Quarterbacks Grant Chiasson and Daniel Hazlewood combined to complete 63percent of their 51 passes for298 yards, with Chiassonand Casey Toussant connecting on consecutive touchdown plays of 34 and-45 yards, Wednesday night in Northwestern State's first scrimmage action of spring football practice.
Quarterbacks Grant Chiasson and Daniel Hazlewood combined to complete 63percent of their 51 passes for298 yards, with Chiasson and Casey Toussant connecting on consecutive touchdown plays of 34 and-45 yards, Wednesday night in Northwestern State's first scrimmage action of spring football practice.
The 2:30-long combinedpractice and scrimmage on achilly night in Turpin Stadium closed the first half ofthe Demons' first springpractice under new headcoach Jay Thomas. NSUtakes spring break nextweek and will resume practice April 9, with anotherscrimmage on April 13 andthe 24th Annual Joe Delaney Bowl spring game on-Saturday, April 20.
Wednesday night, theDemons ran 28 plays withlive tackling, another 32with 'thud' tackling haltingaction before players went tothe ground, and 28 moresnaps in 7-on-7 passing situations. Chiasson, a sophomore, threw for 161 yards on13-of-21 aim but was intercepted three times. Hazlewood, a redshirt freshman, went 19-of-30 for 137 yardsand was picked off once.
The touchdown passescame in the live tackling portion. On the first one, Toussant took a short sidelinerouteand was sprung downthe left sideline by a blockfrom Jovhan Jilbert. On thenext snap, he ran a deep corner route and hauled in anicelythrown Chiassonpass.Toussant had four receptions for 100 yards tolead 17 players who caughtpasses.
Adam Jones had a 41-yard interception runbackfora touchdown in the livecompetition while Chris-Cryer, Bert White and Russell Owens also picked offpasses in the competitivesegments of practice.
The Demons ran off theircombined 60 live and 'thud' snaps in 44 minutes, displaying a brisk pace undernew offensive coordinatorRobby Brown, who steered-Valdosta State's offense lastyear in a Division II nationalchampionship season.
'Across the board, we gotbetter. I saw a lot of peopleflying around the football, good things on both sides,' said Thomas. 'We had somegood explosive runs, somegood balls being thrown, butwe have to be more consistent in what we're doing, and in catching the football. It was the first time we'vedone this live, and under thelights, and on a chilly night, we were probably a little tookeyed up at times to relaxand make the play.
'There was a lot of energy. I saw the defense making some plays, and therewere some good pops outthere,' he said. 'We arebanged up in the offensiveline and so we scaled backthe number of live plays, butwe got good work in.' The biggest hit of thenight was delivered by junior tight end Chris Dever, who slammed into a tacklerand knocked him to theground to pick up a few moreyards on a nine-yard reception late in the session.
Two other quarterbacks, junior Don Canyon andsophomore Keenon Gibson, sat out with relatively minorinjuries.