Panthers set to host pre-season scrimmage

Published 3:33 pm Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Area football fans will get their first taste of high school action Wednesday, August 10 as Northside hosts a 10-team scrimmage from 6-8:30 p.m.

Southside, Washington High School, Bertie County, Gates County, Croatan, Farmville Central, S. Lenoir, Dixon and Washington County will join the Panthers at Bing Mitchell Stadium.

Each team will face four opponents for 10 offensive and 10 defensive plays. The offense starts at the 40-yard line and keeps the ball regardless of how many times they score until the 10 plays are up. The opponents switch from offense to defense for another 10 plays, so both units get equal time on the field.

Games continue on both sides of the field, so four teams are competing at the time.

“It’s a great way for folks to see a bunch of teams in the same place after waiting all summer for football season to get here,” Northside coach Keith Boyd said. “The players like it because they get a chance to hit somebody wearing a different colored uniform and it breaks the monotony of a long summer of workouts. The coaches like it because we use the tape as a teaching tool to make corrections and to evaluate personnel going into our first game on the 19th.”

Boyd’s Panthers finished 11-2 with a Coastal Plains Conference title and a trip to the fourth round of the 1A playoffs last fall. Like all teams, there are holes to fill on both sides of the ball.

“The more reps against live competition the better,” Boyd said of the scrimmage’s importance. “It helps them settle in a little bit before the season starts for real and gives the coaches a chance to set some things before the first game.”

Southside (11-2) and Washington (10-3) are also coming off strong seasons last year and have young players in key roles. All three county teams are scheduled to face each other in the scrimmage.

Admission is $5 and the concession stand will be open.