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Day 15: Hammer Time!

August 21, 2009

It was “Hammer Time” at Russek Field Friday afternoon as the West Liberty University football team popped the pads in its final “full-go” scrimmage of the preseason.

    After brisk 1-on-1 and 7-on-7 sessions, most of the veteran skill position performers were in spectator mode for the 50-minute scrimmage. That gave head coach Roger Waialae and his staff a chance to focus on the players making one last push for a spot on the 2-deep for next Saturday’s season opener at nationally-ranked Edinboro.hammer time

    Arvin Bell and Jimmy Burress split most of the carries from the tailback spot during the 50-minute scrimmage with freshman quarterbacks Ryley Wright, Chris Kiedaisch and Tyler Tucci all getting their chances under center.

    The defense had another good day overall but there were some bright spots from the offense in the spirited scrimmage. Bell had the best run of the afternoon, pinballing off a couple of would-be tacklers and caroming into the end zone from 15 yards out to end one drive.

    Kiedaisch hooked up with freshman WR Brandon Schroeder for another score. Tucci, who has been getting some reps at wide receiver as well as quarterback in recent days, cashed in the longest scoring play of the scrimmage when he ran under a well-thrown ball from Wright for a 45-yard touchdown.

    Junior QB Zach Amedro had experienced one of his few “off” days of the month on Thursday but bounced back impressively in both sessions on Friday. In the morning, Amedro did a good job of finding Bell, Eddie Hills and Kevon Calhoun out of the backfield during a brief 7-on-7 period with the No. 1 offense taking on the No. 1 defense.

    Hills highlighted the afternoon’s 7-on-7 segment by outleaping junior safety Jayson Keyser to pull down a 46-yard heave from Amedro for a first down at the 21. On another occasion, wide receiver Kashif Walls turned a short pass into a long gainer with a 25-yard run after the catch. For the most part, however, the defense was able to avoid the big play by forcing the offense to settled for underneath stuff.

    A bright spot of the morning session was the return to action of offensive lineman Will Alvarez. The 6-5, 320-pound transfer from Virginia Tech had missed the past few workouts due to a minor injury. He took part in the morning and afternoon workouts and was especially impressive in the 1-on-1 sessions. Also doing well in the 1-on-1s were defensive linemen Isaac Omaits, Matt Betz, Derrick Rovira and Tony Montgomery. Alvarez and Jose Baez stood out on the offensive line.

    The Hilltoppers will close out preseason camp on Saturday with a single workout at 1 p.m. before taking Sunday off in preparation for the start of classes – and Game Week – on Monday.

    Sports Information Director Matt Watson snapped the photos and provided the wrapup from Friday’s practice. To access the pictures, click on the following link: Training Camp Photos: Day 15

    In the feature photo, senior safety Mike Kane (24) lowers the boom on sophomore wide receiver Pauly Ferguson (18) during the afternoon scrimmage.

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