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HS Football Tab: Salisbury Hornets at a glance

Salisbury Glance

2014: 6-7, 4-1 (second place) Central Carolina Conference), seeded 8th 2A playoffs, lost 56-7 to Owen in second round
Coach: Ryan Crowder: 3rd year, 8-16
Starters returning: 6 offense, 5 defense
Schedule: Definitely friendlier with South Rowan, Ledford and Surry Central replacing West Rowan, Southeast Guilford and South Iredell.
“We still play Lake Norman and they’ve got about 3,000 students, but we do have more 50/50 games this season,” Crowder said. “The last two years there were some games that we went into with a 1 in a 100 chance.”
Players to watch:
• Receiver Will Steinman — A shoulder injury sidelined him part of last season, but he still caught five TD passes. Fast and tall (6-foot-2), he had 10 catches for 145 yards in the playoff win against Surry Central.
“The field is 160 feet wide and we want to make opponents defend all of it,” Crowder said.
• Linebacker D.J. Alexander — At 6-3, 237 pounds, he’s the most physically imposing player on the Salisbury defense. As a junior, Alexander, who also plays basketball, made six tackles for loss and had two sacks.
• DB Darius Jackson — The all-county stud’s best position may be free safety, but he’s such a good tackler the Hornets are likely to move him closer to the line of scrimmage.
“If he makes a tackle at free safety, it’s still a 4-yard gain and a positive play for the opponent,” Crowder said. “We’ll move him around a lot, depending on the matchup.”
• Cornerback Shaquez Strickland: The Hornets are confident he can handle one side of the field, but they’ll enter the season still trying to identify the right guy for the opposite side.
• Nick Austin: The sophomore is a 6-1, 205-pound athlete capable of playing safety, linebacker or running back. He’ll probably be used mostly on defense.
“He’s already one our best football players,” Crowder said. “He’s got a big future.”

Salisbury schedule

Aug. 21 …………………………………South Rowan

Aug. 28 …………………………………at East Rowan

Sept. 4 ………………………………….at Carson

Sept. 11 ………………………………….Lake Norman

Sept. 18 ………………………………….at Ledford

Sept. 25 …………………………………..Surry Central

Oct. 2………………………………………..Open

Oct. 9 ……………………………………….East Davidson

Oct. 16 ………………………………..at Lexington

Oct. 23 ……………………………….Thomasville

Oct. 30 …………………………………..West Davidson

Nov. 6 ……………………………………at North Rowan

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