Natchez High hosts 7-on-7 scrimmages for area teams

Published 1:09 am Friday, June 9, 2017

Natchez High School’s Shavoké Herrington spun away from a Tylertown defender and sauntered into the end zone.  On the opposite end of the field, Trinity Episcopal’s Dee Fleming leapt high into the air to pull in a touchdown strike against Wilkinson County.

Summer football was in full swing at Tom E. Williams Stadium Thursday.

Six teams descended on the Natchez High campus, putting their skills to the test for a 7-on-7 practice session. Cathedral and Ferriday also joined the event, with each school rotating in for action.

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“We have a great group of coaches here,” Natchez High coach Roy Rigsby said. “We all got together and wanted to make sure these guys got the opportunity to compete at a high level, but also condition at the same time.”

Thursday’s games were the first of a series of combined practices among the participants that is expected to last for the next few weeks. The teams will face off every Tuesday with each school taking turns as host on a rotating basis.

“We want to compete,” Cathedral coach Chuck Darbonne said. “We’re putting our guys in a bunch of different spots and letting them compete and see how they do against some of the highly-skilled players that are out here.”

Rigsby said a key to the summer sessions is seeing how his squad stacks up against some of the area’s top teams.

“It’s always good to go against somebody else and give you some type of barometer,” he said. “My main thing is I want to see my guys give fight, and as long as we do that, I think we’re going to be pretty good this season.”

Darbonne added the competition level will allow for improvement on both sides of the ball for his squad.

“Offensively it helps us out with all the timing — the quarterbacks being able to see windows and throwing the ball on time,” he said. “Defensively it helps in learning the passing route tree and reading the quarterbacks. We’re practicing a lot of things that we’re doing against ourselves, but putting it in a competitive atmosphere.”