at Centreville 50
27 W.T. Woodson 18
18 at South Lakes 17
7 at Oakton 35
27 Herndon 20
CAPTION: Quarterback Tommy Edwards threw 12 touchdown passes last year.