By Rob Kiser
Both Piqua football coach Bill Nees and Miami East football coach Max Current understand the difference between summer 7-on7s and what will take place, beginning in several weeks with pads on.
That said, they also know how to get something out of it — as both teams did in an evenly played matchup at Alexander Stadium/Purk Field Tuesday.
“I know a lot of people get hyped up about them and travel a long way to play in them,” Current said. “I don’t put a lot of stock in them (the outcome). What they are is an excellent teaching tool, both on offense and defense.”
Both coaches liked what they saw from their teams.
With the first team playing three eight-play series on offense and defense, both Miami East and Piqua scored one touchdown and had one interception.
Piqua was coming off playing three games Saturday in the Northmont 7-on-7s and playing Northwestern Monday.
“I think we made a lot of progress,” Nees said. “I know everyone says that after 7-on-7s, but I feel like we really did make a lot of progress.”
Miami East quarterback Ian Gengler was 12 of 21 passing with one touchdown and one interception for 145 yards and saved his best throw for last.
On the final play of the Vikings third series, he found Blaine Brokschmidt in the right corner of the end zone for a 31-yard touchdown and Brokschmidt added an interception as well.
“Piqua is one of the bigger schools in our area,” Current said. We kind of put this together at the last second. We had practice this morning and came over and played in this. It was good for our kids to go up against a big school like that.”
Piqua quarterback Mick Karn picked off a pass on Miami East’s first series before he took any snaps at quarterback.
Karn completed 12 of 24 passes for 189 yards with one touchdown and one interception. His touchdown was a 51-yard pass to Owen Toopes.
“All the teams we played in the 7-on-7s are playoff teams,” Nees said. “Max’s (Current) background is in defense. So, they are always going to be fundamentally sound and challenge you with their defense. And they gave us a different look on offense. Every team we played gave us a little bit different look on offense.”
Piqua is also holding camps for grades 1-6 and 7-8 this week.
“And we have our camp Thursday and Friday and we will be ready to role into two-a-days from there,” Nees said.
Practice will begin on July 30 for Piqua, with games that matter to follow soon after.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.