Holy Trinity football hopes to build on historic season


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Holy Trinity wide receiver James BlackStrain, center, has multiple scholarship offers. The Tigers open spring practice April 22

CARL KOTALA

When the Holy Trinity Tigers hit the field for the first day of spring practice this month, they will try to build on the best season in program history.

“The mission is to capitalize off of last season,” Holy Trinity coach Nate Hooks Jr. said. “Each team is different. One year has nothing to do with the next. However, you still want to try to use the success of one season to catapult you to bigger and better things.

“You don’t want to go backwards.”

Spring practice begins April 22 and will conclude with a spring game next month. At press time, Hooks said he still was trying to finalize the date and spring game opponent for the Tigers.

Holy Trinity won the first playoff game in school history last season, beating Cardinal Newman 34-30 in the Class 3A regional quarterfinals. Three big-name players will graduate.

Defensive end Seth Coleman was a top-300 recruit who signed with Illinois. Linebacker Sully Altman was named all-state and announced on his Twitter account in late February that he had committed to West Florida. Then there’s quarterback Dru Nickson, who signed to play basketball at Embry-Riddle University, but was selected as honorable mention all-state by Florida High School Football.

“A lot of production has to be replaced, but it has to be viewed as an opportunity for other guys,” Hooks said.

The Tigers will certainly have some talent coming back in running back Larry Hill and wide receiver James BlackStrain, who have each received multiple Division I scholarship offers.

Benji Nicks and Rico Frazier are ready to step in at the defensive end spots. Trey Palmer, who has played cornerback and linebacker, has an offer from Cornell. Holy Trinity is also expecting to get a big contribution at running back from transfer Kevin Chandler.

Of course, the big excitement around the Holy Trinity program came when Hooks announced on Twitter that the school will build a new $5.5 million facility and turf field. Hooks said the plan is to have the new facility ready by the time the next school year starts.

“We’ll have hands down the best facility in the county,” he said. “It won’t even be close.”

In the meantime, the Tigers are on a mission to keep getting better.

“That’s what spring is for, finding out who are going to be your ballers in the fall,” Hooks said.