- Alma School District
Bush, Alma cap spring practice with 'great night for Airedale football'-05/21/2021
By Kevin Taylor
The threat of rain and an otherwise gloomy spring Thursday did little to dampen the spirits of Alma's football team.
"It's nice coming out here and being competitive," senior Conner Stacy said following the Airedales' brisk spring game. "Everybody wants to win, but at the end of the day we're all on the same team."
Coach Rusty Bush and the Airedales now shift their attention to summer team camps, hot afternoons in the sun, and keeping an agenda that didn't exist in the uncertainty of COVID-19 restrictions.
"It's the first real football coming out of COVID," Bush said. "We've got some good things happening right now. We're wrapping this good spring practice up. It was a great night for Airedale football."
Bush got a first-hand look at quarterbacks Hunter McAlister, Joe Trusty, Jackson Daily, and Derek Hatcher - all of whom had their moments.
"I thought the quarterbacks did some really good things," Bush said. "Really, it was their first pressure situation with people in the bleachers and the lights being on. There are some things we'll need to clean up, which is one of the reasons you have spring football practice."
With Stacy transitioning to a full-time receiver, Bush may have found another one in Hatcher.
Stacy led the team with 27 receptions for 352 yards and three touchdowns in 2020. Holdovers BriLee White, Kevin Mills, and Brady Noyes combined for six receptions last season, with White snagging four for 25 yards and a TD.
"Derek is always consistent," Bush said. "I call him my baseball swag guy. He never gets too high, he never gets too low. He'll play some quarterback and receiver for us."
McAlister, who led the Airedales with 668 yards passing and six touchdowns, looked sharp Thursday. The same was true of move-in Joe Trusty.
"It felt good," he said. "It feels like the season's about to start and we're getting ready to play. I love it so far; it's a lot of fun."
"We didn't get to have a spring game last year, so it's nice to get out here before summer and get a better idea of who we're going to be," Stacy said. "We're trying to find those kids who are going to step up."