Go-to-guy. Game changer. Workhorse. All-around superstar.
Charles Lemay of the Vernon (VSS) Panthers is all of the above and more on the football field.
Lemay will attract plenty of attention from the Fulton Maroons in the Friday Night Lights high school special (6 p.m.) at Greater Vernon Athletics Park. The Panthers lead the Interior Conference at 3-0 with Fulton second at 2-1.
“Lemay is an excellent high school football player.,” said Fulton head coach Mike Scheller. “The kid will probably be named Interior Conference player of the year when the Interior Coaches have their all-star meetings this weekend. Defensively, he is solid against the run and in coverage. They utilize him a number of ways defensively, and he really helps their defence. Offensively, he is special. He has very good vision running the ball and has the type of big-play ability you want in your tailback.”
Lemay carried the ball 15 times for 245 yards, five of which went for 20-plus yards, as the Cats ambushed the Westsyde Blue Wave 42-0 last Friday. Lemay counted four rushing touchdowns, his longest a 55-yard romp. He gets space to move thanks to linebackers Liam Alder, Mark Delasen, Brady Szeman, Jackson Thomas and Nathan Vasconcelos
Scheller says VSS is very deserving of their No 1 senior varsity AA ranking.
“Those kids have played together a long time, and it shows in their timing and precision. Coach (Sean) Smith and his staff have done an excellent job of building that program and coaching their players. They are No. 1 for a reason. The thing that sticks out when you watch them is their team speed. They have a lot of fast dudes and they get them the ball in a variety of ways. Defensively, they are aggressive and they stick their tackles. A very solid group. Our coaching staff is proud of our kids this year. They are fighters and are gritty. They will play hard on Friday night. “
Smith is hardly banking the two points before opening kick-off.
“Since we see each other every year, Fulton is well aware of what we do both offensively and defensively and always have a good game-plan for us,” said Smith. “Coach Scheller always seems to have a trick play or two up his sleeve when we meet, so I’d expect more of the same and we have to be prepared for that in special teams and when we are on defence. On offence, they do a good job of misdirection, running reverses and boots in the passing game. We have to make sure we are disciplined on the backside of our defence to avoid getting caught on those types of plays.”
Fulton is led by QB Evan Trottier, receivers Nate Foster and Ethan Schiman and running backs Quin Williamson and Dayton Ingenhaag.
The Panthers can beat you with the running or passing game, while their defence is also dynamic, giving up just one touchdown in the last four games.
The Panthers urge fans to bring non-perishables for the food bank. The Vernon Atom Magnums are playing a mini-game at halftime.