It was quite the boys athletic season for the Mount Vernon Tigers last season. What ended with an appearance in the state basketball championship game in March began with a memorable football season.

Now what do the Tigers do for an encore?

In his first full season as head coach, Josh Finney guided Mount Vernon to an 11-1 record, the most wins in a season since before World War II.

With 15 starters returning, Mount Vernon has high expectations and begins the year ranked No. 9 in the Preseason Class 3A Poll.

Kason Pletcher ran the slot-T offense to near-perfection in 2017 en route to earning district MVP honors. Another playmaker or two will need to show up this season to compliment Pletcher.

Defensively, Mount Vernon brings back all but two starters from last year. The duo of lineman Daniel Arnold and linebacker Nathan Smith will present significant roadblocks to opposing offenses in 2018.

Realignment wasn't kind, however, to Mount Vernon. The new District 7-3A Division I features Atlanta, which drops from Class 4A, along with area powers Jefferson and Hughes Springs.

Mount Vernon won't sneak up on anyone this season, so the Tigers have yet another challenge in front of them. Preseason Class 3A Poll

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