Spartan football gears up for another season

The Spartan football team is back in action for the fall 2022-2023 season.

ATTICUS HUFFSTUTLER, SNN Staff Writer

The Lakewood Spartans football team has always been the top in Pinellas County and have always had a good run in the playoffs. Last year, their trip sent them all the way to the Florida State Football semifinals. To fulfill their high hopes this year, the Spartans have a little rebuilding to do.

Lakewood’s star wide receiver Amari Niblack has continued his athletic journey at the University of Alabama, an institution famous for building football players. Another notable graduate was Terrell Crosby, the safety/wide receiver, who graduated and is playing at Iowa State. However, the Spartans’ quarterback last year, Anthony Colandrea, was a junior, so he will be returning for his final season.

There are also many changes as to how the practices and games are being conducted. Offensive line coach Melia Garcia says that many changes have been made to the way practices are run, as they are more set-in stone.

“The practices this year are more efficient, and the time is allocated affectively,” Garcia said.

All these changes showed in the preseason jamboree as the Spartans beat Palmetto High School 41-14, in only one half. The Spartans’ run defense looked so much better than last year, but their defensive backfield looked a bit slower with the loss of Crosby. The offense looked as overpowered as ever, and with the return of senior kicker Nate Sosa-Jones, the Spartans finally have a functional special teams again.

The standout players this year include Colandrea, who caught three touchdowns against Palmetto and running back Martravius Lloyd.

The Spartans are also very excited about the upcoming season, saying that they will not stop until they hit states.

“Coach Moore has surrounded us with more than qualified coaches to make us into not just better players but better men,” junior defensive lineman Chamberlain Campbell said.