By Phil Anastasia
Training camp confidential: Timber Creek
Coach: Rob Hinson
Last year: 10-2, won WJFL Constitution, lost to Shawnee in SJ 4 title game
Schedule: at Pennsauken, at Cherokee, Delsea, Washington Twp., at Kingsway, bye, at Clearview, Moorestown, Hammonton, at Triton (Thanksgiving)
Player to watch: Senior Alan Butler (pictured), The 6-2, 175-pound Butler is a top WR and team leader for the Chargers. He caught 41 passes for 540 yards and 4 TDs last season. He's a terrific student with a 3.97 GPA with lots of A.P. courses. He has committed to Bucknell.
Outlook: Timber Creek has been one of the state's top programs over the last three seasons, with a combined record of 32-4, two South Jersey titles and a finals appearance. The program is humming at a high level and shows no sign of dropping off. This year's team is loaded with talent led by senior DB/RB Kareem Ali (5-11, 170), a Temple recruit, and junior WR Cameron Chambers (6-2, 200), a Michigan State recruit. Chambers caught 57 yards for 1196 yards and 12 TDs last season and was MaxPrep's national sophomore of the year. Three seniors have arrived as transfers and should make immediate and major impacts: QB Khalil Trotman (6-1, 185), who started for two years at Burlington Twp.; LB Neal Nelson (6-2, 220), a Central Florida recruit who arrived from Buena; and DB Shawn Springs (5-9, 165), a former Cardinal O'Hara of Philadelphia player and the nephew of the former Dallas Cowboys player. Other athletes to watch include senior linemen Isaiah Hardy (6-6, 320), Dashon Thomas (6-3, 300), Darien Sherif (6-1, 210) and Kennedy Harris (6-2, 210) along with senior DB Mason Pease (5-9, 170), senior WR/DB Gary Sandes (5-11, 175) and junior LBs Tavion Martin (6-0, 195) and Julian Mahan (6-0, 220).
Group 4 preview: Timber Creek could be heading toward a showdown rematch with Shawnee, which also returns a ton of talent from last year's team. Both squads look like they will be Top 5 in SJ.
Young gun: Hinson says remember this name: Devin Leary. He's a 5-11, 155-pound freshman quarterback who could emerge as a top player for the Chargers in the future.
Quote: "It motivates the whole team to a level I can't even describe. We don't want that taste. We don't want to finish like that again," Butler said of the loss to Shawnee in last season's SJ 4 title game at Rowan.
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