Players throw around the pigskin
By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on June 22, 2011 1:47 PM
SEVEN SPRINGS -- Kids throwing a football.
To the casual observer, that is all the first session of summer passing league may have looked like on Tuesday evening at Spring Creek High School.
The running and gunning looked like so much more for the coaches in attendance.
"It gives us a chance to look at some guys and see what we have at the quarterback position," said Gators head coach Aaron Sanders. "Also, we get to show some of the younger guys a few basics of what we are going to be doing in our offense at the varsity level."
Along with Spring Creek, Southern Wayne, Goldsboro, Charles B. Aycock and Rosewood also attended the first session of the summer. Eastern Wayne was slated to participate, but declined.
As expected, the defense was well ahead of the offense the first night of the summer.
Rosewood opened play with an impressive drive that was capped when Taylor McGill completed a touchdown pass on third down. A returning varsity starter, McGill shared attempts with Will Winslow for the Eagles.
Spring Creek split its snaps between several signal callers with Mathew Ponce, a former offensive lineman, taking a slim majority.
Southern Wayne was led by Sam Ferrell at quarterback. Ferrell led the Saints to a touchdown on their first offensive possession.
"It's important for us to look at some of these young guys," said Southern Wayne assistant coach Jeremy Joyner. "We still have a lot of varsity guys that are doing other things like baseball and summer camps. But the nice thing is it gives the young guys a chance to compete."
Goldsboro was also missing several key offensive pieces on the night, including projected varsity starter at quarterback Julius Murphy, who was participating in an individual quarterback camp. Shawn Ham did a nice job filling in for Murphy.
"I thought Ham made a lot of good reads," said Cougars assistant coach Danny Merritt. "Even the passes he didn't complete, I felt like he made the right throw which was good to see."
The highlight of the evening was made by Aycock receiver Preston Tucker, who rolled to his left and snared a one-handed grab out of the air and turned into the end zone on the teams' second series.
During the summer passing league, the teams play 30-minute sessions and then switch opponents. Each scrimmage is played on a 40-yard field and the offensive team always goes toward the end zone. Because its an offseason workout no score is kept.
Lightning forced the teams to cut their first session approximately an hour short and the squads were dismissed to their busses at 7:15 p.m.
All six teams from Wayne County will meet again next Tuesday at Eastern Wayne at 6 p.m.