Loudoun County’s quarterback is no longer confined to the pocket. Where prolific passer Jake Lokey would step up in the face of the rush, his replacement is running around it.
Only one ball hit the ground as he went 12 for 13 with 293 yards and four touchdowns. He also ran for 86 yards and a score.
“I feel like I’m a bigger running threat than passing threat, but I just need to trust my arm more,” Crews-Naylor said.
The Raiders’ new junior quarterback will naturally be compared to Lokey — who threw for more than 5,300 yards and 57 touchdowns in three seasons as a starter — but Crews-Naylor faces a more similar measuring stick Thursday against No. 6 Briar Woods.
North Carolina recruit Trace McSorley is one of the top dual-threat quarterbacks in the area. In two games, he has three touchdowns apiece through the air and on the ground.
The state champion Falcons present Crews-Naylor’s biggest threat in his third start. Briar Woods eliminated Loudoun County from the Virginia AA Region II playoffs in each of the past two years.
“I’ve been waiting to start this game for two years now,” Crews-Naylor said.
Loudoun County graduated 18 starters last year. Coach Todd Hill said the new seniors have stepped up without a dropoff in leadership.
Crews-Naylor said his confidence is growing, which will be crucial when Briar Woods makes plays.
“The thing we’ve tried to impress upon him, is just go play football,” Hill said. “If something bad happens, let it go.”
Cordani topped 1,000 rushing yards last season, but was held to 88 yards in last year’s 20-14 loss to the Huskies.
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