Sports and Outdoors


 Lake Info

Normal Lake Level is 322.00 feet above Mean Sea Level.
Current level for Cedar Creek Lake is: 320.79 Water Temperature:
86  degrees - top
degrees - bottom






Panthers open at Kaufman
Monitor Staff Reports
MABANK–The hosting Mabank Panthers “answered some questions” during last Friday’s controlled scrimmage against the Canton Eagles, and will open the regular season at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 28, on the road against the Kaufman Lions.
During a half of “live” play in the scrimmage, the Eagles took a 13-10 “win” over the hosting Panthers, converting a long touchdown pass down the middle of the field, and scoring on a defensive fumble return to take a 13-3 lead with 7:27 to play in the second quarter.
The Panthers had earlier posted a middle-range field goal by Michael Blackburn and followed the Canton defensive score with a long drive and touchdown on a short (two-yard) slant from quarterback Jordan Featherston to senior wideout Michael Tanner with 2:51 left to play.
Panther head coach Jimmy Cantrell said the Eagle touchdown throw resulted from a blown coverage.
“You don’t expect to see that with the experience we have back there,” Cantrell said. “It was on fourth-and-short, and they bit on the run (fake). Of course, it’s better to happen now than against Kaufman.”
The Panthers played pure vanilla defense against the Eagles, with no blitzes. In fact, most of the time, the Panthers used a three-man rush, dropping eight men back into coverage against the Canton spread, Cantrell said.
“We had a lot of people going both ways,” Cantrell said. “I thought the coaches did a good job with their rotations, keeping players fresh.
“I didn’t see any problems with fatigue,” he added. “Well, maybe in one kid, but he never got any rest.”
Cantrell said the Panther offensive line did a good job picking up Canton blitzes.
“That’s pretty good protection when people are bringing that kind of heat,” Cantrell said.
The Panthers should have everybody back and healthy for Friday’s season opener, which is a key, because the Lions are the North Texas area’s third-ranked team, according to the Dallas Morning News.
“It should be a good test for us,” Cantrell said.
Fans probably shouldn’t expect anything like last year’s contest, when the Panthers scored 28 points in the fourth quarter to take a 42-39 victory in a game that lasted until nearly midnight, thanks to a lightning delay.
The Lions have just four offensive and two defensive starters returning from last year’s 10-4 Division II semifinalist squad.
All four of those returning offensive starters are skill players, including quarterback Austin McDaniel and running back Kailian Hughey.
“(Kaufman’s) defense flies to the football, and they’re good tacklers,” Cantrell said. “Their offensive line comes off the ball low and hard.
“It’s going to be a blood-letting, smash-mouth football game, but it always is when we play,” he added.
The Panther defense will need to force at least four or five three-and-outs on the Lions’ part, which will be difficult, Cantrell said.
“They’ve got a stable of running backs, all of whom are pretty good,” he added.
“I was pretty impressed with our running game (against Canton). Our backs were making four and five yards a try,” Cantrell added. “We’ll need to utilize our short passing game more, and try to control the ball.”

Bulldogs to face Grace Saturday
Monitor Staff Reports
EUSTACE–The Eustace Bulldogs looked much better in their second controlled scrimmage of the year last Thursday night.
At 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 29, the Bulldogs will open their season on the road, traveling to Tyler’s All Saints Christian School to face the Grace Community Cougars.
Last year, the Cougars took a 36-28 win over the Bulldogs in an offensive shoot-out, scoring a clinching touchdown late in the contest to break open a tight 30-28 game during the inaugural weekend for All Saints’ new football stadium.
Eustace head coach Doug Wendel said the Bulldogs posted a much stronger performance last week against the Elkhart Elks than in their first controlled scrimmage against hosting Venus Aug. 15.
“Our performance was much better on both the offensive and defensive line,” he said. “I thought, overall, it was a very beneficial scrimmage.”
Instead of one “live” quarter, the teams played a timed half, “which allowed us to do a lot of time management that you don’t usually get to do in a scrimmage,” Wendel said.
The Bulldogs won the battle physically, as the first-team defense held the Elks scoreless, while a touchdown given up by the second-team defense was called back on a holding penalty.
“(Senior quarterback) Chris Compton played well, in that he ran the offense and made excellent reads,” Wendel said. “I thought he had good control of the huddle. Jacob Petillo did an excellent job at fullback for us.”
During the half of live play, Bulldog Joseph Bradburn scored on a 75-yard run off a toss to the left, which indicated the Bulldogs will be more balanced, left and right, than in the past.
However, the Cougars will provide a different look than the Bulldogs have seen so far, as they run a “very good” spread offense, Wendel said.
“They’re very balanced, about 50/50 (run/pass), and they execute well,” he said. “Their quarterback is very good, and a dual threat, and both running backs are solid.”
Defensively, the Cougars are probably a little better, technique-wise, than last year, particularly at the defensive end spot, Wendel said.
“I think they’re still searching for an overall scheme, but their defensive ends are going to cause some problems for us,” he noted.
Recalling last year’s shoot-out, Wendel said, “I expect they will score some points.”
What the Bulldog defense has to do is slow down the Cougars’ running game, not giving up 25-yard runs.
“We’re going to focus on stopping the run,” Wendel said. “Offensively, I feel we’re going to have to score.
“The best thing for us would be mounting long offensive drives,” he added.
“I fully expect it to be like last year,” Wendel said. “The kicking game will be critical, and protecting the ball will be critical.”
Last year, the Cougars never attempted a point-after kick, but ran or passed for two points, and Wendel noted, “it may come down to a PAT.”
“I don’t think one team will dominate, and I don’t think either offense will be shut down completely,” he said. “We haven’t scrimmaged a spread team, so that will be different for us.
“We’ll see a lot of spread (during district play), but this will be the first time this year to see it,” he added.
Directions to All Saints: From Eustace, take U.S. Highway 175 to Loop 7. Follow Loop 7 around Athens to State Highway 31 east. Follow SH 31 through Brownsboro and Chandler to Tyler, and turn right (south) on Loop 323. All Saints main entrance will be on the right, just past the Sam’s Club warehouse.

Kemp battles Bears at Van
Monitor Staff Reports
KEMP–A slow start changed when the Kemp Yellowjackets got into the “live” portion of their second controlled scrimmage against the Edgewood Bulldogs last week.
Moving into their new high school Monday, the ’Jackets will open the 2009 football season at 7:30 p.m. Friday in a brand-new stadium, when they face the Brownsboro Bears at Van’s sparkling Memorial Stadium complex.
At home against Edgewood, the ’Jackets seemed sluggish early on, as they did in the opening scrimmage against Malakoff Aug. 15, head coach Greg Anderson noted.
“When we started playing the full half, we kind of flipped a switch, and went up and down the field, almost scoring at will,” Anderson said.
With no scores to show for trips inside the Edgewood 20 with both the first and second teams, the ’Jackets scored on three of their four possessions during the “live” half.
“The biggest improvement was in the offensive line,” Anderson said. “They looked like a different group when we played the half.
“It’s really pleasing, from a coach’s standpoint, that they played that well early. Our non-district schedule is really brutal,” he added.
“I know that we’re ahead of where we have been the last two season,” Anderson said. “We’re installing a lot more a lot quicker this year because they (the players) are experienced.”
Brownsboro is a pre-season pick as a playoff team in rugged District 20-3A behind favorite Athens and Crockett.
The Bears have been known primarily as a running team, but in their two scrimmages, they’ve tried to throw the ball, Anderson said.
“Certainly, they have the skill kids to get the ball to, run or pass,” Anderson said.
Brownsboro has seven offensive and five defensive starters returning from last year’s 6-5 playoff team, including two-way threat Cameron Warren (an 1,100-yard rusher and dangerous receiver) and two quarterbacks, Zach Bailey and Ryan Owens, who combined for more than 3,000 yards and 30 touchdowns last year.
“Last year (in Kemp), it was nip-and-tuck in the first half, but we made some mistakes and allowed it to get away in the second half,” Anderson said.
Brownsboro exploded for 32 points in the second half behind a punishing running attack, led by Warner (nine carries, 125 yards) and Bailey (six carries, 77 yards), taking advantage of six Kemp turnovers.
“I think both teams are excited to go over there and be a part of the grand opening of a nice new stadium,” Anderson said.
“We want to go in and be fundamentally sound – we don’t want to turn the ball over, and we don’t want to make mistakes in the kicking game,” he added.
Speaking of the kicking game, senior Michael Scott (a returning starter in the offensive line and at linebacker) is stepping in to the spot vacated when steady Bryan Fivecoat graduated, and will handle kickoffs, field goals/PATs and punts.
“He’s two of three on PATs so far,” Anderson said. “All he needs is experience with the lights on. Mike’s got a strong leg, and is working on his confidence.”
A key for the ’Jackets will be sure tackling on defense, Anderson noted.
“We want to be good tacklers, because they have some exceptional skill kids,” he said.
Although the Brownsboro game is the season opener, it’s not a district contest, and doesn’t mean anything, really, in accomplishing the Yellowjackets’ goal of getting back to the playoffs, Anderson said.
“We just want to have a chance to win late in the game against a quality opponent,” he added.

Upcoming games

GBC co-ed softball

Sept. 1
7 p.m.
Impossibles vs Xtreme-Tanksley
8:05 p.m.
Longhorns vs Replacements
9:10 p.m.
Dictators vs Rebels

Sept. 8
7 p.m.
Replacements vs Dictators
8:05 p.m.
Impossibles vs Longhorns
9:10 p.m.
Xtreme-Tanksley vs Rebels
(end season)


Aug. 27-29
MHS @ Tyler tourn.
KHS @ Wills Point tourn.
EHS @ Tyler tourn.

Sept. 1
MHS vs John Tyler & Van

Sept. 3-5
KHS @ Brownsboro tourn.

Sept. 4
MHS vs Tyler Lee
EHS vs Edgewood

Sept. 8
KHS vs Cross Roads

Sept. 11
MHS @ Lancaster*
EHS @ Edgewood

Sept. 12
KHS @ Grand Saline tourn.
(*district contest)

Aug. 28
MHS @ Kaufman
KHS vs Brownsboro
(@ Van)

Aug. 29
EHS vs Grace Community
(@ Tyler All Saints)

Sept. 4
MHS vs Athens
KHS @ Parish Episcopal
EHS vs Dallas Life Oak

Sept. 11
EHS @ Edgewood

Sept. 18
MHS vs Van (HC)
KHS @ Rains
EHS @ Quitman


Cross country

Aug. 29
KHS @ Greenhill Relays
(Norbuck Park, Dallas)
EHS @ Spring Hill Inv.

Sept. 5
MHS @ Kaufman Run
KHS @ Kaufman Run
EHS @ Kaufman Run

Sept. 12
MHS @ North Mesquite
KHS @ Malakoff Inv.
EHS @ Malakoff Inv.

Sept. 19
MHS @ Palestine
KHS @ Lumberjack Inv.
(Stephen F. Austin)
EHS @ Pine Tree PJ


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