One more fine tune opportunity

Tigers host Robinson in final scrimmage


The 2013 Tiger team captains are seniors (l to r) Pete Heintze, James David, LaDontice Coates, Clayton Gibbs, Austin Caffey and Elijah Brooks. 
Reporter/Cliff Dungan The 2013 Tiger team captains are seniors (l to r) Pete Heintze, James David, LaDontice Coates, Clayton Gibbs, Austin Caffey and Elijah Brooks. Reporter/Cliff Dungan The Rockdale Tigers will have one more opportunity to fine tune when they host Robinson at Tigerland Field Thursday at 7 p.m.

The Tigers are coming off a scrimmage with Marlin where they performed up to expectations.

“I was real pleased with the effort, especially on defense,” said Rockdale Coach Jeff Miller. “I wanted us to fly around and swarm on the ball and we achieved both of those goals.”

Thursday, Miller will push his team a little harder.

“ We’re going to throw a lot more at them this week,” he said. “We’relooking toseehowmuch they know. This will separate some kids from the pack as far as playing time goes.

“We’re getting closer to that first game so we need to fine tune our execution on offense. I want to see the linemen hold their blocks and the running backs hit the holes a little quicker.


Kelsey Thurman, with newest addition Carter, is a former Lady Tiger who will coach the junior varsity softball team. Kelsey Thurman, with newest addition Carter, is a former Lady Tiger who will coach the junior varsity softball team. “We just need to continue to improve in all areas.”

The Tigers practiced for the first time in the late afternoon on Monday and did not adjust very well.

“We had a really poor practice on Monday,” Miller said. “I feel like we took a step backwards. My job is to make sure we don’t do that again. We have a chance to be a pretty good football team and we can’t afford to take steps backwards.”

The Tigers came away from the Marlin scrimmage injury free.

Robinson was 6-4 last season and are picked fifth in District 18-3A while returning 10 starters.

New coaches

Miller has added two new members to his staff with definite Rockdale connections.

He added Slugger Hamrick to his staff, father of his current offensive coordinator Hunter Hamrick.

“We both tried to convince him he was bored being retired,” Miller said. “I guess he just got tired of us nagging him. As soon as he got back out there, he was back in all the way.”

The elder Hamrick is a legendary coaching figure in these parts, having retired two years ago as the winningest coach in Bremond history in his 13 years there.

Hamrick led the Tigers to a 103- 47 record while he was there and took them to the Class 1A Division II state final in 2007.

Slugger Hamrick is the son of one of the winningest coaches in Texas high school history, Bill Hamrick, who coached for 47 years from 1950 to 1996 and won 160 games.

“It’s different for me because I’ve never had anyone around who has sat in my chair before. He gets a lot of respect everywhere.”

Hamrick, who lives outside of Cameron, is a part-time hire.

Miller also snagged up Kelsey Morgan Thurman to be the top assistant in softball to brand new softball coach Lauren Robertson.

In her first coaching job, Thurman has been teaching third grade in the RISD and has two children.

Thurman, a University of Texas graduate and her RHS class valedictorian in 2002, was a three-sport standout for the Lady Tigers during her playing days and played collegiately at Mary Hardin-Baylor.

“She was a heck of a player and she’s passionate about softball and Rockdale athletics,” Miller said. “It just made a lot of sense.

“I told her that if she turned us down, I was going to call her dad,” joked Miller. “I was calling her first as a courtesy.”

Miller was put in a bind when Trey Young (football assistant, softball assistant) resigned at the end of July to take a job in Cameron.

Hamrick and Thurman fit into the two jobs perfectly.

Also, Anna Maldonado returns as junior high tennis coach.

Junior high

Junior high players may purchase their own football cleats, but they must be black (some white trim is acceptable). The school has a limited supply.

For those who do not go early to get equipment, coaches will hand out remaining equipment on the first day of school Monday, Aug. 26.

Practices begin Tuesday, Aug. 27 at 7 to 8:50 a.m. for seventh graders and at 2:51 to 4:40 p.m. for eighth graders.

Volleyball practices begin Tuesday, Aug. 27.

Seventh graders will practice from 6:45 to 8:50 a.m. and eighth graders from 3:40 to 5 p.m.

All athletes must have physicals and other paper work turned in and on file to participate and get their equipment.

Tickets

Beginning Monday, Aug. 26, anyone wanting to purchase reserve seat season tickets may do so in the athletic office from 8 a.m. to noon.

The cost of season tickets will be $30 for five home games.


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