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Change of plans

Impromptu scrimmage benefits Bruins, Rams

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SNOW HILL — Visiting Beddingfield High’s varsity and junior varsity football squads found the end zone more frequently, but “it went pretty well” was the assessment of first-year head coaches Carl Smith of the Bruins and Jason Wilson of host Greene Central for Wednesday evening’s hastily planned scrimmage.

“The jayvees were very surprising,” Smith noted. “We have still got stuff to clean up, but we are going in the right direction.”

Assessed the Rams’ Wilson: “The things that we thought we would do good, we did. The areas where we felt like we would struggle, we did. It was what it was supposed to be — the very first scrimmage.”

For the Bruins, quarterback Garritt Harris tossed a touchdown pass to Davallice Rasberry and Raekwon Batts tallied on a running play of some 40 yards. Smith was pleased with the running of Jah’quez Artis.

“The defense was very good,” Smith reported. “It was pretty stout all day.”

Beddingfield’s rookie head coach singled out the work of Darryll Malachi, Keydrin Parker and Cedric Pope and described Batts as a force in the middle.

During 10-minute varsity and jayvee segments, Beddingfield unveiled the power-I offense.

“We got everything we wanted for the most part,” Smith reviewed. “It’s now about executing. We’ve got to be more physical, especially up front, in executing it.”

Beddingfield’s downer was an injury to star senior Jalil Hutcherson, an offensive and defensive mainstay.

“He banged up a shoulder pretty good,” Smith reported, “but we do not know the extent. We find out today (Thursday).”

Smith saw the Rams as a good team with a solid structure and system and was especially impressed with wide receiver Zakvil Smith.

Zakvil hauled in a TD pass from quarterback Cole Dawson. Wilson also saw strides in Dawson’s leadership. Jamarcus Holmes stood out in the offensive line. Running back Knowledge Branch, touted as the Rams’ top offensive threat, saw limited action.

“We want to limit his touches,” Wilson explained, “and we also want to make sure his back-ups are where they need to be.”

Greene Central’s first-year head coach praised his defense, admitting two blown assignments led to Beddingfield scores.

“We did a good job of matching their force with our force,” Wilson declared.

Greene Central’s head coach predicted a “good season” for Beddingfield.

“Their defense flew to the ball very well,” Wilson described. “They probably impressed with the defense more than the offense.”

The Rams of the 2-A Eastern Carolina Conference scrimmage Manteo, SouthWest Edgecombe, Farmville Central and Tarboro in the Tarboro Jamboree on Friday before kicking off the regular season at 4-A South Central on Friday, Aug. 23.

The preparation emphasis, said Wilson, will be upon continuity in the offensive line and developing “nice, clean, crisp” execution of the 8-10 fundamental plays.

The Bruins now ready for a home test against 3-A Southern Wayne in their regular-season opener, also on Friday, Aug. 23.

Regarding the benefits of the scrimmage, Wilson responded: “Any time you go out there and tackle somebody besides your teammates, it’s very beneficial.”

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