Lodi, Lib­erty Ranch wrap up 7-on-7

Lodi News-Sentinel - - SPORTS - By Mike Bush

GALT — Let the count­down to­ward the start of the high school foot­ball sea­son. On Wed­nes­day, the Lodi High and Lib­erty Ranch High foot­ball teams met at Hawk Sta­dium for a 7-on-7 pass­ing game. That pit­ted each team’s of­fenses of quar­ter­backs, run­ning backs, tight ends and wide re­ceivers against de­fenses that fea­ture lineback­ers — in­side and out­side — plus de­fen­sive backs, free and strong safeties. “We had a lot of guys were miss­ing to­day,” said Lodi coach Ge­orge Due­nas. “So it was nice to see some of our younger guys that haven’t seen much (ac­tion) dur­ing the sum­mer, play­ing time.”

Lib­erty Ranch coach An­thony Linebaugh added, “All we wanted to do is im­prove on our abil­ity to get into for­ma­tions quickly and cor­rectly. And to ex­e­cute our re­spon­si­bil­i­ties; even if they weren’t per­fect to where the kids knew what to do as op­posed to them hav­ing to ask ques­tions. That was an im­prove­ment to­day.”

Lodi had the foot­ball first at mid­field. Like any foot­ball team that has the ball first, Lodi and Lib­erty Ranch had to move the ball at least 10 yards to earn a first down. Lodi and Lib­erty Ranch each had 15 tries on of­fense. Both squads scored on most of their drives.

Due­nas had quar­ter­backs Lo­gan Stout, a se­nior who re­turns for his third sea­son, and Adam Schall­berger, a sopho­more who started on the Lodi ju­nior var­sity team last fall, take snaps Wednes-

day. Stout also played wide re­ceiver, catch­ing nearly a half-dozen passes that in­cluded two for touch­downs. “They are both very strong com­peti­tors for quar­ter­back,” said Due­nas of Stout and Schall­berger. Linebaugh also had two quar­ter­backs split­ting time in tak­ing snaps. Ai­dan Carr and Isa­iah Ricci ro­tated in tak­ing snaps. Carr started on the Hawks’ JV team last fall. Ricci didn’t play last sea­son but played on the 2017 Lib­erty Ranch JV team. “Both have im­proved tremen­dously,” said Linebaugh of Carr and Ricci. “I’m look­ing for­ward to them to be key con­trib­u­tors to our team this year.” Wed­nes­day’s work­out was the last one of the sum­mer for both teams. Due­nas and Linebaugh plan to give their play­ers time off as the Fourth of July, which is next Thurs­day. Ac­cord­ing to the SacJoaquin Sec­tion’s web­site — cif­sjs.org — the dead pe­riod for high school foot­ball be­gins on Mon­day, July 8. High school foot­ball teams can still con­duct weight train­ing and con­di­tion­ing dur­ing the dead pe­riod. The first day of prac­tice is Mon­day, July 29. Lodi will kick­off its sea­son on Fri­day, Aug. 30 when it host Ceres in a non-league game at the Grape Bowl. Lib­erty Ranch wel­comes John­son of Sacra­mento, also a non­league game, at Hawk Sta­dium on Fri­day, Aug. 23.

MIKE BUSH/NEWS-SEN­TINEL

Above: Lodi quar­ter­back Lo­gan Stout takes the snap while a group of Flame wide re­ceivers run their routes dur­ing Wed­nes­day's 7-on-7 pass­ing game against Lib­erty Ranch at Hawk Sta­dium. Below: Lib­erty Ranch quar­ter­back Ai­dan Carr throws the foot­ball to Isa­iah Ricci as Lib­erty Ranch of­fen­sive co­or­di­na­tor Andy Petersen watches.

MIKE BUSH/NEWS-SEN­TINEL

Lodi safety Myles Lozano (wear­ing ban­dana) picks off a Lib­erty Ranch pass dur­ing Wed­nes­day's 7-on-7 pass­ing game at Hawk Sta­dium.

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