DUBLIN — By the time the Knights take the field at The Castle on Friday for the final scrimmage of the preseason, new head coach Russell Dove is hoping to see a West Bladen team already well prepared for its season opener at home against the Mustangs of South Robeson High.
“By Friday, I’m hoping we can make the necessary adjustments with our assignments, as well look pretty crisp with our blocking and execution,” Dove said.
The Knights got a good look at what more than two weeks of official practice has resulted in when they traveled to Tabor City on Saturday for a four-team scrimmage against Wilmington Laney, Red Springs and host South Columbus.
“Everything seems to be going pretty well so far,” Dove said. “But when you are shifting from a pass-oriented office to a run-based offense, like we are, then there’s a lot more physicality to get used to.”
West Bladen did get some bad news when it lost senior lineman Tristan Britt to a shoulder injury during practice.
“I feel badly for him … he worked so hard to get back on the field after having his shoulder surgically repaired last year,” Dove said. “I’m not sure if he has a chance to return this season. Right now he’s out indefinitely.”
As the regular season looms, Dove said he is happy with the progress his varsity has made since practices opened on Aug. 1.
“I think we’re doing well,” he said. “But there’s also no doubt that we have a lot more to do — it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
“And until we get up against some of these teams in the jamboree, we really won’t know how we’ll react to what we’ll see,” he added.