By Lee Horton
Peninsula Daily News
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JOYCE — Lacking experience and coming off a 0-9 season, Crescent geared up and went to the basics this offseason.
The Loggers donned their pads and worked on the most fundamental of football fundamentals.
“This is the first summer we had kids wear gear,” Crescent coach Darrell Yount said.
“I've never been super-anxious to get kids hitting, but with so many first-time [football] players we had to teach proper tackling.”
Nearly half of last year's roster was eight-graders or freshmen, so the 2014 Loggers will still be young and likely still be in building and learning mode.
The Crescent coaches will continue to devote time to teaching skills, but the hope is that last season and the summer sessions will help quicken that learning process when practices begin Wednesday
“We were really young last year, but we return that nucleus,” Yount said. “They have another year of experience. Not just another year of football, but another year of being athletes.
“We hope to speed up the learning curve a little bit, and we hope to make quicker progress early.”
Returning for the Loggers is senior Zach Fletcher, who had a strong second half of 2013.
“He's Mr. Everything,” Yount said. “He led us in all-purpose yards last year.”
Sophomore Neal Peppard will move back from the line to play quarterback.
Crescent doesn't have many offensive linemen and running backs returning, but it does have a slew of receiver-types, so the plan is to spread the defense out and go to the air.
“We're going to have to throw the ball around,” Yount said.
Along with Fletcher, another top receiver at Peppard's disposal will be K.C. Spencer, who became an offensive threat as an eighth-grader in the latter half of 2013.
Wyatt McNeese, a sophomore, is the one big lineman returning, and Yount said McNeese is even bigger and stronger this season.
Senior Cody Wolfer is likely to line up alongside McNeese as the starting center.
Another important returner is Collin West, who was planning to transfer and play for Port Angeles, but decided to come back to Crescent for his senior season.
West could be an important piece to the Loggers' thin running game.
Crescent should be fine as far as numbers are concerned after 16 kids participated in offseason practices.
“In 8-man football, that's most of our roster,” Yount said.
Sports Editor Lee Horton can be reached at 360-417-3525 or at email@example.com.
Previous camp previews
Neah Bay: http://tinyurl.com/NeahBayCamp
Clallam Bay: http://tinyurl.com/ClallamBayCamp
Port Angeles: http://tinyurl.com/RidersCamp