VALLEY CENTER — The Newton High School football team took one step closer to the start the of the season Saturday morning, scrimmaging both Valley Center and McPherson in Valley Center.

The Railers got to run 18 offensive plays against each of the other two squads and in turn ran 18 defensive plays against the other two teams.

One team would send out its defense, while the other two alternated offensive plays.

“It’s a good opportunity for us to get better,” Newton coach Chris Jaax said. “We did some good things to start off and then we hit a lull in intensity. We had a good response when we challenged them about their intensity. We have to be more physical. We have to run the ball better.”

Newton had the smaller team in terms of number of players.

“We just have to be ready for it,” Jaax said. “We’re going to have some kids who will have to play both ways. We’re going to have to be in good shape.”

Newton opens the season at 7 p.m. Friday against Buhler.

“We’re going to have to have a good week of practice,” Jaax said. “We need to be competitive in practice. We have to make sure we’re challenging each other.”