8/4/2013 6:00:00 AM Football practice starts Monday Kingman's three high schools in a year of transition
Lee Williams High scores against Coconino in a junior varsity football game last September. The Volunteers will be playing a varsity schedule this year.
KINGMAN - Football practice at Kingman's three high schools begins Monday.
The season marks the debut of Lee Williams High and Kingman Academy High in the Arizona Interscholastic Association, while Kingman High will be competing in a new division, dropping down a notch to Division III. It is a year of transition, and one that all three schools are eager to begin.
Before all that, though, all players have to have a physical and take the concussion awareness course online before they can suit up. To that end, "clearance cards" are available at the schools for players who haven't taken care of the basics.
Kingman High welcomes a new coach, David Ward, when the Bulldogs take the field at 5 p.m. Monday on the campus. KHS posted a 4-6 record last year and has a strong senior class that has enjoyed some success starting as freshmen.
It doesn't come close to the success at Kingman Academy High in recent years. The Tigers have been a powerhouse, winning the state title and going 10-1 last year while dominating the competition in the Charter Athletic Association. Now coach Wally Mueller and his team are moving into the AIA (Division V) to see how they stack up.
The Tigers take the field in Centennial Park at 6 p.m. Monday for their first official practice.
Lee Williams High makes the leap to varsity after competing on the junior varsity level a year ago, when the school first opened its doors. The Volunteers, coached by Eugene Kramer, will field a team made up of sophomores and freshmen. Kramer has stressed weight room work as a way to level the playing field against older, more mature opponents.
The Volunteers practice at 3:45 p.m. at the downtown campus. Kramer asks that players new to the program arrive by 3 p.m.
Practice for the other fall sports - golf, volleyball, cross country and swimming - begins Aug. 12.