With Tolar’s players donning different jersey numbers than will be worn during the regular season, it was often difficult to distinguish the players on the field during Thursday night’s football scrimmage against Dublin at Rattler Stadium.
Determining the superior team was not.
The scrimmage consisted of a junior varsity-varsity controlled simulation, a single live quarter for the JV and a full half for the varsity.
The Class 2A Rattlers varsity outscored the Lions 2-0 in the controlled scrimmage, and 26-6 in the timed half. Tolar’s touchdowns came on runs of 44, 5 and 4 yards, and a 1-yard pass thrown by starting quarterback Dakota Endsley.
Tolar was the unquestionable winner in all formats, throttling their Class 3A foe in the Rattlers’ final tune-up before opening the season at home against Crawford this Friday. The opener is set for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff at Tolar’s Rattler Stadium.
“I think it was a huge boost for our kids,” Tolar head coach Mike Franklin said. “We played hard, and we executed.”
After all four teams struggled to find a consistent rhythm during the controlled portion of the scrimmage, the Rattlers quickly found it during the live portion.
Tolar’s varsity started the first 12-minute quarter by sacking the Dublin quarterback, a trend that would continue throughout the contest.
Overall in the timed half, the Rattlers forced eight punts and limited Dublin to 172 yards, five first downs and one touchdown.
The defense was focused and fast, and rarely was there a tackle made by only one player. The Rattlers had swarm tackling down to a science.
On the offensive side, Tolar found the mojo it had been searching for.
Tolar racked up 367 yards of offense and four touchdowns in the two quarters.
The Rattlers offense had 16 plays of 10 yards or more, and six of those went for more than 20 yards.
Tolar had six receivers haul in passes for a total of 146 yards and a score. Seven different ball carriers rushed for 221 yards and three touchdowns.
Barring an injury, the offensive line and quarterback are the only offensive pieces Franklin sees as being set in stone.
“When it comes to receivers and running backs, we’re going to keep fresh bodies in there,” Franklin said. “Our offense is going to be fast, much faster than it has been before, and we’re going to need to be fresh.”