First Look: Bobcats see plenty to work on in benefit game

Friday, August 30, 2019
Berryville junior quarterback J.D. Smith hands off to senior fullback Brent Parsons in Monday’s benefit game against Elkins.
Charles Chappell /

By Scott Loftis

Preseason football serves multiple purposes, one of which is to identify areas where there is room for improvement.

Berryville coach Doug Shott said there were plenty of teachable moments during Monday’s benefit matchup against Elkins at Bobcat Stadium.

The teams alternated on four series of 10 plays apiece before playing one live quarter, minus the kicking game. No score was kept.

While Berryville’s offense made some nice plays in the running game, the Bobcats’ passing attack struggled.

Meanwhile, Elkins struck for several long pass plays. Shott said he wasn’t surprised by the Elks’ big-play ability.

“We knew coming in that their skill kids could pose us some problems,” he said. “They exposed some places we need to get better at. My hat’s off to them.”

Berryville, meanwhile, struggled to protect its quarterbacks.

“There’s a lot of places where we’re either young or inexperienced,” Shott said. “We felt good about where our passing game is at leading up to tonight. But I don’t care if you’ve got John Elway playing quarterback, if the line doesn’t give him some time or the receivers don’t run the right routes, it’s going to be tough.”

Shott said Berryville’s players were disappointed. The Bobcats’ Purple and Gold scrimmage was canceled because of lightning last week, so Monday was the first time they played in full uniform.

“Everyone wants to start off on a good note,” Shott said. “Like I told the kids, this scrimmage doesn’t mean anything for our win-loss record. It showed us some things we need to get better at. The good thing is, we’ve got some good hard-nosed kids.”

Berryville will open the regular season at home on Sept. 6 against West Fork.

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