Scrimmage tests Summit football team prior to the start of the season |

Scrimmage tests Summit football team prior to the start of the season

Jack Schierholz watches his team scrimmage against the Grand Junction Central Warriors on Saturday, Aug. 20. Schierholz participated in one and half possessions before watching the rest of the scrimmage from the sidelines. Schierholz connected for one touchdown pass in the Tigers 21-14 victory over the Warriors.
Cody Jones/Summit Daily News

Editor’s note: An earlier version of the article indicated that the Summit High School football team is in the 4A classification. The Summit High School football team is in the 3A classification.

It’s not quite football season in Summit County but on Saturday, Aug. 20 it got a whole lot closer with the Summit High School football team hosting the Grand Junction Central High School Warriors for an early-season scrimmage.

Much like every team in the National Football League, high school teams need the opportunity to play in a low-pressure, preseason scrimmage prior to the official start of the season.

Saturday morning’s scrimmage provided that low-stakes atmosphere for both teams with the Tigers sending its first team onto the field to begin the two-quarter game. 

Lining up behind center for the first time this season was senior starting quarterback Jack Schierholz. Schierholz had a stellar junior season, not only serving as a leader for the team but racking up a plethora of stats in the process. 

In the 10 games Schierholz played in last season, the quarterback threw for 1,968 yards and scored 23 touchdowns with six of those touchdowns being scored on the rush. 

On Saturday, Schierholz — in his first drive as a senior — marched the Tigers down the field at a steady rate. Schierholz displayed his versatility —rushing for yards on the ground while also lofting well-thrown balls to Summit’s wide receiving unit.

After three minutes and 15 seconds, the Tigers’ drive ended with a toss from Schierholz to the upper lefthand corner of the end zone where first-year player Tyler Hodges was able to come down with the grab to put the Tigers up 7-0.

Following the Summit touchdown, the Tigers’ defensive unit sauntered onto the field to attempt to stop the Warriors. 

The Tigers looked well prepared on defense but the Warriors put a strong drive of their own together which ended with a red zone rushing touchdown, tying the score at 7-7 in the first quarter of play.

In the final moments of the first quarter, the Tigers turned the ball over to the Warriors. The turnover ended Schierholz’s time on the field for the day, getting one and a half possessions before allowing Summit’s junior quarterback, Hank Chabot, to get a few snaps. 

After the Warriors scored their second touchdown of the game, Chabot stepped up behind center to throw a sharp pass to a Summit wide receiver who took it down the sideline for a nearly 60-yard touchdown. 

The Warriors were met with staunch defense from the Tigers on its next drive — being forced to punt after failing to get to the first line marker. 

On the Tigers’ next drive, Chabot once again found an open wide receiver who took the ball all the way to the endzone for Summit’s third passing touchdown of the day. 

The score was enough to push the Tigers past the Warriors in its scrimmage, defeating the visiting team 21-14.

Beyond the unofficial win for the team, both head coach James Wagner and Schierholz were pleased with how the team presented itself with less than a week before its first official game of the season.

“I am feeling really good,” Schierholz said. “A lot of us guys are seniors and we have been here before but I think us seniors were leaders today and we brought up the intensity. Overall it was a great day. Young guys stepping up, guys who have never played football stepping up.”

“Super happy we were able to get out here and compete again,” Wagner said. “I felt good about it, glad everyone stayed healthy.”

Wagner was impressed by the leadership of Schierholz from the quarterback position, Eli Krawczuk on the offensive line and Zach Elam on defense.

Wagner said the team will spend the next few days reviewing film, making a game plan and then executing the game plan in practice prior to the Tigers’ season opener next Friday. 

“Our three things are going to be assignment, alignment and responsibility,” Schierholz said of what the team will focus on heading into its season opener. “We were there most plays but there were some plays where we were all over the field. We have to clean up how we are when we step on the field because come Friday these mistakes can’t happen, but it was a great place to see where we are at.”

Summit will host Woodland Park on Friday, Aug. 26 at Tiger Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

The Summit Daily News will livestream the entire game on its Facebook page. 

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