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Thursday, Aug. 25, 2016

Area teams tune up with jamboree

Sunday, August 31, 2003

East prairie's Dean Hedge (65) hits NMCC quarterback Trevor Jones.
NEW MADRID - The Sikeston Bulldogs football team competed in their seventh annual jamboree scrimmage on Friday at New Madrid County Central High School.

In addition to the Bulldogs and host school NMCC, Jennings and East Prairie also competed.

Each team started at the opponents' 40-yard line and were awarded 12 plays. If the offensive team couldn't get a first down then the ball was reset at the 40.

Per usual, Sikeston head coach Charlie Vickery had one main goal in mind.

"No injuries," he said. "That was the number one thing that we got out of it, we came out with no injuries."

But it was also a chance to see what the team looked like against different jerseys for the first time this year.

"We were able to get out here and play against somebody else," said Vickery. "You know, we got some jitters out and got to play under the lights in a game situation at a faster pace. I think we got accomplished everything that we wanted to get out of it."

Sikeston opened up with Jennings. The Warriors fumbled on four of their first five plays, three of which the Bulldogs recovered.

The Bulldogs kept Jennings out of the end zone during the series.

The Bulldogs kept things pretty vanilla on offense but were still able to move the ball effectively against all three teams.

Against Jennings, the Bulldogs scored on their fourth play when Scotty Keenan caught a 35-yard pass from Stephen Miller.

Vickery was pleased with how his new signal-caller looked in his first "test."

"I thought he did a very good job," said Vickery. "He threw some nice balls and did some nice things. I was pleased."

The Bulldogs scored later in the series when Jacob Priday rumbled in from 15 yards out.

While the Bulldogs were playing Jennings, NMCC and East Prairie were scrimmaging on the other side of the field.

NMCC scored on their fourth play on a pass to Mackel Kimble. East Prairie was unable to score in their 12 plays.

"I thought everything went well," said NMCC coach Steve Rogers. "We got everybody in and didn't have any injuries. We had a few pleasant surprises. This is a good kickoff to our season. Hopefully it will be an enjoyable year for us."

Sikeston faced off with East Prairie on the second scrimmage. The Bulldogs scored on their first play, a 40-yard run by sophomore Travis Hudson.

The Bulldogs didn't score on the final 11 plays.

East Prairie reached the end zone three times against the Bulldog defense.

Paris Tipler scored on a short run, Anthony Smith had 15-yard TD reception and Smith scored again on a 40-yard reverse.

"At times we had pretty good execution, then there were times where we had very poor execution," said East Prairie head coach Brett Blackman. "We can't execute great some of the time -- we need to execute great all of the time. Our defense made a lot of big plays against all three teams. We had fumble recoveries, interceptions and some big hits."

On the other end of the field, NMCC scored on its fifth play, a 40-yard pass to Kimble. The Eagles didn't score again.

Jennings was unable to score in only five plays against the NMCC defense.

In the third scrimmage, Sikeston met NMCC. The Eagles scored on their fourth play on a short pass to Kimble. Four plays later, Remond Willis scored on a short run. The Eagles scored one last TD on a 28-yard pass to Vaughn Shepherd.

"We played a little better than what I expected, but a lot of it is the caliber of the teams too," said Rogers. "Jennings is young, East Prairie is young, and Sikeston has had some guys injured and stuff. You can't really tell anything. I thought we looked great in the jamboree last year, and we ended up 2-8. What do I know?"

Sikeston was able to punch it in the end zone twice against NMCC. A long Keenan reception set up a Nathan Eaves run, where he fumbled, but recovered in the end zone for the score.

On the Bulldogs' next series, Priday broke off a 36-yard run up the middle which set up Wayne Guthrie's 2-yard TD plunge.

"I thought the line did a good job," said Vickery. "I think we need to get more physical but I think that will come."

On the other end of the field, East Prairie scored on their second play against Jennings, but they didn't score again.

Jennings was able to finally score on their 11th play of the scrimmage against the Eagles.

"We've got a lot to work on, both sides of the ball," said Blackman. "We faced a little bit of adversity too. We didn't gain very much against New Madrid, but we came back against Sikeston and against Jennings and drove the ball."