All other teams at Northumberland will begin practice this Monday but the football squad took to the practice field on Thursday, August 1. A seemingly small number of candidates, were there for the opening practice. For one thing, student athletes did not take seriously the need for a physical prior to beginning practice. Head Coach Aaron Lewis expected that number to jump by next week’s practice with more people getting their physicals in to the Northumberland Athletic Director.
Candidates spent two days in helmets before moving to shoulder pads on Saturday. Practices have been rigorous and Thursday’s was extended an hour longer. Coach Lewis explained to the players, “I wanted to push you. I wanted to see who would quit on us.” There seemed to be no takers on that one.
The 2019 Indians have major holes to fill prior to the August 30 first game date at Surry County. Defensive Coordinator Mac Mothershead stated he had only one returning starter but added, “We’re young but we’ll be faster and stronger.” Coach Lewis echoed his words saying, “We’ll have the fastest team in the district.”
While the team is busy getting in shape and learning new positions, the football field itself is in deplorable condition. One half of the embedded sprinkler system is not working and apparently hasn’t worked all summer. The middle of the field is completely bare of any vegetation. With both the football and field hockey teams set to play on the field, little time is left to get it in any kind of grass or turf in less than a month. It’s in the worst condition it has ever been according to long time observers.
Defensive Coordinator Mac Mothershead believes this year’s team with “faster and stronger” than ever.