tampabay.com

A wing-T and a prayer

By DOUG KATES
Published August 25, 2006


CLEARWATER - Calvary Christian hopes to use a Wing-T offense to pound the ball and, just when the opposition may not be paying attention, attack with the big play.

That's the strategy unveiled by first-year coach Chris Rivera, who left the Miami area to take over the Warriors program this season.

on the ground: Senior quarterback Lucas Spoerl will be key to the offense. He will be the main runner and hopes to stretch opposing defenses from sideline to sideline looking for a hole.

When Spoerl is not carrying the ball, look for senior Jaime Center and junior Justin Brodie to force the ball up the middle.

Brodie suffered a minor spinal fracture in the preseason and will miss the first four weeks. His impact will be felt when he is healthy and returns.

through the air: Spoerl's talent is not limited to running north and south. He will also be called upon to throw.

"With the wing-T, you have to have play action," Rivera said. "We'll try to hurt people with our passing and create big plays."

Blake Rowland, a junior tight end, will be one of the primary receivers. Rivera called him a "good threat."

Also a factor will be senior receivers Peter Barr and John Gammon.

DE-FENSE! DE-FENSE! The Warriors will play a 4-4 defense with 6-foot-3, 270-pound sophomore Thomas Hooten establishing himself at the line of scrimmage. Matt Mahoney, a senior inside linebacker, will have to make quick calls based on the play taking place.

"He's really vital in what we do," Rivera said. "He'll be pulling and trapping at the line."

The defense also will be anchored by senior outside linebacker Jordan Weaver, junior linebacker Patrick Tomeny and Spoerl at free safety.

KICKING GAME: Rivera has a ton of confidence in Center, who will be responsible for the kicking duties.

"He's solid," Rivera said. "He is capable of hitting from 40 and in. From 35 and in it's a sure thing. I'm very confident in his ability."

Barr will also punt.