08/14/05 — ECU completes first scrimmage

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ECU completes first scrimmage

Published in Sports on August 14, 2005 2:15 AM

Courtesy ECU Sports Information

GREENVILLE -- Three East Carolina quarterbacks combined on 28-of-55 passing for 310 yards while the Pirates' defensive pressure forced five sacks to highlight ECU's first intra-squad scrimmage of fall preseason camp Saturday afternoon at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium.

Unlike traditional scrimmages, first-year head coach Skip Holtz guided both units through 11 10-play possessions which featured competition between all levels of the Pirates' preseason depth chart.

Junior quarterback James Pinkney led the top offensive unit to scores on all three of its series, connecting with Bobby Good and Brandon Fractious on touchdown passes of 43 and 24 yards, respectively, before using the third drive to set up Ben Hartman's 34-yard field goal. In all, Pinkney completed eight-of-14 passes for 113 yards during the afternoon.

"I thought James played well today," said Holtz. "There were a lot of bright spots in his play and he made some pretty good calls at the line which allowed him to march the offense down the field efficiently. We put a red shirt on him so that he wouldn't get hit. I think that James proved how tough he was last year and wanted him to get a feel for what was going on."

True freshmen Rob Kass and Brett Clay experienced the bulk of the action running ECU's second and third units. Kass completed 10-of-22 passes for a game-high 132 yards while Clay added 10 completions on 19 tosses for 65 yards and picked up an additional 26 rushing yards on nine carries.

"Both freshmen quarterbacks stood in there and took their licks today," Holtz added. "I don't think that I can ever question their toughness after their play today. Right now they both have a chance to be outstanding quarterbacks at ECU."

Senior linebacker Josh Chilsom, senior safety Jamar Flournoy and freshman Pierre Bell each recorded five tackles to lead a defensive effort which netted six stops for lost yardage and five fumble recoveries. Chilsom, freshman lineman Matt Newman, sophomore lineman Craig Harper and sophomore linebacker Zach Slate each logged a solo sack.

Sophomore tailback Chris Johnson topped all rushers with 39 yards on five attempts while Fractious, a junior college transfer, contributed 37 yards on the ground to go along with his TD catch. Sophomore Juwon Crowell led all receivers with four catches for 44 yards.

"I was really pleased with the effort and how far along our team has come," Holtz summed up. "Today's scrimmage was designed for us to primarily evaluate the second and third teams. They took 95 of the 120 plays so that we could try and determine who we will continue to work with this year and who we will redshirt for next year."

The Pirates will take a day off from the field today before returning to the Cliff Moore Practice Facility Monday for their second two-a-day schedule of camp. ECU will conduct the pair of workouts beginning at 8:45 a.m. and 3:50 p.m.