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Newton Rams football shows flashes of dominance in scrimmage
Returning as the Rams’ leading receiver from a year ago is Marcus Calwise (3). - photo by Phillip B. Hubbard

COVINGTON, Ga. — It won’t be long before the Newton Rams football season kicks off. 

The Rams will host Hapeville Charter on Thursday, Aug. 18 at Sharp Stadium. 

In preparation for the regular season, Newton participated in a preseason scrimmage against Columbia High School on Aug. 5. And, though the Rams lost 13-7, the scrimmage served as a good gauge for head coach Camiel Grant Jr. to assess where his team stands. 

“I feel real good about the framework of what we saw here tonight,” Grant said. “I believe we can coach through those mistakes and we will be better in those areas.” 

The biggest takeaway for Grant was the lack of communication on the defensive side of the ball. As a result, the Rams’ defense surrendered huge gains all night, one of which ended with Columbia scoring on a 97-yard touchdown run. 

Then, on offense, Grant pointed to the wide receiver corps having numerous drops resulting in three-and-outs and ending drives. 

Grant plans to use Friday’s scrimmage as a tool to help the players hone in on fixing their miscues. 

“Now, the players have on tape where they can see it,” Grant said. “So, when we’re coaching them they’ll see exactly what we’re talking about.” 

However, the Rams demonstrated positive things, too. 

On offense, Grant highlighted Newton’s running game as a consistent contribution. Then, he had quite the admiration for junior wideout Marcus Calwise. 

“I thought Marcus Calwise looks like he might be in midseason form,” Grant said. 

Calwise caught the Rams’ lone touchdown of the scrimmage. 

Defensively, Grant highlighted a couple of players who showed huge progress in their development. 

“Damion Heggs I thought he had a good game on the inside,” Grant said. “Justin Benton, it’s good to have him back, and you can see why we’re glad to have him back.” 

With all things considered based on Friday’s scrimmage, Grant believes his team is in a good spot heading into regular season action shortly. 

Grant just wants to see the team come together and play as one. 

“You see the pieces. For us, even throughout the mistakes, it’s a good chance for us to evaluate,” Grant said. “So now, when we go back and start making moves on the depth chart and those type of things, we’ve got solid gane film to base it on.”

While Newton’s regular season begins Aug. 18, the Rams’ schedule really ramps up with region action beginning on Sept. 30. Newton will host Grayson at home then, two weeks later following a bye week, will host Brookwood. The Rams will hit the road to Parkview and South Gwinnett in subsequent weeks. Newton’s regular season concludes at home versus Archer.