Wildcats erratic in football jamboree
"We've got a lot of work to do," Cassville's David Large told his circle of players at the end of their jamboree at Springfield on Friday night. "We're not a very good football team right now."
Large pointed out several areas where the Wildcats struggled during controlled scrimmage against squads from Neosho, Springfield Parkview, and Willard at JFK Stadium. Penalties, missed blocks, tentative running and dropped passes were on Large's list.
Still, there were some positives for Cassville on Friday night.
The defense did not allow a score in the format where the offense starts at the opponents' 40-yard line. Neosho and Willard did not threaten the red zone against the Wildcats. Parkview, with a number of impressive skill players, gained a first down at the Cassville 11-yard line but never crossed the 10 on four consecutive snaps.
Cassville's linebacking crew, led by senior Stanton Stringer, recorded several stops and losses and received credit for three sacks and a pair of interceptions.
Offensively, Cassville crossed the goal line twice with senior tailback Kreg Myers scoring against Parkview and Willard.
With the Wildcats in a first-and-goal situation at the Parkview two-yard line, Myers lowered his head and bulled into the endzone on a straight handoff out of the split backs set. Against Willard, Myers broke loose on a third-and-three draw play and raced 33 yards untouched into the endzone.
The Wildcats wasted a scoring opportunity against Neosho when senior Kyle Brattin was stopped just short of the goal line on a fouth-and-goal carry from the two-yard line.
Ricky Nichols, a senior and the returning quarterback from last year, had a good outing. Nichols ran for 103 yards on six carries and was two for four in passing with one interception.
The Wildcats open regular season play this Friday, Aug. 26 when they host the tradition-rich Mountain Grove Panthers at 7 p.m. at Wildcat Stadium.