Cardinals learn in scrimmage ahead of regular season
By Jacob Heid
STEVENS POINT – It’s the time of year again when high school football dominates Friday night.
For Pacelli, the scrimmage they hosted vs. Necedah on Aug. 10 at Goerke Field was a good stepping stone as the Cardinals move into week one of the season.
Head Coach Drew Nelson thought the team showed clear improvement on both sides of the ball over the first week and a half of practice.
The first-team offense for Pacelli took the field first and impressed.
The Cardinals found the end zone three times on as many drives, all from the 40-yard line.
All three drives showcased the run and the passing game by getting into the end zone with both.
Nelson commented how he liked his team reacting to a different defensive look than they’ve seen.
“I liked the step we took tonight. [Necedah] had some bigger guys and ran a defense that we haven’t practiced against,” Nelson said. “It was nice to see how our kids reacted and how they changed the blocking schemes and kind of did it on the fly. I thought they did pretty well up front and obviously, our backs hit the holes. We scored on a long pass as well.”
As much as running the ball is Pacelli’s bread and butter, a balance between the two would be nice for different situations.
“If we can have a passing attack, too, I think that obviously will open up the run game a little bit more,” Nelson explained.
The defense looked just as good, tallying multiple turnovers during the roughly hour-long scrimmage.
Both first and second-team defenses for Pacelli created turnovers.
Nelson mentioned that his defense needs a gang-tackle mentality as they enter the regular season.
“Everybody needs to rally to that ball every single play. We’ve got to get there as a team and put hats on the ball,” Nelson stated. “Good things happen when we do that.”
Pacelli will take what they learned into practice before its game vs. Catholic Central on Saturday, Aug. 19, at 1 p.m. at Goerke Field.