Hawks look strong on defense in spring practice
If what Charlie Patterson observed over spring football practice last month is any indication, the Hanahan Hawks could be salty on defense this upcoming fall.
“We feel pretty good about the guys we’ve got (on defense),” Patterson said. “I’d say, without question, this is the best defense we’ve had since I’ve been here. We’ve got a lot of guys with experience. We’ve got a lot of guys that can run. We’ve got a lot of guys that will hit you.”
The Hawks bring back 10 starters on that side of the ball and have a number of others that got substantial experience in 2012.
Depth is an asset for sure as the Hawks aim for big things. Last season, they finished 11-2 and advanced to the third round of the Class AAA playoffs.
The offense is a lot less seasoned and that showed up over spring practice. Missteps and mental blunders were quickly exposed.
“With all those new guys over there, any mistake they make it shows up,” Patterson said. “It’s not like we can get a false sense of being good (on offense) because they’re going up against good people.”
Defensive linemen Vontrell Grant, Jacob Garibay, Corbin Heyward and Dominique Lucas combine with linebacker corps Lyndon Young, Ronald England, Avery Drake and Marquise Mack to form a stout front eight for the Hawks. Drake is the lone non-returning starter.
Free safety Marlon Washington leads the group coming back in the secondary. Andrew Conyers and Deandre Thompson are the corners.
Kyle Spigner will be back as kicker/punter.
On offense, the Hawks return offensive linemen Jacob Billings and Anthony Tolliver. They are returning starters along with wide receiver Terrell Green.
Quarterback Mason Schwerzler takes over for Anthony Smalls, a North-South selection last season.
Quan Wade and Haven Horlback give Hanahan a 1-2 punch at running back.
Along with Green, the Hawks are athletic at wide receiver, Patterson said. Sam Denmark and Kahlim Denmark are outside with Green, while Chase Pfaff, Saaehim Brooks and Greg Casselman. Corbin Heyward and Chase Patterson are the tight ends.