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Leveling the field

By By Chandler Myers
After traveling more than 1,300 miles round trip last season and battling with teams that dwarfed them in sheer numbers, the Northview Chiefs are going to get a welcome change of pace as they dropped from Class 2B to Class A District 1 in the Florida High School Athletic Association.
The change puts Northview against teams that match up more evenly in terms of how many student-athletes they have on their team.
Chiefs interim-head coach Sid Wheatley said their should be some benefit from moving down a class.
Last season, the Chiefs traveled six times only hosting four home games. This year will give Northview an even slate as they host five games and take five road trips.
The 2009 season kicks off with the Chiefs hosting Graceville High School in Bratt on Sept. 4 followed by another home game against South Walton High School on Sept. 11.
The Chiefs will try to get some revenge on South Walton after being shutout 31-0 last season.
Northview takes a week off on Sept. 18, and follows its bye up with the first road trip of the season taking on Bozeman School in Panama City on Sept. 25.
Oct. 2 sees Northview returning to their home field and taking on Baker School before making another road trip on Oct. 9 to Holmes County High School in Bonifay.
The Chiefs host homecoming on Oct. 16 with Freeport High School visiting Bratt with the hopes of spoiling the fun festivities.
A rivalry is renewed on Oct. 23 as Northview will travel to Jay to take on Jay High School.
Wheatley said this is a game that fans are looking forward to, but added that each game is important to the team and coaches.
Sneads High School comes for a visit to Northview on Oct. 30 as the Chiefs will host senior night and their final home game of the 2009 season.
The following week Northview will make the first of two consecutive road trips to close out the season taking on Vernon High School, which spoiled homecoming last season with a 29-12 victory.
A trip to play West Florida High School of Advance Technology closes out the season for Northview, who hopes to get the better of West Florida this season after falling to them 31-20 in Bratt last year.
Wheatley said he does not see why the Chiefs should not be competitive throughout 2009.
The Chiefs kick off the season with Graceville at Northview High School in Bratt on Sept. 4.