Tigers use tournament to get ready

Posted on 06 July 2017 by LeslieM

By Gary Curreri

Blanche Ely High School quarterback Noel Wilson said events like the recent Miami Dolphins 7-on-7 tournament are crucial to the Tigers’ success in the fall.

It is really important because we are out here getting the experience,” said the 15-year-old who lives in Pompano Beach, who will be a sophomore in the fall. “I love the experience of playing football. This will showcase my talent.”

Wilson was on the junior varsity last year and hopes to make the varsity team this season. Events like the 7-on7s will get him that experience by getting the repetitions with the skill position players. Playing against some of the top teams in the Tri-County area, Blanche Ely reached the quarterfinals of the tournament.

Our main (team) goal is to win the state championship,” Wilson said. “These events are also important because you always want to be the best. These tournaments will show you the things you need to work on.”

Blanche Ely’s Nick Ricks, who coaches the linebackers on the varsity team, said the Tigers have a mix of older and younger players so they put two teams in the tournament.

Sometimes, when you go to 7-on-7s, the young guys don’t get a chance to play,” Ricks said. “The older guys want to play because they have already put in the work. I think it was a good idea by (new head coach Calvin) Davis to enter two teams so the young guys can get some experience. Obviously, it paid off.

These events build confidence and camaraderie,” Ricks added. “We take most of the skill guys. Since it is the summer, some guys are away, but we bring the guys who are committed. We even have some kids who are going into the ninth grade and haven’t experienced anything like this and they didn’t even look shell-shocked. Those are the kind of things we were looking for.”

For the 10th consecutive year, the Miami Dolphins hosted the three-day event, which also consisted of a life skills symposium at Hard Rock Stadium that preceded the tourney. The symposium focused on character development, practical life lessons and specific skill training.

The event was followed by two days of 7-on-7 action on the gridiron at Plantation’s Central Park. There were 44 high school teams from the Tri-County area and an additional 23 teams that also competed in the youth tournament, which consisted of three age groups (10U, 12U and 14U).

Palmer released from hospital

Deerfield Beach High School cornerback Demetrius Palmer was back at practice this week after being released from Broward Health Medical Center last Wednesday.

Palmer, who will be a senior in the fall, was injured in a car accident on May 28 that killed teammate T.J. Bradley. He hasn’t participated in the offseason conditioning workouts and said he is a few weeks way from returning to the field.

He has a doctor’s appointment coming up to determine if his dislocated shoulder from the accident needs surgery. He also had injuries to his left arm, his face and head were scraped up when he slid 65 ft. into a pole.

Bradley’s mother had rented a red 2017 Corvette for an after-prom party and the 19-year-old teen reportedly lost control under wet conditions on State Road 7 north of Sunrise Boulevard. The car hit a curb and flipped several times and ejected both teens. Palmer was in a coma for eight days after the accident, according to Bucks coach Jevon Glenn.

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