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ALTON - There is excitement in Alton High School football Redbird ranks this season.

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Alton has faced some tough seasons in recent years, but under new head coach David Parker, offensive line/offensive coordinator Cody Markle, the rest of the coaching staff, and an excited squad, they are hoping to change the culture in 2022.

Coach Markle said Keith Gilchrese, Brandon Hayes, Jaxon Sheets, and Graham McAfoos have emerged as early leaders for the Redbirds and have inspired fellow teammates to strive for great things ahead.

Parker was previously an assistant football coach at St. Louis University High and Webster High School. He helped lead Hazelwood East High as their defensive coordinator to an MSHSAA Class 5A State Championship.

Alton High Athletic Director Chris Kusnerick said Coach Parker has loads of enthusiasm for young people and wants to see them become successful adults and football is a great way for him to bridge that gap on their road to future success.

Coach Markle said the squad has bought in this year more than he has ever seen even during his own days as a Redbird player.

“We are more of a family than anything,” he said. “We trust one another and we give it everything we have every day.”

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