CLARKSBURG – With the official start of the high school football season just a week away, Buckhannon-Upshur head coach Duane Stoeckle and his Buccaneers ventured to Clarksburg for their final scrimmage of the year when they took on the Robert C. Byrd Eagles Wednesday evening.
The scrimmage comes off of the heels of the football grid-o-rama at North Marion last Saturday where the Bucs scrimmaged Liberty and North Marion.
“I think one of things the coaching staff was looking for against Robert C. Byrd was, would we show any improvement from last Saturday and could we correct some of our mistakes and get better?,” remarked Stoeckle. “I think Robert C. Byrd will be in the Class AA play-off hunt again. I believe it was a good scrimmage for both teams, and as a result, I think both teams were able to improve themselves.”
Stoeckle stated he did see improvement from his team, especially on the defensive side of the ball.
“Defensively, I felt we improved with each series,” stated Stoeckle. “Several guys made key plays. I also felt our tackling improved from our last scrimmage.”
The veteran coach also saw improvement on the offensive side of the ball as well
“Offensively, we executed fairly well,” commented Stoeckle. “A lot of players got touches on offense either catching the football or running with it. To this point our skill guys have been very unselfish. They don't care who has the ball as long as the team is doing well. That is a good sign.”
Stoeckle highlighted several players offensively that had a good scrimmage.
“Tyler Kuhn had his first catch of the season and had an excellent block on a Brayden Cutlip catch and run,” noted Stoeckle. “Senior quarterback Ryan Strader completed passes to five different receivers and Zach Barcus had a couple nice runs and a reception with his first varsity action.”
The Bucs will open their season at home next Friday against Fairmont Senior at 7 p.m.
“We have definitely shown improvement with each practice so far this season,” concluded Stoeckle. “I would hope we continue to see improvement as we move forward. We have worked hard on the little things or details. Things like our players knowing their alignment, assignments, and proper techniques. We feel, as a coaching staff, that if our players focus on the things they can control, that we will be able to achieve our goals for this season. I know our coaching staff and players are excited for the season to begin.