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Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014

Teams see first action in jamboree

Sunday, August 29, 2004

(Photo)
Sikeston's Felante Larry hauls in a pass while NMCC's Eugene Cooper defends.
EAST PRAIRIE - Friday night marked the first time high school football teams could square off against someone wearing a different jersey as Sikeston, New Madrid County Central and Perryville visited East Prairie for a jamboree scrimmage.

Each team ran 12 plays on offense and defense against each other in the full contact event.

In Sikeston's first scrimmage against NMCC, the Eagles were on offense first. The Bulldog defense seemed up to the challenge as they held the Eagles out of the end zone for the entire 12 plays.

NMCC converted one first down and turned the ball over once.

"I was pleasantly pleased defensively," said Sikeston coach Jerry Dement. "We've got some things we can do and some kids that can get to the football. We've got a long way to go before the first ballgame but our kids are ready to step up and do it. We've worked three weeks to this point and we'll take the good and bad from tonight and build on the good things and correct the bad things and be ready to go next Friday."

On Sikeston's first offensive possession, the Bulldogs scored on their fourth play, a 28-yard run by Felante Larry. Sikeston didn't score on their final plays the rest of the scrimmage.

At the same time on the north side of the field, East Prairie scrimmaged Perryville. The Eagles didn't score in their 12 plays. They converted two first downs and had one interception.

Perryville scored on their second play from scrimmage when Matt Unterreiner rambled 40 yards off tackle to the end zone. Perryville threw an interception three plays into their next series. They were able to tack on another touchdown three plays later when quarterback Cory Buerck hit Travis Brown for a short pass.

"The biggest thing that impressed me was we had slim penalties," said East Prairie coach Jason Aycock. "This was actually our first live scrimmage and I told the guys before the game was to play disciplined ball, line up correctly and keep slim penalties. That's the biggest thing that I'm proud of right now."

Sikeston scrimmaged Perryville in their second session. Perryville scored on their 10th play when Unterreiner ran it in from three yards out. Sikeston's Brujae Lane intercepted a pass on Perryville's final play of the scrimmage.

Sikeston scored on their second play against Perryville when Bryce Wibbenmeyer hit Larry for a 35-yard TD pass. The Bulldogs didn't score again the rest of the scrimmage.

Wibbenmeyer, Sikeston's first year starting quarterback, threw some nice deep balls and ran the offense efficiently. Sophomore backup Joey Williams also took several snaps during the day.

"I thought Bryce looked decent -- he did some nice things," said Dement. "He's steady and he doesn't make many mistakes and he's got a good command of the offense. He's going to be a fine one. Joey's young and he just needs more reps. It's his first ballgame ever at the varsity level so he's bound to be nervous. I saw some good things in him too."

On the other side of the field NMCC was taking on East Prairie. The host school Eagles scored on their ninth play from scrimmage when Dez Johnson found Anthony Smith for a 10-yard touchdown reception. Two plays later, Smith found the end zone again on a 40-yard run up the middle.

NMCC scored on their sixth play when Terrance Smith ran it in from six yards out. The Eagles didn't score again the rest of the scrimmage.

NMCC, also starting new quarterbacks, rotated in four different signal callers on the evening.

"I'm pleased right now with our quarterback situation -- we're truly about four deep and we'll evaluate those guys a little further off tonight," said NMCC coach Arlen Pixley.

"Jordan Kimball throws it real well, Sherman Newsome runs and throws it well. Colt Pruitt transferred in from Sikeston and he does some things for us well. We've got another kid named Laterrance Newsome. He brings some running to the table and he's got a strong arm. He's just a little underdeveloped technically. I'm not ranking anyone, but it's been a luxury to have four quarterbacks deep at the varsity level."

In the final scrimmage of the day, Sikeston took on East Prairie. The Bulldogs had two interceptions during the scrimmage, but they found the end zone once, with Gerald Winfield scoring on a 4-yard pass from Williams.

East Prairie scored on their 11th play against the Bulldogs as Smith plowed in from two yards out.

"We had some good and bad -- that's the way these things always work," said Dement. "I was pleased with our enthusiasm and our intensity level. We've got to get people in the right position at the right time and execute better offensively. I thought we did some nice things, but we're not ready to click yet. Hopefully we'll put that together and move forward from here. I saw some good things -- not too many turnovers."

NMCC took on Perryville in their final scrimmage of the day. The Pirates scored on their first play from scrimmage as Buerck hit Greg Wibbenmeyer for a 40-yard touchdown. The Pirates didn't score the rest of the scrimmage.

NMCC turned the ball over with an interception and didn't reach the end zone against the Pirates.

"Our offensive line, we've got to sure that up," said Pixley. "That's kind of been a hole for us. We graduated that whole offensive line last year so these guys have got to step up and start playing. We're still looking for a tight end/slot back that can catch a football. We've got some greasy hands at that spot. We're a little bit behind fundamentally than I'd like to be right now. All my expectations are always going to be that we can do things better."

As is always a priority in preseason scrimmages, both teams were happy to come out of the even injury-free.

That's always a positive," said Dement. "We had a cramp or two but I think we're alright. I've just got to look at the film. Right now I look for assignments and intensity level. I didn't think we were as fundamental as we needed to be. I thought our pass protection, both line and backs, needs to improve."