Wildcats roar at jamboree

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 26, 2002

"Hear us roar," is what the Florala Wildcats announced Friday night when they participated in a preseason high school jamboree.

The Wildcats teamed up with Barbour County to dimiss the duo of Houston County and Kinston by a final score of 24-14.

The jamboree was set up where each team would play two quarters on offense and two quarters on defense.

The Wildcats began the jamboree on defense against the Houston County offense and gave up six points on a touchdown.

Florala's offense, however, did more than make up for the lone touchdown the stop unit gave up.

Quarterback Tyler Hughes and fullback Clif Lassiter both scored on short runs for 12 points.

Barbour County added to the point total for a 24-14 win with one offensive touchdown and one defensive touchdown via a fumble recovery.

Florala's first-year Head Coach Doug Vickery was pleased with the effort his players gave in the jamboree.

"The whole point was to go into this game and gain confidence for our kids," Vickery said. "They were estastic because they were able to compete."

One of the stars on the gridiron for the Wildcats was freshman Vance Gettis.

Vickery describe one play in which Gettis ran down an opposing player from behind for a touchdown-stopping tackle.

The Wildcat defense followed the freshman's lead with a line stand to deny the Kinston offense.

However, the Florala defenders barely got off the field before the players had to snap their helmets back up and go to work.

A fumble by the Barbour County offense had given the ball back to Kinston inside the "red zone."

The Wildcats roared to the ocassion once again turning back Kinston from within their own 20-yard line.

After the game, the Florala players were excited and Vickery said he was excited for them.

"I was just really happy for them," Vickery said. "They were excited about winning at a jamboree, but they should be because they played well."

Vickery said the offense ran smoothly under the direction of senior quarterback Tyler Hughes.

"I felt like our offense was good," Vickery said. "He's got good wheels and he made some good passes."

The Wildcats made a few mental mistakes and had a few miscues, but overall Vickery said the players did outstanding.

"For the most part, I think we were mistake free," he said. "Even though we had a few mistakes, we still won."

On defense, Vickery said Mark Geohagan was the leading tackler thanks in part to the work of the defensive linemen and their ability to disrupt plays.

"Vance Gettis, a ninth-grader, played really well for us," Vickery said. "Also, I thought Victor Hobdy played well for us at cornerback.

"Clif Lassiter (defensive tackle) was in their backfield a lot," Vickery added. "He was just doing a good job."

Overall, Vickery said the win should help the players as they continue to prepare for Friday night's season-opener against the Red Level Tigers.

"We may lose some games this year, but we are going into every game with the belief that we have a chance to win," Vickery said.

They showed how strong their faith in themselves is last Friday night and they hope to play well enough to be in a position to win this Friday night.

The game between Red Level and Florala will be played at the Florala High School Stadium with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m.