After a magical season that saw the varsity football team win its first CIF Southern Section 8 Man Division 1 title, the big question heading into the 2011 campaign is whether Coach Scott Napier's squad can do it again.
The first step on the journey towards a second consecutive title will be Saturday, Sept. 10, when Windward travels to Brentwood for an 11-man clash to open its nonleague schedule. Windward will seek to avenge a 22-0 loss to the Eagles last season.
The Wildcats' home opener will be the following Saturday (Sept. 17) against Riverside Christian at Foley Field, then they hit the road for nonleague games against Santa Clarita Christian at Canyon High and Avalon at Joe Machado Field on Catalina Island.
Santa Clarita Christian dealt Windward a 58-50 defeat in the league finale last November, when the Wildcats finished third before running the table in the postseason.
After hosting their Heritage League opener against Milken, the Wildcats play their final nonleague game October 15 against Ojai Thacher--an 8 Man squad Windward routed 64-26 last fall.
Windward wraps up the regular season with league games against Lancaster Baptist, Granada Hills Hillcrest Christian and Faith Baptist of Canoga Park. The league was expanded from four teams to five this season.
Windward beat Hillcrest Christian 49-20 last season and split with Faith Baptist--losing 62-36 in league play but rebounding for a 48-40 victory in the playoffs.
Having lost 13 seniors and all but one starter to graduation, Windward was supposed to have been in rebuilding mode last season, but led by quarterbacks Jordan Wilson and Sam Hake, the Wildcats went 13-4-1 while averaging 43 points per game and upset Victorville Excelsior, 43-42, in overtime in the championship game.
2011 WINDWARD 8 MAN VARSITY FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
Sept. 10 -- at Brentwood, 1 p.m.
Sept. 17 -- vs. Riverside Christian, 7 p.m.
Sept. 24 -- vs. Santa Clarita Christian at Canyon High, 7 p.m.
Oct. 1 -- at Avalon (Catalina), 1 p.m.
Oct. 6 -- vs. Milken, 2 p.m.*
Oct. 15 -- vs. Thacher, 1 p.m.
Oct. 22 -- vs. Lancaster Baptist, 2 p.m.*
Oct. 28 -- vs. Hillcrest Christian at Granada Hills High, 6 p.m.*
Nov. 5 -- at Faith Baptist, 1:30 p.m.*
* Heritage League game