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Lights hit the field one last time

MSU-N set to hold annual Spring game Saturday

 

April 20, 2017

Colin Thompson

A Montana State University-Northern wide receiver hauls in a pass during Wednesday's spring practice. The Lights are set to hold their annual Spring Game Saturday afternoon.

The Montana State University-Northern football team has been at it with spring practice for the past few weeks, but that all ends this weekend, as the Lights get set for their spring game Saturday.

The scrimmage, which will take place on the practice field on campus at MSU-N, is scheduled to start at 1 p.m.

“I think that we have seen a lot of positive things,” Northern head coach Aaron Christensen said. “We have been building up with everything these past few weeks and want to finish off the spring strong.”

One of the biggest storylines for the Lights this spring has been the battle at the quarterback position and, without any other live games, Saturday’s scrimmage will be one of the biggest tests thus far. With that in mind, all four quarterbacks, Bryce Missey, Holden Maki, Tommy Wilson and Dylan Cook, will see reps in the game as they try to stake their claim to the top spot.

“That’s going to be a really interesting battle to watch,” Christensen said. “I think that all four guys have played well at times and have done good things. It’s going to be really close and it’s probably going to go all the way through fall camp. But having four quality guys competing, that’s a good thing.”

The scrimmage will offer a lot of Northern players their first chance to wear a Light uniform in a game situation. Many of the players Saturday are redshirt-freshman and are taking part in their first spring practice. Cook is one of those players. Another is Jake Norby of Chinook, who is trying to solidify a spot on the two-deep at outside linebacker.

While there is competition pretty much across the board at Northern, one position that will get a long look from the coaching staff Saturday are the running backs. Like quarterback, the battle for the top spot on the depth chart has been fierce and is led by Jett Robertson, who was a backup a season ago. The others competing are Trey Blanchard and B.J. Peters.

“Having some live action will give us a good chance to evaluate the running backs,” Christensen said. “That’s one position where it’s kind of hard to really know how good a guy is until you go against some live tackling.”

Colin Thompson

Northern head coach Aaron Christensen watches all four Lights' quarterbacks throw during Wednesday's spring practice. All four are locked in a tight battle for the starting job heading into Saturday's Spring Game.

The offense also features some other key returning players such as wide receivers Sam Mix, Donovan Garner and Seth Roemmele as well as tight end Kagen Khameneh. The defense will be led by linebackers Garet Fowler and Brooks Dunn, as well as defensive lineman Mitch Harmon.

For the most part, the scrimmage will be live, but it will be controlled. The offense and defense will rotate in and out and play for a certain number of plays as they attempt to drive the field. Players will also be mixed and matched on both sides of the ball as the coaching staff tries to evaluate everybody.

“I think these past few weeks, we have been getting better and better,” Christensen said. “I think that we have built some good momentum and that’s something that we want to continue in the spring game and then into fall camp.”

The Northern spring game kicks off Saturday at 1 p.m.

 

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