Tigers drive toward season opener | RecordCourier.com

Tigers drive toward season opener

It wasn't a perfect performance. Then again, the Douglas High football team wasn't looking for perfection but rather a measuring gauge Saturday during its preseason scrimmage at home against McQueen.

The Tigers and Lancers played on even terms during the 90-minute varsity scrimmage at Keith Roman Field — every bit as close as their 2016 season opener in Reno in which Douglas won 20-14 in overtime.

Nobody was keeping score this time, though. The Tigers were simply looking to prepare for the start of their new season this Saturday against Rigby in Pocatello, Idaho.

"We have a lot of film to watch," said quarterback Hunter Hickey, who threw two touchdown passes during the scrimmage. "Today was mostly a huge learning day."

For a young Douglas team that features a number of new faces at positions across the board, this was a good measuring stick against a different opponent.

"I thought we had a good day," senior defensive tackle Austin Aiken said. "From June until now, we've only been hitting against ourselves. Today, we had a chance to hit with new people, so that was great."

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Douglas coach Ernie Monfiletto described the test as a good one for two teams that qualified for the 2016 postseason (Douglas and McQueen have no regular season meeting scheduled this year). The coach shared some of his thoughts with the team immediately afterward.

"That's a pretty good football team over there," Monfiletto said, motioning toward the McQueen side of the field. "I'm excited about what we did out here today."

Under the scrimmage format, teams alternated between offense and defense during 10-minute running clock periods. Each new series began from the offensive team's own 40.

Hickey and the Tigers started with back-to-back touchdown drives against McQueen's first defensive unit. The Tigers only needed four plays to cover 60 yards on their first possession, as Hickey completed a 16-yard pass to Jack Overton and moments later threw a 44-yard touchdown strike to Devon Bryan on a sideline pattern. Next came a nine-play drive that culminated when Andrew Williams made a juggling 21-yard touchdown reception in the end zone. Hickey was 5-for-9 for 117 yards during those two drives.

The Lancers showed some offensive potential of their own when junior quarterback Dominique Stallworth took his team's opening play 34 yards on a read-option play. Seven plays after that, Stallworth threw a 1-yard touchdown pass to Kaileigh Ward.

Later, he Tigers sputtered in their second appearance on the field. Part of that was due to a largely retooled offensive unit, including a brand new offensive line.

"We've got to execute better on offense," Hickey said. "They did some things we weren't expecting, but I think we will learn from this."

The second offensive unit also produced two touchdowns. Junior quarterback Chris Flores powered for 20 yards on a keeper and scored on a 10-yard run during eight-play drive. Later, Flores threw a 20-yard touchdown pass to Luke Gansberg.

For McQueen, which opens its season Friday night at home against Lassen (Susanville, Calif.), senior quarterback Matthew White ran for one touchdown and threw for another.

Defensively for Douglas, Jack Overton had an interception and Ryan recovered a fumble. Taylor Washam had one tackle behind the line of scrimmage and Aiken had another.

"We were tearing it up inside," said Aiken, a first-team all-league defensive tackle in 2016. "We've got good size inside; Alex (Rice) and I are both about the same size — we both go 280 pounds — so I think that's going to be one of our strengths. We've just got to do a better job getting to the outside on our coverage of screens and things like that."

Douglas will face a formidable test Saturday at 10 a.m. against the Rigby Trojans as part of the Rocky Mountain Rumble at Holt Arena on the Idaho State University campus. Rigby has a veteran-laden squad coming back from a 2016 season when it qualified for the Idaho 5A playoffs.

"We've been looking forward to this for a long time," Hickey said. "We're looking forward to playing in Idaho against a very good team."

ROSTER

1 Maverick Duffy, sr., 5-7, 160

2 Cole Kudrna, jr., 6-0, 175

3 Devon Ryan, jr., 6-2, 185

4 Nathan Cruz, jr., 5-10, 180

4 Jacob McNamarra, sr., 6-0, 185

7 Chris Flores, jr., 6-1, 195

9 Joseph Longre, jr., 6-0, 175

10 Claudio Magana, jr., 6-0, 185

11 Andrew Hawn, jr., 5-10, 160

12 Matthew Shick, jr., 5-10, 180

13 Kane Hoyopatubbi, sr., 5-10, 165

14 Christian Gray, sr., 6-0, 170

16 Ryan McNalley, jr., 5-10, 160

17 Alexander Hawn, jr., 5-10, 160

18 Hunter Hickey, sr., 5-11, 170

20 Josh Shaw, jr., 5-8, 175

21 Luke Gansberg, jr., 6-1, 170

22 Dakota Lowden, sr., 5-9, 180

23 Jack Overton, sr., 5-9, 170

24 Gabe Wetzel, jr., 5-8, 170

25 Benjamin Miller, sr., 6-0, 170

26 Jacob Toreson, jr., 5-9, 160

28 Andrew Williams, sr., 5-11, 160

32 Jayden Foster, sr., 5-11, 185

42 Cooper Clark, jr., 6-2, 185

45 Byron Fair, jr., 6-0, 170

50 Paul Costello, sr., 5-10, 190

51 Chance Goheen, jr., 6-1, 195

52 Anthony Biasotti, jr., 6-0, 190

53 Jacob Lynch, jr., 6-0, 245

55 Anthony Munoz, jr., 6-0, 230

56 Ryan McIntosh, sr., 6-0, 260

57 Christopher Merritt, sr., 5-7, 165

58 Gabriel Wood, jr., 5-8, 180

60 Jose Ramirez, jr., 6-0, 225

62 Gabriel Hirt, jr., 6-0, 200

63 Taylor Washam, sr., 6-1, 230

65 Kadan Hall, jr., 5-10, 200

66 Cody Freitas, sr., 6-0, 210

70 Jonathon Tobias, sr., 6-2, 215

71 Diego Solis, jr., 5-10, 189

72 Austin Aiken, sr., 6-2, 280

75 Andrew Browning, jr., 6-3, 240

77 Ulises Gonzales, jr., 6-3, 270

78 James Monroe, sr., 6-1, 200

82 Michael Biaggini, jr., 6-1, 165

85 Dylan McNalley, jr., 5-10, 160

86 Zach Romero, sr., 6-4, 210

99 Andrew Andrews, jr., 6-3, 190

Coaching staff:

Ernie Monfiletto, head coach

Joe Andrews, offensive line/special teams

Rick McGuire, defensive backs/wide receivers

Rod Smalley, defensive coordinator

Stormy Herald, defensive line/running backs

Ollie Herald, linebackers

Marc Walling, video specialist