7-on-7 improves, falls short of qualification
WOLFFORTH — Frenship’s 7-on-7 team showed marked improvement in last weekend’s state qualifier, but the end result was the same: elimination in group stage.
If not for a last-second catch and dive by the Tigers’ final opponent in pool play, though, Frenship could very well have already qualified for the state tournament from July 19-21 in College Station.
Instead, the Tigers will head to the Permian Basin 7-on-7 State Qualifying Tournament in Odessa this weekend for a last hurrah to qualify.
“I saw a lot of things I liked,” said Frenship football coach Brad Davis. “I thought the kids played well. I thought since we’ve been able to work out a little bit it really showed. They were really on the same page. I thought they played extremely well except for a few plays in the Chapin game.”
Frenship finished winless a week prior in Abilene.
The Tigers, playing in a three-team group with Estacado and El Paso Chapin, had little trouble in an opening exhibition against El Paso El Dorado, getting a 31-22 victory behind the strength of a strong defensive secondary.
Frenship squeaked by Estacado, 21-14, getting some help from the Matador receivers who dropped several passes in the end zone. Chapin also beat Estacado, 27-12, which set up a defacto group championship game.
A back-and-forth game came down to the wire, with Frenship up 39-33 with less than two minutes remaining.
Chapin, which had scored on its previous three possessions, set up a play as time ran out to get the ball to a receiver just inside the 5-yard line, as the receiver dove into the end zone.
The Huskies converted the extra-point attempt, eliminating the Tigers after a rousing game.
Several times during the game, Chapin burned Tiger defenders on a wheel route out of a stacked bunch formation.
Defensive back Dalexae Johnson, who returned an interception for a touchdown earlier against the Huskies, recognized some of the strengths of Saturday despite the last-second loss.
“We’re facing a lot more better athletes out here than we are in the fall. It helps just getting those different looks and seeing different things,” he said.
Johnson, who will be a junior in the fall, emerged as one of the stars of Saturday’s tournament on the defensive end, but Davis said judging players based on 7-on-7 performances is difficult.
“He’s a good athlete and he’s a fast kid that does very well defensively at the corner. So we’ll see,” Davis said. “It’s hard to tell. You can’t judge 7-on-7 and real football. Once two-a-days start, we’ll see.”
Quarterback Trevor Lloyd, the anticipated starter for the Tigers in the fall, also had a banner day for the Tigers, taking every snap.
He had a particularly good day connecting with wide receiver Cade Davis, the only returner from last year’s 7-on-7 state qualifier.
Lloyd and Davis hooked up for six touchdowns on the day, mostly on jump balls in the corner of the end zone, as the soon-to-be senior emerged as Lloyd’s favorite target.
However, Davis doesn’t want Lloyd to only focus on the high-jumping Davis.
“7-on-7 is so much different than 11-man football; you’ve got to have that same rapport with all of your receivers because we’re going to spread the ball around,” Davis said.
The Tigers have one more shot to qualify for the state tournament when they head to Odessa on Saturday.
If last weekend’s results are any indication, the Tigers should be among the favorites to qualify.
“(The Frenship tournament) was a lot better than what it was in Abilene,” Lloyd said, “but we still have several adjustments we need to make to pull it away in Odessa.”
Permian Basin 7-on-7 State Qualifying Tournament
What: Top two teams qualify for state tournamen
When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday
Where: Ratliff Stadium, Odessa
Pool A: Permian, San Angelo Central, Abilene Cooper, Monterey
Pool B: Odessa High, Frenship, San Angelo Lakeview, Permian 2
9 a.m.: Permian vs. Monterey, Odessa High vs. San Angelo Lakeview, San Angelo Central vs. Abilene Cooper, Frenship vs. Permian 2
10 a.m.: Permian vs. Abilene Cooper, Odessa High vs. Frenship, San Angelo Central vs. Monterey, San Angelo Lakeview vs. Permian 2
11 a.m.: Permian vs. San Angelo Central, Odessa High vs. Permian 2, Monterey vs. Abilene Cooper, Frenship vs. San Angelo Lakeview
2 p.m.: Pool A winner vs. Pool B runner-up, Pool B winner vs. Pool A runner-up
3 p.m.: Championship
You must be logged in to post a comment.