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Rebels prepare for season with scrimmage

Thorsby football held a scrimmage on Aug. 14 as part of its preparation for the season opener Aug. 23 against Jemison.

The scrimmage was played under the lights and in front of a large crowd of supporters, which will be similar conditions to what the players will experience in the opening game.

According to head coach Daryl Davis, you don’t know how players are going to react the first time they walk out under the lights with the crowd noise. It can be an overwhelming situation and could take a couple of possessions before they settle in to the flow of the game. He hopes that the scrimmage will help eliminate a lot of that.

“It was nice to get on the field and get the whole feel of it,” junior Jacob Lockhart said.

The varsity and junior varsity each played 20-minute sessions.

Due to the lessened time of the scrimmage format, players were tasked with making the most of their time on the field.

“You’ve got to make the most of it,” Lockhart said.

Thorsby’s offense moved the ball well throughout the scrimmage and looked comfortable with the play calls that were coming in from the sideline.

Starting quarterback Christian Fortner connected with Lockhart for the first score of the varsity session and followed it up with a pair of touchdown runs on the next couple of drives.

“The [offensive] line and receivers did a real good job blocking on the sweeps,” Lockhart said.

Tyler Jackson also ran for a score, as he turned on the burners and split the safeties on his way to the end zone.

Chase Birchfield also contributed to the ground attack with a couple of lengthy runs of his own.

A highlight on defense was when Tyler Ray intercepted a pass from Fortner that put a halt to a promising Thorsby drive.

“They’re working hard and getting better every day,” Davis said. “If we can continue to do that, I think we’ll be good.”

One of the areas that Davis is still looking for improvement in the remaining days of fall practice is the team’s conditioning.

As is the case with many teams, proper conditioning becomes a factor late in games, especially with the high humidity in the early portion of the season.

“From the first week of practice to now, we’ve come a long way [in terms of conditioning],” Lockhart said. “By the time it’s game day, we’ll be prepared. It will be here before you know it.”