WSN’s Hoehn recaps ‘demanding’ spring training for Eagles
The 2012 spring training period for the W.S. Neal Eagle football team was more demanding than 2011, but the rewards were extra nice this year. That is how head coach Doug Hoehn described the 10-day period that ended Saturday with a jamboree against Linden and Atmore.
The Eagles had 60 players on the jamboree roster this year.
“We had some out due to injury that were not on the roster,” Hoehn said. “We had five that missed spring due to injuries. I think 60 is a pretty good number and that our numbers from last year were about the same.”
As far as the jamboree Saturday, Hoehn said the kids worked hard.
“We made more mistakes in the first game against Linden than we did in the second game against Atmore,” he said. “Those were not as numerous or as costly as the mistakes we made last year. That is a big improvement in that area, but we still want to continue to improve in that area. We were more physical than we were last year. We are still not as physical as where I would like for us to be.”
During the 10-day practice period, Hoehn said he and the team we were able to accomplish more each practice than last year.
“Last year was a very slow process for us,” he said. “We were trying to learn formations and terminology and them learning our expectations and the fundamentals that we wanted to teach. The attitude and effort was different but they were more accustomed to that this year. It was twice rewarding this year for us. We were able to accomplish twice as much each practice as we were last year.”
While the rewards were twice in 2012, there were several players that really came on this year from last year Hoehn said. TyAnthony Alexander, Zack Williams and Josiah Nettles were just a few names mentioned by Hoehn who said all players improved in 2012.
“TyAnthony came on and won one of the starting safety jobs as a ninth grader,” Hoehn said. “He has really improved a lot. Zack Williams, another ninth grader that plays offensive line for us, has improved tremendously. All the kids improved over last year and some have stepped up. Josiah Nettles has improved a lot since last year and I thought he ran the ball really hard Saturday. So, we didn’t have anyone take any steps back from last year. Whether they were a starter last year or not, all the kids improved.”
After coming in mid-December of 2010 and doing spring practice last May, Hoehn said the basics had to be laid down first before having a more demanding spring practice this year.
“Spring practice this year for us was more difficult than last year,” Hoehn said. “It was more demanding physically and mentally. Last year we really had to slow it down and go over it again time and time again. We had to teach them the plays and fundamentals where this year they already knew them. Our winter workouts were more demanding. It is just something you should do in your second spring, you just have to lay the basics down first in that first spring. We were a lot more demanding of the kids this year and we didn’t have to take the time teaching them simple reads and simple things they should know when we got here.”
The Eagles will start summer workouts Tuesday, May 29 after taking off Monday for the Memorial Day holiday.