June 3, 2014

Kecoughtan dominates Best of the 757

More than 60 players participated in the Best of the 757 Football Showcase over the weekend at Norfolk Academy. While there were several individual standouts among the players named to the All-Camp team, no single school at the event had a more impressive depth of talent that the Kecoughtan Warriors, a program that may be on the rise and making waves this fall.

Gearing up for year three at the helm, Coach Alonzo Coley at Kecoughtan has plenty to be excited about with a large crop of returnees, several of which stood out at the Best of the 757.

From the very start of the event, Jacione Fugate was a 'buzz' name with his electric speed that earned him the Fastest Man Award. A transfer to the Warriors before last season from Booker T. Washington, Fugate was chosen Second Team All-Conference running back during his sophomore year and should only build on that next season. In addition to his great closing speed, he's got a decent frame, better than average ball skills and the type of instincts you need to be an impact player.

Fugate impressed at cornerback with his aggressive mentality and it wouldn't surprise us to see him play that position in college. Not to mention, he's got the type of length, speed and coverage skills that recruiters covet. What would surprise us is if he doesn't have at least a couple of those long touchdowns of the 40+ yard variety next season.

Fugate reminded our staff of Lake Taylor'sNhyre Quinerly, a multi-offer prospect from the rising senior class, andone of the coaches used the word 'swagger' in describing Fugate as well.

Tight end Tyler Crist consistently found creases in the defense. The sure-handed Crist made it look routine getting open and snagging passes. Last year, he was known primarily as the punter, but playing in an offense that showed the ability to sling it round with success in 2013 (they threw for 398 yards in a close loss to 4A State Semifinalist Heritage), he's bound to make his presence known/felt.

Physically, few stood out more than Nick Carrera, who began his Kecoughtan career as a quarterback and has transformed into a fine weapon hauling in passes instead of delivering them. Carrera had 27 catches for 365 yards and three touchdowns a season ago at tight end. When you combine that production on the field and in the classroom, where he maintains a 3.0 GPA, it is somewhat surprising that he has yet to pull in an offer, though that could change soon.

At receiver, Carrera may lack the elite speed for the next level, but what he does possesses is an understanding of the passing game, the necessary athleticism for the position, solid awareness and mixes in some savvy. Of the receivers that participated, he stood out as the most polished.

Another player to keep an eye on is Elijah White, a Second Team All-Monitor Merrimac Conference selection a season ago that also gets it done defensively. On this day, he covered the boundary nicely and his best projection may be at the free safety spot. Like Fugate, he's got a competitive edge to him.

Having won between four and six games for each of their last five seasons, the Warriors program has proven to be a stable outfit, yet they've not quite made the leap into being an upper division group. The fall of 2014 could prove to be the turning point for the school if these players (and more) continue to develop.


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