It was a fun night at Putnam City Stadium Friday watching the Southmoore/Yukon/Putnam City scrimmage. One of the better, more polished scrimmages I’ve seen in a while. I’ll have plenty of coverage in Saturday’s paper, but here are a few quick items that really stuck out to me.
-PC linebacker/running back Desmond Tilly hurt his left knee in the final few minutes of the game. Pirate folks don’t seem to think it’s serious, but it will likely require an MRI once the swelling goes down. The Pirates don’t have a ton of depth, so losing Tilly for any significant amount of time would be bad. He was flying around making plays at outside linebacker and is a great complement to MLB Elie Rushing. Tilly was also running the ball hard backing up Casey Curtis. With Curtis and Tilly each playing both sides of the ball, you need them both at RB to help keep the other fresh.
-Yukon fans might have noticed that Derek Deeds was icing his shoulder at the end of the night. He told me afterward that it was nothing more than a muscle spasm and he’d be fine. Just like Tilly, Deeds is a guy Yukon wouldn’t want to lose. They’re so young at receiver that his presence there is valuable. And he’s an anchor on the back end of the defense as well.
-In other injury news, Southmoore RB Andrew Long sat out Friday’s action, but only as a precaution, coach Chris Jensen said. Essentially, the SaberCats know what they’re going to get from Long, so there was no need to risk getting him hurt.
-On a sidenote to that, Friday was my first chance to see Karltrell Henderson. The junior had a couple big games at the end of last season to climb up over the 1,000-yard mark. He’s a beast of a runner. Punishes people and has decent moves to go along with it. It’ll be fun to watch those two guys share a backfield this year.
-I know Southmoore QB Tre Edwards has some doubters simply because of his height — probably 5-10 if you count the mohawk — but the kid is a confident player who throws the ball well. He can run the offense, move in the pocket and find the open man. He might not make D-I coaches drool, but he’s going to win a lot of games at Southmoore.
-Speaking of short guys, Yukon is running out some little dudes at receiver this year as they try to replace four of their top five from last season. But QB Corben Jones was excited with their performance Friday, especially when protection broke down. They were making good decisions in situations the team hasn’t worked on yet in practice, and Jones was happy to see that.
-The Millers are auditioning about four different players at running back, and might use multiple guys throughout the season. It was tough to tell a lot Friday, because Yukon only had a couple of regular starters available on the offensive line. The replacements held their own, but with their regular starting five, Yukon will have one of the better O-lines around, and that will certainly make life easier for the RBs.
-Lastly, I was impressed in my first chance to see PC quarterback Devin White in live action. Seeing him at practice last week, he certainly looks the part of a good high school quarterback at about 6-1 and probably 195 pounds. On Friday, he showed that he has a good, accurate arm, and he moves really well. Combine that with Curtis — who had some crazy good runs Friday — and the Pirates should be in good shape offensively. They are using a lot of new guys on the O-line, but they seemed to hold up well.
– Scott Wright, firstname.lastname@example.org