Offensive line, quarterback, linebackers lead Gators into scrimmage

MATCHUP: Lakeview Gators vs. Lakeside Warriors

WHERE/WHEN: Friday, 6 p.m., Lakeside HS, Sibley

RECORDS: Preseason scrimmage

LAST GAME: Last game was in the 2020 season for both teams

NOTES: Both teams have small rosters (Lakeview has 37 players) so the scrimmage will be more of a practice format. The teams will start with an inside run session, then a 7-on-7 session, then a couple series of offensive and defensive plays in a full team format, hoping to keep both teams healthy …not playing junior high football last season, to help develop depth, was a setback for all high school programs and particularly at smaller schools …the Gators are looking for playmakers on the outside who can catch the 50-50 ball. The coaches feel good about their inside running game and quarterback play … Lakeview is having competition to find a kicker that may continue into the season.

LAKEVIEW COACH BRANDON HELMS SAYS: “I’ve been pleased with our young offensive linemen. We’ve got all juniors and one sophomore up front and they have really done a good job coming together. I’m really excited about Dillon Pikes at quarterback. He has some work to do in the passing game, but as far as being a leader, and being willing to stick it in there and get a tough couple yards, I’ve been impressed. I’m excited about our linebackers. We have three solid kids (Matt Howard, Kaleb Collins and Raymond Connell) who have a knack of finding the ball and they love to tackle. That’s the kind of aggression you don’t see nearly as much as you’d like these days, and we’ve got three of those guys.”

NEXT UP: The Gators square off against parish rival St. Mary’s at 6 o’clock next Friday night at Northwestern’s Turpin Stadium. Lakeview kicks off the regular season on Sept. 3 at Tensas Parish. The Gators were slated to open against Ringgold, but staff changes at that school led to cancellation of that game.