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High school football teams suit up to play in jamborees

By: Warren Mayes

Curious to get a look at your high school football team before the season kicks off Aug. 18?

You are in luck as many area schools will take part in jamborees Friday (Aug. 11).

The action gets under way first as it traditionally does at Parkway West. The will be the seventh year the Longhorns have held a jamboree.

“We are ready,” said Longhorns coach Jeff Duncan. “We are excited to see where we are at as we start the 2017 season and excited to hit someone besides ourselves. I like the fact that we get so see players in live, game action, before we play our first game.

“We return only one starter on offense and three starters on defense so this gives our players some great experience before Week 1.”

Parkway West welcomes Fort Zumwalt East, St. Charles West and Westminster Christian Academy to its facilities.

In a jamboree, each team will face the other opponents. Each squad will have 12 plays on offense and 12 plays on defense. There is no kicking game. The ball is placed on the 40 yard line going in toward the end zone and a team begins.

Parkway Central coach Mark Goldenberg is looking forward to seeing his Colts on the gridiron. The jamboree will offer a valuable game-like experience for his team.

“The Colts are excited to hit someone else,” Goldenberg said. “We are trying to get healthy and be ready to compete. I think it is a good barometer to see where you are things get a little stale after all summer and two weeks of the same thing we want to get into our normal routine.

“We need to get the speed of the game it is so hard to simulate game speed in practice.”

Parkway North again has a big jamboree split into two sessions. The first one begins at 6 p.m. with the second one starting at 7:30 p.m.

Vikings coach Bob Bunton is a big fan of the jamborees.

“The jamboree is a good way to find out where your team is at from a varsity level perspective,” Bunton said. “I also think that most teams are at a point after summer practices and two weeks of fall practices to go against someone different.

“I also like jamborees because it is an opportunity to find out about your entire roster. We like to play just about everybody we have. I think for the reserves it is a reward for them to not compete as a scout team like they do in practice.”

Here is the schedule of area jamborees and the teams taking part in them that responded to requests for information. All the action is Friday night.

5 p.m.

At Parkway West. Teams: Parkway West, Fort Zumwalt East, St. Charles West and Westminster Christian Academy.

6 p.m.

At Parkway North: Team: De Smet, Chaminade, Lutheran North, Pattonville.

At Duchesne. Teams: Duchesne, Wright City, Priory, DuBourg.

At St. Dominic. Teams: St. Dominic, St. Charles, Trinity Catholic and Orchard Farm.

At Oakville. Teams: Oakville, Eureka, Vianney and Mehlville.

6:30 p.m.

At Lutheran St. Charles. Teams: Lutheran St. Charles, Liberty, Lutheran South, O’Fallon Christian.

7 p.m.

At Parkway Central. Teams: Parkway Central, Timberland, and Fort Zumwalt South

At Francis Howell. Teams: Francis Howell, McCluer North, CBC, Ladue.

At Fort Zumwalt North: Teams: Fort Zumwalt North, Warrenton, Hazelwood East, and Hazelwood West.

At Hillsboro: Teams: MICDS, Hillsboro

7:30 p.m.

At Parkway North. Teams: Francis Howell North, De Smet, Parkway North, Parkway South.

All the coaches will be checking on various items to see how his team performs.

“We are looking for players to be disciplined and (show) effort,” Duncan said. “We can correct other things but we must play with great discipline and effort to be successful.”

Bunton agreed.

“We are looking at how we perform under game-like situation such as the opponent and the atmosphere of a Friday night,” Bunton said. “We know we need this because we face a very good opponent in Parkway Central in Week 1. We hope this will get us to raise our level of play before we play the Colts.”

The Longhorns are coming off a solid 8-5 season. Parkway West also experienced success in the postseason.

Duncan wants to build on that. So does the school and its fans.

“Enthusiasm around the program and school is tremendous,” Duncan said. “We have our annual Red & Blue Night on Friday where all of our fall sports teams are on display. It’s great to see all of the athletes as they prepare kick off their season. We always have a great crowd and support from our community, parents and fans.

“Our administration and crew do a great job prepping for the jamboree and Red & Blue Night. Anyone who is visiting will have a great time and get to see a lot pride and enthusiasm around West High.”

Goldenberg said Parkway Central wants a good turnout.

“We hope there are a lot of people we will have our Red and White night at school and hope everyone stays for the jamboree,” Goldenberg said. “At Central, we want all visiting teams to have a great experience and we want them to come back so it is very important to us that it is done right.”

The huge jamboree at Parkway North features eight schools.

Bunton believes another big crowd will be on hand.

“Our Jamboree has had great attendance with eight teams and some of the best football programs in St. Louis,” Bunton said. “There will be some very high level players and teams.

“We enjoy hosting this Jamboree. We have great interest in our football program and I think our game night environment of a big crowd, a wonderful videoboard, and great football programs really has become an honor to host.”


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