The Wildcat football team has been hard at practice in anticipation of their first season game. Some might even say too hard – because the team is plagued with injuries as they prepare to kick off their season with a game against Bryan County Aug. 29.
Days after being chosen as the team’s quarterback, senior Tyler Mitchell broke his hand during practice when he "took a bad snap," according to head coach Brian Brocato.
Linebacker Lance Owens is also sidelined due to injury he sustained during recent practice. Brocato said a doctor will evaluate his shoulder on Monday.
On the defensive side, number one free safety DJ Stembridge fractured his wrist during practice on Aug. 12. Meanwhile, broken fingers and a broken wrist have sidelined a couple JV players.
Brocato said he is still "cautiously optimistic" about the season and is predicting some wins this year.
Sophomore Eli Thompson filled in the quarterback role during the Aug. 15 scrimmage versus Groves, and will most likely do the same for the Bryan County game. Thompson saw some success last year as the RHHS junior varsity quarterback.
Mitchell is anticipated to return later in season. Whether he reclaims the QB spot or not depends on his health. In the mean time, Brocato said Thompson "is young but has a good grasp at offense. He’s going to be a great quarterback down the road."
Brocato said he has other alternates in mind for the QB spot as well, including junior Matt Williams.
Look for results from Friday’s scrimmage against Groves in Wednesday’s paper.
Bryan County High School will have their tune-up match on Aug. 22 versus Metter.