Appleton North ready for big test to open season

High School Sports

Appleton, Wis. (WFRV) – The Appleton North Lightning will be tested right out of the gates as the host Franklin in one of the top match-ups in the state.

Playing in the FVA is difficult enough already with the likes of Kimberly, Fond du lac, and Neenah already on the schedule. Appleton North won’t waste any time getting into the thick of their schedule this year as they welcome Franklin to Paul Engen Field on Friday night.

“I feel like the guys are really excited just because of how big of a game we’ve got this week. It’s definitely something that’s pretty easy to get hyped up for, get excited for, and I feel like we’ve got a good m,entality heading into it,” said senior Wil Schroeder.

The Lightning last faced Franklin in 2019, and fell to the Sabers 31-7. The goal of course is to win the game, but Rob Salm’s squad gets more out of a tough non-conference match-up despite the outcome.

“We went down to Franklin a couple years ago, and played a competitive game. We didn’t get the result we wanted, but we looked at it as a good opportunity for our team to grow, and to improve, and to measure ourselves against a really quality opponent. Because that’s what we play in the FVA every week,” said head coach Rob Salm.

Appleton North returns plenty of talent from a team that finished the spring season with a 5-2 record. Quarterback Matthew Schecklman, and Northern Iowa commit, is back after throwing for 885 yards and five touchdowns in the spring. Protecting the Lightning quarterback is Wesley King, who picked up an offer from Central Michigan over the summer and has seen plenty of attention from FCS programs like North Dakota State, Northern Iowa, and Illinois State.

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