Injuries during two scrimmages dealt a couple of blows to the Chico Dragons’ postseason hopes.
Darrion Riggs, one of the Dragons’ biggest playmakers on both sides of the ball, was lost to a broken leg in the first scrimmage. In the second, receiver Marshall Anderle went down to a torn MCL.
“We’ve been looking at younger kids all of two-a-days,” head coach Stephen Carter said. “They are going to have to step up and fill those spots.”
Chico opens the season against the Frost Polar Bears Saturday night at Bedford’s Pennington Field. Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m.
Riggs led the Chico defense last year and was going to be leaned on heavily again at linebacker and running back.
Two freshmen will be called on to fill the voids. Creese Redman gets the nod at running back, and Derrick Creeks steps into Anderle’s spot at receiver.
“We have a young team anyway,” Carter said. “Like I tell the kids – these things happen every day. We just have to keep moving forward.”
Jericoe McGuire has won the quarterback job. He has looked great in the scrimmages and will get his first regular season start this Saturday against Frost.
“He’s getting better every day,” Carter said. “His arm keeps getting stronger.”
McGuire gets his first game action against Frost, who defeated the Dragons 42-19 a year ago, running for over 400 yards.
“They return a lot of starters,” Carter said. “It should be a great matchup. We’ll have to control the line of scrimmage and stop the run.”
If they can hold Frost’s running game in check, they have a chance at an early-season win.
“I would like one for their self-esteem and confidence,” Carter said. “It’s not a must-win but we do match up well.”
CHICO (0-0) VS. FROST (0-0)
Saturday 7:30 p.m.
at Bedford’s Pennington Field
Chico: Harris Rating 171
Notable: The Dragons lost senior leader Darrion Riggs to a season-ending injury in the season’s first scrimmage.
Frost: Harris Rating 186
Notable: Frost exploded for 12 wins last season and returns an experienced offensive line.
Harris line: Frost by 15