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Freeport teams up with the FCA to host 7 on 7 competition

Published: Jul. 22, 2021 at 9:56 PM CDT
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) -Some area high school football squads made their way to Freeport for a little 7-on-7 action hosted by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes Thursday.

Chipley, Bozeman, Arnold, Walton, Port St. Joe, and the host team. heading out for three games of pool-play in the morning. Then a double elimination tournament in the afternoon. This will be the last 7-on-7 camp for most teams as they gear up for the fall. This a great setting for the event as they took advantage of all the fields at Freeport High School for the event. Hosting this kind of thing not easy, and taking quite a bit of work to set up, coach Shaun Arntz and his guys happy to do it though.

“Yeah, it’s awesome to host.” said coach Arntz. “A lot of work goes in it, and a lot of people have really worked hard, our coaches, the people from the FCA have worked hard. Our kids have worked hard to get the fields ready and everything prepared, so it’s great to be able to host these guys, and it’s one of those things where you just look for the day that they’re able to return the favor as well. We all just pay it forward in that regard.”

Among the participants, Chipley which is among the area teams under the guidance of a new head coach, Marcus Buchanan. We spoke to him about the work his guys have been putting in this summer. He’s more than pleased with that he says, and also impressed with the number of kids showing out on the Chipley practice field in recent weeks.

“It’s been tremendous. We’ve had 60 to 70 kids coming out.” coach Buchanan told us. “We’ve had to order 20 new helmets and we need ten more. They’re there every day, you know ready to go to work. Like I told them there’s no shortcuts to the top. You know we’ve got to log the time. You know I didn’t get where I’m at by taking the short road. The only way to do it is to work hard and be there every day. So we’ve been preaching attendance, accountability, things like that. And it’s paid off.”

Arnold head coach Shawn Campbell, going into his second full season running the Marlins program, also feeling good about the work his guys are putting in this summer. And that includes a little traveling as well.

“We’ve had a good summer, been busy.” coach Campbell said. “You know, lifting weights, training and conditioning. Throw in some 7 on 7. We went to team camp up in Georgia, at Cairo High School, in June. And we had a really good two day deal there. I felt we grew as a team there a little bit. Kind of learned how to compete a little bit against some South Georgia teams. So that was good. But you know we’re plugging along. You know I think we’ve had a really good summer considering all the changes they’ve had in their lives. And all the stuff we’ve been through in the last 12 months. I’m very pleased with their effort and their accountability.”

As for the other part of the mission at Freeport Thursday, that came from the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, which helped Freeport host the event. Former FSU star receiver Kez McCorvey is the FCA Area Director. And he talked to us about the importance of helping to put on this kind of competition, which also allows for his message to be deliveed.

“And we at FCA, we get the chance to do a lot of camps in the summer time.” McCorvey told us. “We get the chance to bring coaches together, bring kids together. We get the chance to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ as well. And that’s what I love. I love to get to tell people the chance the truth. I had a great coach when I was in college, Bobby Bowden. Who did the same thing for me too as well. He introduced me to Christ and he had an impact on my life. And so the impact that these coaches right here, getting them to understand the impact is a thing that we desire to be able to communicate with them.”

These teams now setting their sights on the official opening of fall camp which comes Monday, August 2nd.

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