Defense Makes Plays, Forces Offense to Start Slow in Scrimmage

Defense Makes Plays, Forces Offense to Start Slow in Scrimmage

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – In exactly two weeks, the Northern Arizona football team will hit the field at Stephen F. Austin for its season opener. In the meantime, NAU will focus on making plays and minimizing mistakes as it had its second scrimmage of fall camp this afternoon at the Walkup Skydome.

Unlike last week's scrimmage, which saw the offense score early and what seemed like often today had a different spin. The defense came out blocking well and with the quick hands of junior transfer LeAndre Vaughn registering an interception, they definitely had the momentum to start.

 "All week the defense had been giving us different looks," senior wide receiver Dejzon Walker said. "We knew we had to come out today and get after it if we were going to get better."

Head Coach Jerome Souers was impressed with what he saw on defense today and the improvement they had made at all positions.

"Our back end covered really well," Souers said. "They all played a lot stingier and it was great to see. I thought we had good pressure on the quarterback and the defensive line played well."

Despite the solid play from defense, the offense was still able to get on the board as it came away with five touchdowns. Sophomore running back Corbin Jountti recorded the longest touchdown of the day as he broke through tackles and ran 60 yards to the end zone. Coming away with a pair of scores was Walker, adding touchdowns of 17 and 46 yards, respectively.

"We're excited about Dejzon. He had such an unfortunate injury going into his senior year, so the fact that he had to redshirt really helped," Souers said. "His maturity, attitude, work ethic really, and play making ability showed today."

In addition to touchdowns by Jountti and Walker, senior running back Casey Jahn and junior transfer wide receiver Kendyl Taylor both reached the end zone.

"We didn't start off too well. It was bumpy to start, but we have a lot of playmakers across the board," said Walker. "We were all able to lean on each other and get things going. We're a family. We knew we had to get in the end zone and we made it happen."

NAU has now scored nine touchdowns total in its first-two scrimmages. This upcoming week, the 'Jacks will hold their scrimmage on Thursday at 4 p.m.

 "Off the field we have become a stronger team," Souers said. "Our team chemistry and leadership core is great and we have really grown over the past couple of weeks. We still need to refine our skills so that when we get to game time we don't have sloppy mistakes. All in all, with two weeks to go I'm excited about how this team looks."  

Upcoming Practice Schedule

August 24 – 9:30 a.m. and 4 p.m.

August 25 – 9:30 a.m.

August 26 – 9:30 a.m. and 4 p.m.

August 27 – 4 p.m. (Scrimmage)

August 28 – 9 a.m.

August 29 – 4 p.m.

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