The Manitowoc Lincoln football team finally got to play someone other than themselves on Friday as the Ships hosted a four-team scrimmage at Ron Rubick Municipal Field.
After nearly two weeks of training-camp practices, Lincoln faced off against visiting Port Washington, West Bend West and Neenah. Ships head coach John Dixon stressed to his team the standard and reputation he wanted them to uphold, and from the get-go Lincoln came out aggressive and with something to prove.
It took only three plays for Lincoln to score in its opening matchup against West Bend West as quarterback Nick Schroeder threw a nearly 30-yard touchdown pass up the left sideline for the first fireworks of the season for the Ships.
Lincoln also had 30-yard touchdown passes on its second and fourth offensive series, while the defense showed flashes of last season’s dominance by not allowing West Bend West to record a play longer than 10 yards.
Against Port Washington, the defense forced several turnovers while allowing its first score of the day. Offensively, Lincoln’s first play was a 20-yard run, one of many that came from dual running backs Drew Dixon and Ethan Just.
In its final matchup, Neenah took advantage of a winded Lincoln defense to score on the first play from scrimmage. Shortly thereafter, the Ships allowed a touchdown pass which was negated by a clipping penalty on Neenah. The Rockets also had a pair of long touchdown runs near the end of their 20-play offensive series.
Offensively, Manitowoc took three plays to score once again, this time on a 20-yard run.
“I think (the scrimmages) went well. I think we did some very nice things. We have to develop consistency and we have to develop assignment-correct performance. We can’t make mistakes,” Dixon said. “Defensively I think we played very well early. As it went longer into the scrimmage we gave up some big plays on missed tackles and things that happen when you are fatigued and tired. Those are all correctable issues. I feel good. I think we competed with everybody.”