Spring Football Games: Scores, Schedule, Thursday, May 22, 2015, Leesburg High School, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way, Leesburg, Florida 34748, Gerald Lacey, Staff Writer, Carver Heights Quarterback Club
Spring Football Games: Scores, Schedule, Thursday, May 22, 2015, Leesburg High School, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way, Leesburg, Florida 34748, Gerald Lacey, Staff Writer, Carver Heights Quarterback Club
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Spring Football Games: Scores, Schedule, Thursday, May 22, 2015, Leesburg High School, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way, Leesburg, Florida 34748, Gerald Lacey, Staff Writer, Carver Heights Quarterback Club
Spring Football Games: Scores, Schedule, Thursday, May 22, 2015, Leesburg High School, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way, Leesburg, Florida 34748, Gerald Lacey, Staff Writer, Carver Heights Quarterback Club
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Lake Sports     

Leesburg Plays Well If Forgetting Fumbles

September 5, 1990|By Joe Williams of The Sentinel Staff
Orlando Sentinel
Updated: Thursday, July 2, 2015, 3:23 p.m.

It was easy for Ken Weir, Leesburg High School's second-year head coach, to find areas to praise his
team on following the Orange Belt Conference Jamboree in Kissimmee.

Quarterback Steve Gooden, all 5-foot-4 of him, got good marks for the way he ran the offense.

The defense, with the exception of giving up a couple of big plays to St. Cloud and commiting a few
penalties, played well. Leesburg's offensive line also got a tip of the cap from its coach, as did, some
other players.

But, as easy as it was for Weir to find good things, it was just as easy to balance out his praise.
Fumbles topped the list.

Although it isn't unusual for a team running the type offense Leesburg runs - the Wishbone - to put the
ball on the ground, it was the kind of fumbles that particularly bothered Weir. Occassional fumbles on
pitchouts are expected. Frequent fumbles by ball carriers when they are being tackled aren't expected.

And, Leesburg had seven fumbles in splitting its two quarters Friday night. The Yellow Jackets lost to
St. Cloud, 12-0, and beat Gateway, 3-0. Leesburg didn't lose any of the fumbles, but just the idea of
seven fumbles wasn't comforting to Weir.

''We put the ball on the ground way too many times being tackled,'' Weir said. ''We didn't lose any of the
fumbles but just the idea the ball is coming lose is scary.''

It is especially scary because Leesburg's first opponent, Forest, isn't the kind of team that is into
returning favors if the Yellow Jackets have a couple of turnovers. Forest, a team with a lot of potential,
has a reputation of not beating itself.

It also has the ability to take advantage of any mental mistakes Leesburg might make defensively, like
the two that occurred against St. Cloud. The two big plays - one a 43-yard run by quarterback Tim Gatz
and a 77-yard pass from Gatz to Brandon Setzer - accounted for both of St. Cloud's touchdowns. To
Leesburg's credit, St. Cloud had to struggle for any other yardage it got in the half.

''I think early, even though it was only a jamboree, some of our kids were pretty high strung,'' Weir said.
''Because of that, we made some mistakes early. We were a little tight and we gave up a couple of big
plays, but other than that, we played pretty well.''

Even the penalties - six for 60 yards - didn't bother Weir much because they were penalties that were
caused by aggressiveness.

''We made some silly penalties with a little bit overly aggressive play, but that is not all bad,'' Weir said.

But the jamboree seemed to do what it was intended to do. It gave the Yellow Jackets coaches an idea
of where their team is and what they need to work on. And, you can bet, this week at practice, the
coaches are urging the players to hold onto the ball and to not commit and stupid penalties.

From the jamboree quotebook: ''We've got to work on the little things,'' Eustis Coach Kevin McClelland
said after his team beat Mount Dora, 14-6, in Friday night's Golden Triangle Jamboree. ''Conditioning
is one of the things we need to work on. I thought we played too straight up and we had that old Eustis
nemesis - stupid penalties. We have the capabilities of scoring from anywhere on the field. We have
some real good skill people. Our problem is, as I've said all along, interior line play.'' . . . ''I was real
pleased with a lot of the things we did,'' Mount Dora Coach Hal Cuddy said. ''We ran the ball inside
(mostly with Tracy Bean) real good. Our offensive line, I thought, did a real good job.'' . . . ''(Tavares
Coach) Mike (Doneff) has done a good job with them,'' Umatilla Coach Kent Stevens said about the
jamboree's surprise team, Tavares, which defeated Umatilla, 14-6. ''Them having Joe Joe Scott has
added another side to the coin. They have more speed than they had last year. I think we made a lot of
mistakes offensively and defensively but that's not to take anything away from Tavares. We have a lot of
work to do to get ready for next week.'

That ever-popular Lake Sentinel feature, high school football forecast, will return Thursday and
continue on Thursday's throughout the remainder of the years. Sportswriter Herky Cush, who joined
our staff midway through last football season, will be added to the lineup to challenge defending
champion Jeff Babineau for the 1990 title of top prep prognosticator in Lake County. But we all know
that your's truly will return to the form that led him to the 1989 crown.