The Port St. Joe Jr./Sr. High School football team closed out a successful spring campaign by out-scoring host Holmes County 30-28 in a jamboree last Friday.

The Port St. Joe Jr./Sr. High School football team closed out a successful spring campaign by out-scoring host Holmes County 30-28 in a jamboree last Friday.

The Tiger Sharks, who worked on installing a new offense this spring, played starters in the second and third quarters after starting the first and fourth periods with the reserves on the field.

“It was good way to end spring,” said Port St. Joe coach John Palmer. “I liked the format because it allowed everybody to get a chance to play.

“We think we made a lot of improvement in the areas we felt we needed to.”

Those areas included building depth and experience along the offensive line, where the Tiger Sharks have good size, and finding linebackers on defense.

By far the biggest area of focus, however, was a new offense, a no-huddle shotgun formation attack designed to capitalize on what should be the Port St. Joe strength.

“We want to take advantage of the number of skilled position players we have,” Palmer said. “We wanted to get to a no-huddle, up-tempo and I was pleased with where we are.”

With Ethan Sander graduating and Josh Butts rehabbing an injury, the quarterback play fell on the shoulders of Jasmin Thomas and Kelvin Griffin.

Thomas tossed a pair of touchdown passes to Cameron Harmon against Holmes County and Griffin connected with J’trel Riley on a third touchdown pass.

Peyton Edwards, who qualified for the state Class 1A track and field championships in the 100 meters, had a long run for a touchdown.

“With his work in spring sports, particularly track, Peyton is running with a lot more confidence.” Palmer said.

“Considering he threw three touchdowns in our Purple-and-Gold scrimmage and two against Holmes County, Jasmin also played with a lot of confidence and did a very good job.”

Another upside coming out of the Holmes County contest was the spreading of the ball; nine different players, running backs or wide receivers, touched the ball.

The bulk of the rushing was shouldered by Jaden Grantland and Russell Russ.

On the other side of the ball, two things stood out; the play of Grantland, Griffin and Kendre Gant as the Tiger Sharks look to bolster their linebacking corps and the reality that Port St. Joe had just two players going both ways against Holmes County.

“Defensively we did a good job of running to the ball against Holmes County,” Palmer said. “And we did a good job of playing aggressively.

“All their big plays came on counters or traps, where they took advantage of our aggressiveness and we were not as disciplined as we needed to be at the point of attack.”

In addition to a new offensive scheme, Palmer also used the spring to reconstruct his coaching staff.

Defensive coordinator Chuck Gannon stepped away after the 2016 season and is not expected back and offensive coordinator Josh Dailey has moved into administration.

That left Palmer calling the plays on offense and defense during the spring.

The Holmes County jamboree hardly ends football for the Port St. Joe squad.

The players will be on hand next Saturday to help run a fundraising golf scramble and summer conditioning begins June 5.

The Tiger Sharks will participate in two camps, a 7-on-7 passing camp at Florida State University June 17 and a later Fellowship of Christian Athletes full-team camp.

“I think the big thing from the spring was the kids’ attitudes,” Palmer said. “Their attitudes were so positive all spring. The body language, there was real bonding as a team.

“There are areas we need to work on, but we got accomplished this spring what we wanted to accomplish.”