STAFFORD - It is that time of year again!  Today is September 1 and high school football season is here.  Coach Chuck Donohue's Southern Regional Rams open the season tonight at Central Regional High School at 7 p.m.  Last year, the Rams opened the season and lost a heartbreaking game to Central 21-14.  Southern hopes to avenge that start and get off to a 1-0 start on this 2017 season.

The Rams had a regular season record of 5-4 in 2016.  They were 4-3 in Shore Conference Class A South.   The Rams lost 43-6 to Rancocas Valley in the Group V playoffs on November 11.  

The Rams are expected to have a solid season this year.  They have Joe Miele, Vin Miele, Matt Barnett and John Dolphin returning as running backs.  Each of them also are key players on the defensive side of the ball.  Key returners for Southern are also Zach Otte (offensive lineman and outside linebacker), Derek Wilson (outside linebacker), Zach Hem (kicker, wide receiver and defensive back) and Bill Rolenc (center and defensive lineman).

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Newcomers expected to have an impact this season are:  Nate Farina (tight end), JT Cornelius (tight end and linebacker), Offensive and defensive linemen, David Lowman, Mike Levine and Terrick Grace.

The Rams are looking to contend for the Class A South championship.  Four other teams appear to be in contention in Class A South.  They are Central, Brick Township, Brick Memorial and Toms River North.

Tonight's game kicks off at 7 p.m. and it should be a great contest.