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By GOOSE LINDSAY
After losing more than half the starters on both sides of the football, Rockwood head coach John Webb knows his team has to grow up in a hurry if they expect to leave Oneida on Friday, Aug. 22 with a season-opening victory.
Webb spent most of last week working on the passing game as the Tigers traveled to Cumberland County on Monday and Stone Memorial on Tuesday before hosting Stone Memorial and Bledsoe County on Thursday in 7-on-7 passing drills.
“This week has helped us tremendously,” Webb said after Thursday’s scrimmage. “This is exactly what our team needs and that’s experience. We’re not necessarily a young team, but we have some players that need some experience in game type situations.
“This week helped us recognize who our receivers will be and we had a good rotation at linebacker. We still need to narrow our secondary a bit, but this has helped us.”
During Thursday’s play, Rockwood was without its No. 1 quarterback Tyler Parsons. That left the majority of the work to back-up Garrison Nuckols. Nuckols completed 9 of 27 passes on the night for 86 yards with one touchdown.
Freshman backup Cameron Webster completed 3 of 5 passes for 43 yards.
Parsons did compete in Rockwood’s scrimmages on Monday and Tuesday and Webb was fairly pleased with all of his signal callers.
“We didn’t do as well tonight as we did the first two nights but they’ve done a good job this week,” Webb said. “Parsons was solid but I thought Garrison put some pressure on him.”
Rockwood’s receiving corp was led on Thursday by TE Jeromy Hagermaker with four catches for 41 yards and one TD. Josh Brock was next in line with three catches for 27 yards while Logan Dean added a pair of receptions for 42 yards.
Caleb Cooper, Ronnie Dyer and Jeff Inman had one catch each.
Defensively, Dillon Deardorff had an interception while Jeff Inman broke up a pair of passes.
Rockwood will spend this week working on conditioning before the Tigers take the field in pads next Monday.
“We’ve had a good summer,” Webb said. “I think the kids have worked hard and we’ve had good numbers.
“Now it’s all about getting experience and using practice to get that experience. We’ve just got to keep working hard and we’ve got to stay healthy.”
The Tigers have three scrimmages and a jamboree scheduled before their season-opener at Oneida.
On Friday, Aug. 1, the Tigers will be at Stone Memorial. On Thursday, Aug. 7, the Tigers will host Coalfield and Pigeon Forge in a three-way scrimmage then Rockwood travels to Upperman on Thursday, Aug. 14 to take on the Bees.
On Friday, Aug. 15, the Tigers will host the 2008 Roane County Football Jamboree.