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NHS caps off spring by hosting two teams for scrimmage

Natchez High School football player Lee Jackson, left, runs with the ball after making an interception during team drills before a scrimmage against McComb High School on Friday evening. (Jay Sowers \ The Natchez Democrat)
Natchez High School football player Lee Jackson, left, runs with the ball after making an interception during team drills before a scrimmage against McComb High School on Friday evening. (Jay Sowers \ The Natchez Democrat)

NATCHEZ — Natchez High School hosted Port Gibson and McComb high schools as the three traded hits in a set of spring scrimmages Friday evening.

Each school faced one another in the scoreless scrimmages, and each team got the same amount of reps on each side of the ball.

“The idea was to guarantee both sides of the ball got the same amount of plays so we could get work in,” NHS head coach Lance Reed said.

NHS and McComb went at it first, followed by McComb and Port Gibson and, finally, NHS and Port Gibson. Reed said before his team’s round with McComb that he was happy to see his players get some offensive and defensive sets against a different opponent.

“We felt like McComb is a really good competitor for us, and they gave us all we wanted,” Reed said. “It was exactly what we needed — seeing a different colored jersey, seeing some intensity and seeing where we were. We saw some bright things and some things we needed to work on.”

Offensively, Reed said his team showed some promise but still had a ways to go.

“We did make a few plays in different parts of the field, but there were times that we sputtered a little bit,” Reed said. “Given where we are at this stage of the spring, we felt like we saw some things that were successful.”

On the defensive side, Reed said he was somewhat surprised at his team’s tackling execution.

“We have some guys at different spots, and they have a lot to learn,” Reed said. “We’re just focusing on being sound and some of the basics, like tackling and forcing turnovers.

“We’re still trying to get an understanding of what we want on that side of the ball, but I feel like we tackled better than expected. We’ve been struggling with that, so I was pleased.”

Reed said a number of younger players got in on the action, which was very important as his team builds for not just next year, but the next few years.

“These young guys getting a chance to compete is huge for them,” Reed said. “They’re the future of our program, so giving them the opportunity is really important.”

Next up are summer workouts for the Bulldogs, which begin June 10.