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Spring football bringing confidence, growth for Wildcats

The Richmond Hill Wildcats football team will return the majority of their starters from the 2023 season, but they have not necessarily been the primary focus thus far in spring. 

“We know who we return from last year, but we want to see some of the younger guys to get some reps,” head football coach Matt LeZotte said. “We are sort of using the veteran players to grow the young guys. Mixing some pieces together to see what we put together.”

Although a few thunderstorms inhibited the Wildcats from getting practices in, things have been trending positively throughout spring. 

“We have had some really good days of practice,” LeZotte said. “We have been able to be creative. We have pushed them to do things differently, and as a result, we look different. 

“We have done a lot in the offseason as far as training and speed work and things, and that has allowed us to look different in pads. We look good. We are applying what we have been building in the offseason.”

While the goal in any game is to compete and come away with the win, the spring game is a way to see where you stand against competition. 

“It’s always great to get in pads and see yourself against someone else, especially in the ones that don’t count,” Lezotte said. “We know who we bring back. We just want to see the younger guys do against varsity competition.”

With those returning players, several have made an impact in spring, and have improved since the season came to the end. 

“Our quarterback Kirk Scott has had a great offseason,” LeZotte said. “Caleb Easterling is doing it all for us. Gabe Bauman has been great. Lee Johnson jumped straight into football as his baseball season ended and he is making plays. We have a great group that show up every day and compete. They are extremely competitive.”

Several of the young players and the lesser known athletes have stepped up in the spring to make a name for themselves as well. 

“Our tailback room has gotten better,” LeZotte said. “In addition to us returning Joshua Troupe, Amire Miller has stood out this spring. Both of those guys have run over 20mph this offseason. Both have shown really good ball skills.

“Derrick Lum played wideout last year and is playing some [at] tight end now. He has some great size. DJ Porter has had a phenomenal spring. Nick Cameron has had a great spring. Both of those guys have played on both sides of the ball. It’s been great to see them use their talents on both sides of the ball.”

Richmond Hill will host Effingham for their spring game on May 15. Kickoff is set for 6:30pm.

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