The West Warhawks held their annual Watermelon Scrimmage Thursday and for the majority of the players it felt like the real thing.
The eighth- and ninth-graders practiced in front of a sizeable crowd before getting to chow down on some watermelon.
Second-year coach Mike Ofer liked what he saw from both of his squads, especially his ninth-grade team.
"I thought they did pretty good out there today," Ofer said. "We have no superstars, but we got some solid football players."
One of those solid players is quarterback Chandler Schmidt. Schmidt ran the Warhawks offense very well during the scrimmage and made a number of good plays in the process.
"He's a quick athlete and a hard worker," Ofer said.
Schmidt said his goals for this season are to lead the Warhawks to a city title and try and score a touchdown every game. While scoring was definitely a part of the freshman's agenda, Schmidt enjoyed having the opportunity to be creative with the football.
"I like doing the options where I can either run or throw," he said.
If Schmidt isn't on the run, expect him to hand the ball off to fullback Austin Holladay throughout the season.
Holladay broke a number of long runs during the scrimmage and made several key blocks.
Coach Ofer enjoyed what he witnessed from his fullback's performance.
"He's a tough kid," Ofer said. "Just a plain old football player."
Holladay, meanwhile, gave much of the credit to his linemen for the holes he found.
"They're really tough," he said. "They open holes and do their jobs."
Ofer said he has been pleased with his team's effort during practice, especially with their fundamental blocking and tackling. Ofer said the team improves every day with the help of players like Schmidt and Holladay.
As the season draws closer, both players were looking forward to their first game Thursday at home against California Trail.
And that game is just the beginning of what the Warhawks hope will be a special season. A season that ends with a city championship.
"We're just trying to get better everyday," Holladay said. "So we can get to where we want to go."