DURANGO -- The Trailblazers made their first postseason appearance last year and nearly upset an undefeated Valley team. Although two key offensive linemen have graduated, the majority of the starters from the 5-5 team return, including senior quarterback Scott Freel and junior running back Alex Dixon, both second-team All-Sunset selections last year.

  Scott Freel
Statistically, Freel is the Southern Conference's top returning quarterback after throwing for 1,062 yards and nine touchdowns. Freel threw three interceptions in his first varsity start and just one in his next nine.

  Alex Dixon
Dixon, who ran for 342 yards in a victory over Basic, rushed for 766 yards and six touchdowns in eight games.

  Jason Carpenter
Freel will have a capable receiver in second-team All-Sunset receiver Jason Carpenter. The senior caught 27 passes for 396 yards in 1996.

Senior defensive linemen Tony Kim, Seth Doty, Will Day and Harley Hadley are among six returning defensive starters.

A new offensive line will be built around senior center Adam Krametbauer.

"If we can find some JV guys to step in for the lost offensive linemen, we might be all right," second- year coach John Mausbach said. "We got a taste of the playoffs last year, and our goal is just to get back there."

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