The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

High School Sports

August 23, 2012

River Kings open season tonight

Returning QB could carry Kings far

CLINTON — With quarterback Will Carr heading the offense for a second season, Clinton has high expectations for this year, starting with tonight’s opener against Davenport North.

“We’re definitely excited,” Carr said. “There’s an energy that we haven’t had for a couple years, and it’s nice to see.”

Last season, the River Kings lost their first three games and went 3-7 overall with a first-round postseason loss.

Clinton is hoping to get off to a better start this year as it kicks off the season at 7 p.m. in the first of four games it plays this fall at Brady Street Stadium in Davenport. North went 1-8 last year, and Clinton topped the Wildcats 35-21 in Week 5 of 2011 during Mississippi Athletic Conference play.

Get the complete River Kings football schedule.

“We know we can win, that’s for sure,” Carr said. “We can’t underestimate a team like North. Last year, we didn’t destroy. This year, we expect to win. We always expect to win. We’ve got to show up and do what we can do to come out on top and start the season off well.”

The 6-foot, 2-inch senior said he thought a season-opening win would set the right tone for the River Kings this season.

“Having a win at the beginning of the season is going to be a monumental change,” Carr said. “Last year, we had a really rough start, and that kind of set the tone for the whole season. Everyone was down on themselves. We were basically playing to not get beat, rather than playing to win. I think that’s the biggest difference this year. We’ll be big contenders in the MAC.”

Carr took over behind center last year in the first year of Clinton’s transition to a spread offense. Clinton coach Lee Camp said Carr kept improving as the season progressed.

“At first, there were all those nerves and everything; it’s your first year of varsity football,” Carr said. “I got a lot more comfortable, and then the passing game started to open up. I was more comfortable in the pocket and things went a lot more smoothly; it was easier.”

One of the key aspects of the River Kings’ new offense is the read play, where the quarterback has to read a defensive lineman and then choose one of two options.

“The read was a big change from sophomores,” Carr said. “There wasn’t even coverage-reading a lot. That read play (from last year) we built on a lot. We have more reads. It was a good learning experience. We had a whole year to get comfortable with the read, and that opens up what we can do this year.”

More is expected this season from Carr and the Clinton offense in Year 2 of the new offense after the River Kings finished seventh in scoring and eighth in total yardage last year.

“I want to make more confident decisions,” Carr said. “You can’t be hesitant. That’s where you get in trouble, when you second-guess yourself. I need to make a decision and stick with it.”

The offense seems to be ready, but Carr said the players won’t know for sure until they face a real defense. Starting against North’s defense isn’t bad for the River Kings. Last year, North allowed 30 or more points in all eight of its losses and 40 or more points in six games, including allowing 61 points twice.

“There’s nothing like the game experience; you can’t mimic it,” Carr said. “But we have some really good scout teams this year. Everyone is pushing pretty hard at practice, so that helps.”

Clinton has 10 returning starters, and they’ve shared the leadership role. Carr said he’s taken a larger role in that area than he did last year.

“I stepped up this year a little bit more,” he said. “But I’m not really a vocal leader, I try to lead with action. I’m not the only leader on the team by any means. There’s a lot of guys on the team who have stepped up and shown leadership. I think that will be a big part of our success, having a lot of good leaders.”

The receiver Carr connected with the most last season returns in 5-9 senior Cody Collender. The pair connected 19 times for 308 yards and four touchdowns.

“Cody is a good athlete,” Carr said. “As a quarterback, it’s all about getting the ball to your playmakers. Outside of football, Cody and I have always been friends, so there’s a connection there. We have a good feel for each other timing-wise.”

1
Text Only
High School Sports
  • Evers: For love of the green CLINTON - Conner Evers calls The Oaks Golf Course his home. There isn't a day where Evers won't visit the golf course on the city's west side. "I spend a lot of time here," Evers said with a laugh. "This is my second home. I love golf, and there's no

    April 24, 2014

  • 4-24-14 1B-photo, Ladehoff signs CCC right for Ladehoff DEWITT - Joe Shovlain says Clinton Community College has a great selling point: opportunity. For Central DeWitt senior Ellie Ladehoff, there was another key factor in her decision to attend the school. Ladehoff, who joined 11 of her classmates on sta

    April 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • 4-24-14 1B-Photo, Drake story Youngsters take on oval

    CLINTON -- One of the biggest track meets in the nation begins today, and the youngsters will kick off the event at Drake University in Des Moines. The high school portion of the Drake Relays begins at 3 p.m. with the field events, and Clinton senior

    April 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • Schreiber wins dual; Coppess 2nd at tri BETTENDORF -- To be the best, you have to beat the best. Brittany Coppess came close to doing that Tuesday at Hidden Hills Golf Course in a triangular meet between North Scott, Clinton and Pleasant Valley. Coppess finished with a nine-hole 42, 5 over

    April 23, 2014

  • 4-23-14 1B-photo, ethan jones Jones has eyes set on prize FULTON, Ill. -- Ethan Jones has all the confidence that he can become the Three Rivers Conference Player of the Year in baseball. "I just need to work hard, show up everyday and just play the best that I can every game so I can help my team win," Jo

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lancers blank Queens, Kings CLINTON -- Chloe Gottschalk scored a hat trick to lead North Scott past Clinton 7-0 in girls soccer Tuesday night. Gina Matthys added a pair of goals, while Lindsay Gallens and Olivia Schmidt scored once apiece. Abby Nass played all 80 minutes in goa

    April 23, 2014

  • 4-23-14 1B or 3B-Photo, Gateway B race Kings kick off big week at Gateway CLINTON -- It's not quite the state meet in terms of importance, but this week is right up there for the Clinton boys track and field team. Seniors Deshond Robinson and Nathan Harden were in top form Tuesday as they tuned up for the Drake Relays by h

    April 23, 2014 3 Photos

  • Welcome-back win CLINTON -- Scoring in every event, the Camanche boys track and field team presented coach Mark Metzger with a terrific "welcome back" gift Tuesday evening. The Indians piled up 171 points to win the Class B portion of the 94th annual Gateway Classic

    April 23, 2014

  • 4-22-14 2B-Photo, Fulton baseball Morrison wins twinbill at Fulton FULTON, Ill. -- As Fulton baseball coach Kyle Miller put it after losing both games to Morrison on Monday, the losses were tough to swallow, but all the Steamers could do afterward was tip their hats toward the Mustangs. Morrison won 1-0, then 11-4

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Irish's Evers second CLINTON -- Conner Evers pulled out his go-to motivation when struggling on the golf course. Not anything in his bag particularly, but a small booklet of pick-me-up quotes. He picked the right one, because Evers, a junior for Prince of Peace, finished

    April 22, 2014

Sports Updates
Facebook