Scrimmage Play Six: Kent Henry

Scrimmage Play Six: Kent Henry

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Defining Kent Henry’s style can be difficult, but of course there’s only one year to judge that on. There’s a term to describe a enigma that gets the job done -- gamer.

By all means last year, Henry was a gamer. As the rising junior jumps into his junior year under first year head coach Ed Redmond, Henry will get a chance to further define his quarterbacking skills. He’s quick and has an ability to drive defenses crazy by scrambling. This season he’s looking to stay true to his nature but add to it in a more traditional way.

As a sophomore Henry led Western to its third straight Region II showing.

“Passing on the run and getting out of the pocket is where I’m at my best,” Henry said. “But I do have to learn how be a little more calm and not rush myself. So I’m working on pocket presence and getting the ball around.”

Who could blame him for being on the run, there were few teams able to deal with it in the Jefferson District. Even Monticello and Powhatan had headaches trying to contain him. But the Warriors seem to always come loaded with a gifted wide receiver corps given the schools strong lacrosse, soccer and track and field background. So making the most of that will be key as the Warriors turn the page from former head coach Ed Pierce who led the team to three straight Region II showings to the new man at the helm in Redmond.

“It only took me a couple of hours to get it,” Henry said of the offense Redmond is installing. “It’s basically the same scheme, similar plays with some new terminology. It’s a little twist here and there but we’re all taking it in stride and figuring it out.”

Henry jumped in last season unsure of where he’d windup. But after his debut performance in an overtime win that included his rush for a game winning 2-point conversion, if the job wasn’t his already, that solidified it. The Warriors came from behind to make the post season last year with the crucial moment coming on the road against Louisa County where Henry also shined, both passing and running. Now that he knows what is expected of this team, a group that was supposed to rebuild last year, he’s taking a different approach to this year’s training camp.

“Last year was a heated quarterback battle and I didn’t know I’d start until three days before the first game,” Henry said. “So it’s nice to have the job but I have to prepare myself differently now.”

His familiarity with a receiving corps that returns the bulk of its talent makes life easier. And spending time with that unit over the summer has only solidified his confidence as this young group one year ago takes the next step forward.

“We’ve had six receivers working out there this summer and we know each other well, we’re comfortable,” Henry said. “We went to a (7-on-7 tournament) and that helped us bond well too. So we should be good and we’ll keep working on that.”

It was a senior class in 2009 that led Western to a share of the Jefferson District title and now it’s a group led by Henry looking to help the Warriors make the jump from one of the teams in the top half of the district to simply one of the best. But based on a one year sample, ask Louisa or Albemarle or even Monticello which just narrowly defeated this team in the Region II playoffs – when the game is on the line, is there a quarterback that is better at finding a way to help his team win? If all goes to plan, it won’t come down to drama for Western. Henry and what should be a potent offense just might play ahead instead.



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