Under the lights
That what the Morris football team shouted in closing it’s annual Maroon and Gold scrimmage this year. After about an hour and 20 minutes of first-team/second-team competiton, the Redskins are less than a week away from its opener with the Indians.
“That’s the goal. I’m sure Minooka is saying the same thing,” Morris coach Alan Thorson said. “They want to beat us and we want to beat them. There’s a lot of buildup to the first game. It’s been a great summer and now it’s time for the kids to play the game.”
Morris senior Jake Hogan said that the Redskins are counting the days.
“We’re looking forward to it,” he said of the opening game of the season. “We know they are going to be a tough opponent, but so are we. I think it’s going to be a good game.”
The Morris kids got their Friday preparation done under the lights as always and ran through about every facet of the game in front of a decent home crowd.
“It’s a completely different energy when we come out and scrimmage like this under the lights,” Morris coach Alan Thorson said. “The kids were fired up, at least as much as you can for getting ready to play yourself.”
The Morris kickers had several PAT and field goal attempts from each end to start and then Preston Miracle punted six times into the north end. The kicking session ended with both Fernando Del Toro and Jake Reed kicking PATs and Del Toro then concluded with a 41-yard field goal through the north uprights.
The first team defense took the field against the second-team offense and dominated the way you’d suppose.
“That first team should be better,” Thorson said. “We’re more or less looking and making sure the guys are in the right positions.”
Morris backup quarterback Matt Darlington competed 4-of-8 passes — his longest going for 17 yards, but he was also sacked six times.
“We looked awesome, no doubt,” Morris nose tackle Collin Grogan said. “I like playing defense because I’m fast and make tackles.”
The Morris offense scored five times against the second-string defense. Reese Sobol had a 12-yard TD run, Jeff Perry a 78 yard TD run and Grogan an 80-yard run.
“Man, I was gassed on that one,” Grogan said. “I like it. We have three returning starters at running back, two returning receivers, a new quarterback and the line in getting better every day.”
Sobol had the other two TD runs from 18 and 20 yards.
However, as much as anything, Thorson appreciated the officials talking to the kids in the postgame huddle.
“Nobody got hurt and that’s the most important thing, but the other important thing is the officials talking to the kids,” he said. “He said they looked good and also told them what they’d be watching out for this year. Things like the horse collar and leading with their helmets on tackles.
Still, it’s not going to quite match the intensity of things next Friday night in Minooka.
“Minooka brought a huge crowd here last year and we’re hoping to see the whole town of Morris over there this year,” Thorson said. “We’re going to go over there and hopefully play a good game.”