The youthful Daleville Warhawks football team hit the road last week to take part in a 7-on-7 competition in Slocomb on July 1.

Daleville was joined by Slocomb and Cottonwood in the 7-on-7 competition, which featured a rain shower near the end.

“We needed it bad,” Daleville coach Will Garner said of the competition. “It’s always great when you can travel to a place you know the competition is going to be good and be able to get some reps against someone other than yourself.

“That’s really what we needed this summer with the young group that we have. More competition against some good guys like Cottonwood and Slocomb was really good for us.”

In the 7-on-7 competition, Daleville – which will feature a run-heavy offense in 2021 – got to see freshman quarterback Omarion Pinckney make some throws that he’s likely going to be called on to make this season.

“What was nice to see is all the stuff we threw and completed and had success with was stuff that we will be able to do on Friday nights. It wasn’t just something we designed and drew up just for the 7-on-7,” Garner said. “It was purely our scheme and it showed us that Omarion at quarterback can complete balls and complete stuff when we need it. When we need to – and want to – he can get it done and we also had some receivers step up in some big spots yesterday.”

One of those receivers to step up was freshman Marcus Smith, who made a number of big plays including hauling in a leaping 40-yard touchdown catch over a pair of defenders.

“Marcus is going to be a heck of a ball player on both sides of the football for us in the future,” Garner said. “He’s starting to mentally get it and tighten it up and starting to understand that he can do this. His physical ability is off the charts and I think he’s going to be a special football player for us in the future.”

The Warhawks will head to Zion Chapel on July 8 for an OTA and then host Zion Chapel for another OTA on July 15.

“The OTAs will be a little more team oriented, which will be fun,” Garner said. “The line can get involved and we’ll do some one-on-ones and 7-on-7 stuff but also a lot more team stuff.

“We’re going to have to be able to run the ball to win ball games (this season) and during this OTA time it will allow us to work on that and still be able to throw the ball some, too.”

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