GALT — Let the countdown toward the start of the high school football season.
On Wednesday, the Lodi High and Liberty Ranch High football teams met at Hawk Stadium for a 7-on-7 passing game. That pitted each team’s offenses of quarterbacks, running backs, tight ends and wide receivers against defenses that feature linebackers — inside and outside — plus defensive backs, free and strong safeties.
“We had a lot of guys were missing today,” said Lodi coach George Duenas. “So it was nice to see some of our younger guys that haven’t seen much (action) during the summer, playing time.”
Liberty Ranch coach Anthony Linebaugh added, “All we wanted to do is improve on our ability to get into formations quickly and correctly. And to execute our responsibilities; even if they weren’t perfect to where the kids knew what to do as opposed to them having to ask questions. That was an improvement today.”
Lodi had the football first at midfield. Like any football team that has the ball first, Lodi and Liberty Ranch had to move the ball at least 10 yards to earn a first down. Lodi and Liberty Ranch each had 15 tries on offense. Both squads scored on most of their drives.
Duenas had quarterbacks Logan Stout, a senior who returns for his third season, and Adam Schallberger, a sophomore who started on the Lodi junior varsity team last fall, take snaps Wednesday. Stout also played wide receiver, catching nearly a half-dozen passes that included two for touchdowns.
“They are both very strong competitors for quarterback,” said Duenas of Stout and Schallberger.
Linebaugh also had two quarterbacks splitting time in taking snaps. Aidan Carr and Isaiah Ricci rotated in taking snaps. Carr started on the Hawks’ JV team last fall. Ricci didn’t play last season but played on the 2017 Liberty Ranch JV team.
“Both have improved tremendously,” said Linebaugh of Carr and Ricci. “I’m looking forward to them to be key contributors to our team this year.”
Wednesday’s workout was the last one of the summer for both teams. Duenas and Linebaugh plan to give their players time off as the Fourth of July, which is next Thursday.
According to the Sac-Joaquin Section’s website — cifsjs.org — the dead period for high school football begins on Monday, July 8. High school football teams can still conduct weight training and conditioning during the dead period.
The first day of practice is Monday, July 29.
Lodi will kickoff its season on Friday, Aug. 30 when it host Ceres in a non-league game at the Grape Bowl. Liberty Ranch welcomes Johnson of Sacramento, also a non-league game, at Hawk Stadium on Friday, Aug. 23.
Contact Mike Bush at email@example.com. Follow on Twitter: @MBushLodiSports.