Chiefs end pre-season in huge victory

Carol City beats Boyd Anderson, 24-7

Akilah Laster | 8/29/2013, 9 a.m.
Two former teammates and Carol City alumni patted each other on the back as the Chiefs closed out their 24-7 ...
Carol City head coach Aubrey Hill on sideline. Photo by Akilah Laster

Two former teammates and Carol City alumni patted each other on the back as the Chiefs closed out their 24-7 preseason victory against Boyd Anderson (Lauderdale Lake) last Friday night at Traz Powell. Former head coach Harold Barnwell (1988 alumnus) who is now the school's athletic director likely slept well knowing that the program he has been rebuilding for five years is in the capable hands of first-year Head Coach Aubrey Hill (1990 alumnus).

“Having [Barnwell] there is like invaluable mentorship right on the sideline,” Hill said. “The pride that I have being on the sideline at my alma mater can’t be explained.”

While the Chiefs had a slow start in quite an under-whelmingly decisive win, they still have a little ways to go before they will show any signs of being ready for a powerhouse-laden district. With the help of the defense, who stepped up against the Cobras with two blocked punts and a interception by junior defensive back Rashard Fenton that he ran back for a 26-yard touchdown, the momentum swung to the Chiefs going into the half.

“Hey, that’s always a good thing,” Hill said. “We made some plays on defense but we have a lot of things to clean up.”

Hill and his players are hopeful in seeing improvements and utilized the game to mix things up a bit, starting their back-up quarterback junior Edward Loveland over senior quarterback and University of Miami-commit Trayon Gray. Loveland, looked like anything but a backup, as he completed 100 percent of his first six passes, including a 14-yard touchdown pass to senior receiver Kenny Lewis. Unfortunately, Loveland went down early in the second after a late hit forced him to the sideline with a shoulder injury for the remainder of the game. Gray was forced to enter in what seemed earlier than intended and struggled with only 1-of-5 completions initially.

“It was a good learning point,” he said. “I came out too hyped and I was rushing things.

He finished with 112 passing yards. Despite a slow start, Gray showed resilience late in the game with two major off-balanced touchdown passes to Marquis Hooks and Shaunteal Seay that propelled the Chiefs to their 17-point lead.

Hill, who was an assistant at the Universities of Florida and Miami, says that he took several things away from his head coaching debut, including the joy of winning.

“The fun is in winning,” Hill said. “There are going to be some mistakes but you find a way to come out with a win and move on to the next game.”

The Chiefs expect vast improvements before Friday’s game against Class 8A regional runner-up Killian, who runs a Wing-T offense that can cause problems for any unprepared defense.