Trying to soar into a new era of Velma-Alma Football, the Comets are getting ready to start the 2019 season at home against the Ryan Cowboys this evening at Velma-Alma High School.
With the Comets moving from 11-man to 8-man in 2019, second year coach Randy Norton said they had a scrimmage last week and he feels his team is ready to compete for a bigger goal.
“I was happy with the scrimmage. I felt their effort was great and it was awesome, while we are older this year instead of a lot of sophomores playing we are juniors,” Norton said. “We have time under our belts here and I thought we executed well, the receivers caught the ball well, the quarterback threw the ball well and the lineman blocked well.”
Defensively, Norton said that his team flew to the football and he said this week they are focusing on the times where they didn’t line up correctly but is overall pleased with the way his team looked.
“I think we got that first series in the scrimmage under our belt and we kind of loosened up, instead of so much thinking we just started to play,” Norton said. “We looked really good. Ryan has a real good quarterback, they have some size on the line and Coach Tomberlin is a real good coach. They have been there a long time and have been a powerhouse in 8-man football for years. We know we are going to have our hands full but we are ready for the challenge.”
With it being the first game that the Comets will play under the 8-man rules, Norton said the team is excited about the prospect of winning and competing at a high level.
“They feel like they have a chance to compete this year. 8-man is a different game and it is a faster game. We are having to adjust our mindset that defense is really tough and we are not going to shut everybody out,” Norton said. “We have had to talk to our kids and tell them sometimes that big plays happen, we just have to regroup and get ready for the next play.”
Comets will be led by sophomore quarterback Tristan Wainscott and Norton said that along with him throwing the football he will rely on other players like Austin Hunt, Dylan Hurst, Cooper Keck, Gage Swisher and Garrett Emerick who will be able to keep players fresh on the offensive front.
The line will feature Coty Loftin, Riley Harper, Cade Kilcrease and Trenton Wright while on defense they will rely being two deep and four deep using the players they have on their roster.
With the game starting at 7:30 p.m. today at Velma-Alma, Norton said he is excited about playing in front of the home crowd and for the Comets, he knows the success will come every Friday night.
“I’m just excited for a new chapter in Velma Football. It was a little bit sad last year knowing that I had a hand in making the change from 11 to 8-man,” Norton said. “The next morning I woke up and I realized it was a new opportunity for us to go out and compete against schools our size. I think there will be a lot of excitement. I think a lot of people will be at the game and a lot of teams around here don’t play week zero so I think we will have a lot of people from out of town coming to watch the ball game. I think our hometown will show up excited to see something new, see what it is all about, and a lot of people right here havn’t seen an 8-man game and the anticipation of what it is going to look like.”