NU tests it all in scrimmage |

NU tests it all in scrimmage

Eileen JoyceNevada Union's Jon Sheets drops back to pass the ball during the Miners' intra-squad scrimmage Thursday.
ALL | GrassValleyArchive

Nevada Union’s football team held its intra-squad scrimmage Thursday, taking advantage of the extra week before preseason begins to size up where the team is at.

NU coach Dave Humphers said afterward that it appears this year’s team may be a bit ahead of where the 2001 squad was at this time, suggesting a possibility of good things to come.

Humphers was pleased with the performance of quarterbacks Jon Sheets and Jared Van Matre Thursday, as well as a defensive front that made three or four would-be sacks.

But, as with the purpose of the scrimmage, for every good play on one side of the ball, there were perhaps things on the other side of the ball that will need further review.

“We’ll have to study the film and look at a lot of issues, like the running game,” Humphers said. “Defensively, at times, it looked liked we did good things, and at times it looked like there are some things we’ll have to correct.”

Among the highlights of the 90-minute workout were two would-be touchdown grabs by tight end Phil Cosenza – one thrown by Sheets, the other by Van Matre – and an interception by safety Matt Sharpe on a sideline pass.

“Sharpe made a great interception,” Humphers said. “It looked like the receiver was open, and he just really closed on the receiver and broke in front.”

Senior tailback Chris Thibodeau, who rushed for 250 yards in a reserve role last year, saw plenty of action Thursday. He returned the opening kick-off for a sizable gain, and carried the ball a number of times for the Miner offense out of the wing-T.

“I feel a lot better conditioned this year, and can go a lot harder, a lot faster” Thibodeau said. “Our defensive and offensive lines are awesome, so when you get them together, it is a lot of fun. We are going to be an awesome team.”

Senior wide receiver Joe Dolan said he also senses great things about the season to come for the 2002 Miners.

“I think there is more motivation this year,” Dolan said. “We really want (a section title). There’s energy this year, and we’re not too happy with the 48th ranking in CalHiSports. We’d like to fix that.”

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