By TONY EIERDAM
AZLE – On a hot and muggy evening in their final tune-up of then preseason, the Mineral Wells Rams looked steady on offense and hit hard on defense and appear to be ready to begin the 2013 season.
The Rams will open the season at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 30 against the Graham Steers at Ram Stadium.
The scrimmage at Azle was split into two parts.
The first part was a “controlled” scrimmage where each team’s first and second team offenses and defenses ran plays against each other, and the second part was a practice game of two 12-minute, timed quarters to simulate an actual game.
The Hornets won the “timed” portion of the scrimmage, 14-0, as elusive quarterback Trevor Boiles scored on a pair of runs.
But the MWHS offense, led by junior quarterback Caleb Acosta, had its share of success before injuries befuddled the Rams. Acosta lost two running backs, Josh Hardee and Devon Edmond, who were injured and removed from the practice game for precautionary reasons. Lineman
Preston Hoskins, who starts on defense and rotates on offense, also was removed from the game for precautionary reasons.
But despite the injuries, the Rams suffered no cramps on a night ripe for those setbacks.
“The best news is we proved we are in great condition,” Rams head coach Chuck Lawrence said. “We didn’t have a single cramp, but the bad news is the three injuries to go along with Jarrod Bennett who is already out.
“We won’t know about those guys (until further evaluation). But we hung in there against a 4A school with twice as many kids on its roster compared to ours.
“We played a lot of players and we got a lot of good film – and we have got a lot of correcting to do – but that is what these scrimmages are all about.
“Our kids played a lot of snaps, and I am proud of them. They hung in there and we got some good work in.
“We got Graham at home next week and we will have to come back to work (beginning Saturday). We will get a game plan together and practice it all week to prepare for the opener.”
Azle’s scores came on runs of 36 and five yards, respectively, the first on a quarterback keeper and the second on a scramble as a result of heavy pressure by the Rams’ defense.
The Rams’ offense showed promise through the air as Acosta completed five of 11 passes for 58 yards, the longest a 19-yard completion to Grant Peters.
Acosta also connected with Colby Kissinger on a 60-yard bomb that would have resulted in a touchdown, but the play was called back on a holding penalty.