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FHS California 7-on-7 stay ends up a winner despite 0-6 record

Going winless in California didn’t dampen enthusiasm for a unique football experience.

“We just thought it was a tremendous trip,” Farragut High School football head coach Eddie Courtney said about the adidas National Passing League 7-on-7 tournament July 18-19 in Carson, Calif. (Los Angeles metropolitan area) in which his team participated. “Adidas did it up right, it was a first-class tournament for a national seven-on-seven tournament.”

Playing six games with his 21-man team and four assistants at the “brand new” Home Depot Center complex, “We didn’t win, and Oak Ridge won once, so that kind of told you about the talent level from the other 10 teams that were there,” Courtney said. “Our kids played hard and tried, it’s just such a speed game at that level with these other schools.

“We were in every game, but in a 40-minute game it seems whoever has the ball last or who ends up making a play at the end ends up winning the game.”

Going against a field that included two California teams, three from Florida, two Texas schools, one each from Illinois and Indiana, plus another Midwestern school, “Our kids got a lot out of it going against those caliber of teams,” the coach said. “Our kids held their own, I’m proud of ’em because they gave great effort and did what we asked them to do coaching-wise.”

Senior wide receiver Zach Allen said it was his first trip to California. “It was pretty exciting,” Allen said. “We didn’t see much of L-A or anything, but the Home Depot Center is really nice.”

As for the competition, “It was some of the best athletes in the country,” Allen said. “It was a great experience.”

Brady Evans, a junior wide receiver, said Los Angeles “is a lot more crowded than it is here. … There’s not much open space anywhere. We drove through Long Beach on our way home from the airport. That was pretty cool.”

Competition-wise, “The people are so much faster than we’re used to,” Evans said. “Really good teams.”


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