2022 Fall Preview: Ash Grove Football


By Brennan Stebbins (For OzarksSportsZone.com)

After a 7-4 season last fall – the school’s best record since 2017 – the Ash Grove Pirates graduated four players who earned All-Southwest Conference honors. That list includes two who were unanimous selections: offensive lineman Jared Lobdell (also a first team linebacker) and wide receiver Sammy Moreland (also a first team defensive back). Also gone are tight end Zane Delk, a first team All-Conference player and Tristan Bowers, who was an honorable mention pick as a running back and defensive lineman.

Moreland finished with 42 catches for 637 yards and seven touchdowns.

The good news for the Pirates is they still return eight All-Conference players, including dual threat quarterback Brock Mooneyham as a senior.

“Last year if you told me that Sammy Moreland and Zane Delk would have the year they did on the outside I would have been shocked,” head coach Ryan Long said. “I knew they had a ton of potential but the way they meshed with Brock was great for us. This year I expect to run the ball a little bit more. We don’t have the receiving weapons like we had last year with Sammy and Zane. That’s trying to replace two 6-3 kids that could run. We were fortunate to have that. We’re hoping to run the ball a little more and really lean on our offensive line. We’re hoping to be a little bigger and more physical up front.”

That offensive line starts with returning All-Conference players Payton Griffin and Austin Lowak, both of whom earned honorable mention honors offensively. Griffin returns at center and Lowak is back at guard. Junior Blake McNeece played until week five last year when he got injured and should start at tackle.

Mooneyham was a second team All-Conference quarterback (also All-District) as a junior who accounted for nearly 3,000 yards of offense. He completed 115-of-229 passes for 1,592 yards and 18 touchdowns and rushed 182 times for 1,367 yards and 21 scores.

“His stats speak for themselves,” Long said.

Senior Nate Trammell will join him in the backfield and Long said he wants to get him more involved this year. Other returning skill players are senior Parker Crow, junior Brady Nicholson, a second team All-Conference receiver; and senior Elijah Morrison, a second team All-Conference receiver.


Lowak, McNeece and Griffin will play on the defensive line and Jasper Seidel could play on the line or at linebacker. Lowak earned first team All-Conference honors as a defensive lineman.

Sophomore Dominic Breesawitz will be a speedy nose guard. Trammell (second team All-Conference and All-District linebacker) will hold down the linebacking group from the middle. Junior Ammon Crockett, senior Riddoc Ferrier (second team All-Conference end) could also play there, with Crow and Morrison playing outside linebacker after earning honorable mention All-Conference honors. Morrison was also an All-District player.

Mooneyham returns at safety and is expected to start on both sides of the ball after seeing limited time defensively as a junior. He still earned honorable mention All-Conference honors as a defensive back.

“They’re a really close group, they’ve been around playing together for a while now,” Long said. “This group of seniors basically all played JV as freshmen. They’ve really been playing together their whole career. It’s going to be exciting. I’m hoping to build on our success we had last year and keep improving.”

The Pirates have replaced Cabool with Lighthouse Christian in week two, and also replaced Agape with Harrisburg. The regular season begins at Diamond.

Ash Grove will head to Sarcoxie for its jamboree.

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