Chants take a test drive in first scrimmage of season

The Coastal Carolina football team held its 12th practice and its first scrimmage of the 2017 preseason Thursday morning at Brooks Stadium.

After some individual drills and a five-minute session working on kickoff coverage, the remainder of the two-hour workout was a straight scrimmage with the offense starting on its own 30 yard line and keeping the ball until it scored or was stopped.

“I saw a lot of competition and great effort by our guys,” interim head coach Jamey Chadwell said. “There were some mistakes on both sides of the ball. I thought our defense did a nice job creating turnovers. However, the offense did a nice job putting (the turnovers) behind them and sustain some drives.”

“I do think we can be a good team, but we have to make sure we are working together,” Chadwell added. “The expectation here is to win and win every week. Those expectations are not going to change. We just have to understand what it is going to take to do that as we are moving up to this next level.”

The following are highlights from each of the drives:

* Drive 1 (1st offense vs 1st defense): Josh Stilley converted the first third-down situation of the day with a completion to Chris Jones. Osharmar Abercrombie had a tough 10-yard run for a first down. From the defense’s 37, the defense held the offense on both third and fourth downs to end the drive.

* Drive 2 (2nd offense vs 2nd defense): Ra’Quan Bennett opened the drive with an eight-yard run and Chance Thrasher converted a first down after scrambling on a busted play. Alex James converted back-to-back first downs, first on an eight-yard reception followed by a 13-yard run. Then, on third-and-17, Preston Carey pulled down an interception to end the drive.

* Drive 3 (1st offense vs 1st defense): Dalton Demos connected with Chris Jones for a 28-yard gain on the first play of the drive. Demos likely would have been sacked by Marcus Williamson had the quarterbacks been live to tackle, but demos was credited for a 15-yard gain on a scramble for a first down. On third-and-three from the 27, Abercrombie burst up the middle and broke several tackles to score the first touchdown of the scrimmage.

* Drive 4 (2nd offense vs 2nd defense): T’Qele Holmes had a 12-yard run, caught a 10-yard pass from Austin Wilson and had a 16-yard run. Jacqez Hairston had a nine-yard run on second.Bennett, like Abercrombie the previous drive, hit the middle of the line and found paydirt from 16 yards out for a touchdown.

* Drive 5 (3rd offense vs 3rd defense): After two negative plays to start the drive and facing third-and-long, Austin Bradley found Jay King II for a 20-yard gain and a first down. Holmes continued his strong play with a 12-yard reception and later had a nice diving catch in the back of the end zone for a 28-yard touchdown.

* Drive 6 (3rd offense vs 3rd defense): Anthony McAfee had runs of 12 and nine yards to start the drive. However, after a Tyler Keane completion, Braden Matts forced a fumble that Quane’ Washington recovered to end the first half of the scrimmage.

* Drive 7 (1st offense vs 1st defense): The defense began to assert itself once the second half of the scrimmage began, forcing a three-and-out on the first drive thanks to a nice tackle by Dontay Hears on a second down.Marcus Outlow had a good run and Jones caught an 18-yard pass from Demos. However, Chandler Kryst made a hit to break-up a pass, which nearly led to an interception by Anthony Chesley.

* Drive 8 (2nd offense vs 2nd defense): Eric Church had a pass break-up to force a three-and-out. The units stayed on the field and Wilson found Antawn Chandler for a first down. C.J. Brewer ended the drive with a sack on a fourth-and-three.

* Drive 9 (1st offense vs 1st defense): For a third straight drive, the defense forced a three-and-out. However, Thrasher answered with a 42-yard completion to Jones to the 22 yard line. Thrasher then connected with Laquay Brown for a 20-yard gain and Bennett plunged into the end zone with a one-yard touchdown run.

* Drive 10 (3rd offense vs 3rd defense): The drive started slow, but Baden Pinson had a 12-yard run for a first down. McAfee followed with an 11-yard run. Later, on third-and-four, Darius Harper found Tre’ High for a first down. The defense stiffened as Cantorian Weems had a pass break-up and Ronald Arbertha had a sack. The drive ended with a missed field goal.

* Drive 11 (2nd offense vs 2nd defense): On the final drive of the scrimmage, Hairston broke off a 15-yard gain and Marquiese Jones had a 19-yard rush. The scrimmage came to an end when Kilton Anderson’s long pass was picked off by Kryst.

In addition to some of the names mentioned above, Jave Brown had two pass break-ups; Jeffrey Gunter had a sack; and Jalin Walker, Aykelle Cross and Chesley each recorded a tackles for loss.

Photo courtesy of CCU Athletics

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