Though Coach Ryan Sulkowski down played the importance of the spring game against Ocala Trinity Catholic, the fact that the Wildcats came away with a 27-24 victory in the contest can’t be ignored. The Celtics were state champs in 2010 and made it deep into the playoffs last season.
For the coaching staff, last Thursday evening’s exhibition game was about evaluating the players, seeing what needed to be worked on over the summer and finding out who “can play on Friday nights.” But for the players it was a football game. Pure and simple.
They played with intensity. They swarmed to the ball. Though they made mistakes, for the most part, they gave the big crowd in the stands plenty to cheer about.
Corey Lawler had a good night under center. Lawler was 7 for 12 passing for 186 yards, a trio of touchdowns and one interception. He also ran the ball 9 times for 82 yards. Mike Boone was his top target. Boone made 5 catches for 144 yards. Drew Rogers caught a 36-yard pass for a touchdown.
On the ground, Falon Lee continued to impress, running the ball 10 times for 100 yards and a touchdown.Defensively, the Cats are still a work in progress as they have a lot of holes to fill from graduation. Sulkowski cited the leadership of Rashodd Hadley at middle linebacker and with CeCe Jefferson, Jon Kinney and Blake Mills up front.
“I felt we played very well at times. As we expected with a spring game we had way too many mistakes on both sides of the ball,” said Sulkowski. “I believe we answered a lot of questions about who can help us in the fall, but also which guys need to improve tremendously in order to be in the starting rotation when fall camp comes around.”
For a spring game, that is about all you can ask.
Oh, and a win is nice.