East Robertson overcame an early deficit for a 6-3 victory over Springfield in 7-on-7 action Thursday morning.
Quarterback Drake Alsup showed why he was picked to replace expected starter Cameron Swift, who was lost to an ACL injury in May. Alsup, a former receiver, threw three touchdowns for the Indians.
“With Drake stepping into the QB spot, these 7-on-7’s are going to be a good experience for him,” East Robertson coach Atlee Pond said. “We still have a lot to learn. We still have a lot to fix. (But) I think they came out and they competed.”
Springfield QB Kevontez Hudson gave his team a 3-1 lead with three consecutive scoring drives, including long touchdown passes to Gabe Kelly, Ze’Rel Boyd and Mikie Neal. Cale Jones, the team’s backup QB, and Kevontay White also saw time at receiver and are expected to make an impact in the passing game.
“When you can get the ball to your athletes, that’s just Kevontez knowing what to do and getting the ball out quickly,” Springfield Dustin Wilson said. “Some really positive stuff from Hudson today.”
Alsup later found receivers Coleman Bonds, Dylan Stroud and Taylor Groves for scores to even the contest at three. Those drives came after Alsup’s first possession ended in a three-and-out.
“I’m rooting for (Alsup),” Wilson said. “I hated to hear the news of Swift. I think it’s good that (Pond) has another athlete that he can put in there.”
Bonds relieved Alsup behind center and gave the Indians a 4-3 lead with a touchdown pass to sophomore Matthew Jarrett. Freshman signal caller Collin Cook later hit Shaun Groves and Cam Cope for the final two scores of the day.
“We have a lot of veteran receivers,” Pond said. “But we also have a lot of young guys with talent. I think once they all understand what we’re trying to do, we’ll be just fine (on offense).”
The preseason is helping Wilson sort out his inexperienced depth chart. 27 of Springfield’s 68 players are freshman, and the Yellow Jackets have just seven seniors.
“Literally 40 percent of our team is freshmen,” Wilson said. “The senior class is small. They’re all phenomenal kids and will probably end up playing both ways. There’s just not many of them.”
East Robertson and Springfield will both compete in a 7-on-7 tournament at Clarksville Northwest this Wednesday, July 17.
“A lot of the teams that we’re playing (in 7-on-7 games) are bigger schools,” Pond said. “I want to play Springfield, Greenbrier – teams with a lot of athletes that can fly around. This is the fun part of the game.”