Sports and Outdoors


 Lake Info

Normal Lake Level is 322.00 feet above Mean Sea Level.
Current level for Cedar Creek Lake is: 320.69 Water Temperature:
85  degrees - top
degrees - bottom






Grace Community edges Bulldogs, 33-27
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

TYLER–A quartet of long passes in the second half offset a strong Eustace performance, as the Grace Community Cougars came from behind to nip the Bulldogs 33-27 Saturday in the season opener for both teams.
Now 0-1 on the season, the Bulldogs will play at home for the first time this season, including scrimmages, when they host the Dallas Life Oak Cliff Lions at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 4.
The fourth and last game of the fourth annual Tyler Classic at All Saints Episcopal’s Mewbourne Field matched the run-oriented option attack of the Bulldogs against the wide-open spread attack of the Cougars.
Going into the contest, the Bulldogs wanted to control the clock and stop the Cougars’ running attack, and they did both of those things – but gave up four long pass plays in the second half.
Eustace drew first blood in the contest when the Cougars fumbled on their third offensive play, with Bulldog Justin Calhoun recovering at the Community 45.
The Bulldogs covered the 45 yards to paydirt in nine plays, opening with a 17-yard keeper by senior quarterback Chris Compton.
Compton capped the march with a one-yard plunge into the end zone, but Blake Ward’s PAT kick was wide left, leaving the Eustace lead at 6-0 with 5:57 left in the first quarter.
Eustace’s defense came through again on the second Cougar possession, when Skyler Johnston intercepted a deep pass by Community junior Taylor Stanley, who alternated at quarterback with senior Grant Ingram on each series.
The Bulldogs went three-and-out on their second possession, but disaster struck on the punt snap, which dribbled weakly back to Ward.
Community defenders swarmed in and tacked Ward for a 14-yard loss, giving the Cougars a first down at the Bulldog 23.
It took just two plays for the Cougars to cash in the turnover, as Ingram found Bradley White on the right side for a 22-yard score.
Richie Price’s PAT kick gave the Cougars a 7-6 lead with 1:28 left in the opening quarter.
Bulldog fans held their breath when the ensuing Community kickoff bounced on the ground near the Eustace 30, but after officials unpiled the players, Calhoun had notched his second big recovery at the 28.
The Bulldogs then put together their second scoring drive, helped along immensely by an obvious pass interference call against Stanley, who pushed Bulldog senior Trevan Johnson aside to make a leaping interception of Compton’s second-down pass.
Instead of a turnover, the Bulldogs had new life at the Community 37, and on the next play, Compton went deep again, finding Justin Hall three steps behind the defense along the Grace sideline.
Compton’s keeper added a two-point conversion to put the Bulldogs back in front, 14-7, with 10:31 left in the second quarter.
Two big plays provided most of a 51-yard march for the Cougars – a 19-yard pass from Stanley to Scott Snyder, followed by (on fourth-and-one) a 25-yard run by Cameron Broderhausen, which set the Cougars up at the Eustace 15.
Community got no closer, however, and the Bulldogs took possession at their 15.
Following an exchange of punts, the Bulldogs started moving in the last minute of the first half.
Johnson turned a short inside shovel pass into a 22-yard gain, and Compton found Hall again for a 13-yard gain.
Bulldog Jo Jo Bradburn got free for a 15-yard run to the Community 27, but Compton’s last-second pass fell incomplete.
Eustace opened the second half with their only turnover, a fumble Cougar Wade Jones recovered at the Bulldog 43.
It took the Cougars three plays to capitalize on the gift, as Stanley found Grant Childress open on the left side for a 41-yard touchdown.
Price’s PAT kick made it a one-point game, 14-13, with 9:43 left in the third quarter.
The Bulldogs came back with their own big play, as Johnson started right, cut back left and outran the Cougar defense to the front pylon for a 55-yard touchdown.
Kyle Purselley added the PAT kick, and the Bulldogs again led by eight points, 21-13, with 9:02 left in the third quarter.
On their ensuing possession, the Cougars had their second big pass, as Ingram found Childress on a crossing pattern for a 42-yard gain to the Bulldog 39.
Ingram hit Broderhausen for a 19-yard gain to the Eustace 20, and two plays later, the Bulldogs were flagged for pass interference in the end zone, giving Community a first-and-goal at the Bulldog 1.
It took two plays for Ingram to sneak in, and the Cougars had pulled back within two points at 21-19. A fake PAT kick backfired when the Bulldogs snuffed out the attempted pass.
The Bulldogs needed to run some clock while scoring points, so they did that, taking the last 5:42 of the third quarter and the first 2:30 of the fourth to march 62 yards in 14 plays.
The key play in the march came on fourth-and-two at the Community 46. The Bulldogs lined up in punt formation, but the up back (Compton) got the ball for a five-yard gain and a first down at the Cougar 41.
Compton gained 19 yards on a keeper three plays later, setting Eustace up at the Community 11.
After Compton’s one-yard plunge gave the Bulldogs a first-and-goal on the Cougar 1, Compton got the one with another plunge.
The Bulldogs tried a run for two to give them a 10-point lead, but fumbled, leaving them ahead by eight, 27-19, with 9:37 left to play.
It was time for Community to pull out its third long pass, which came on second-and-11 at the Cougar 40.
Stanley found White free on the Eustace sideline. White slipped a tackle and was gone for a 60-yard score, again pulling the Cougars back within two points at 27-25.
A pass for two was broken up, but it was a one-possession game with plenty of time (8:04) left.
Another long Bulldog drive would have been just what the doctor ordered, but Eustace failed to convert on a second fourth-down gamble, as a run by Johnson came up two yards short at the Eustace 47.
It was time for Community’s fourth big pass play, as Ingram found Craig Schambach all alone on the Bulldog sideline for a 43-yard touchdown.
This time, the Cougars converted a run for two, ending the scoring with 3:20 to play.
The Bulldogs needed a touchdown, but stalled at their 40.
Facing fourth-and-eight, Johnson took a pitch right, then stopped and threw back across the field for a wide-open Compton.
Johnson’s pass was just a hair too long, however, and the Cougars were able to run out the final 94 seconds with three plays.

KHS to visit Parish Episcopal
Monitor Staff Reports
KEMP–Opening with a loss against a talented Brownsboro team, the Kemp Yellowjackets will hit the road again this Friday when they travel to north Dallas to take on the Parish Episcopal Panthers.
Yellowjacket head coach Greg Anderson said he saw a lot of good things in last Friday’s loss in Van’s sparkling new stadium.
“I thought we played really well in the first half,” he said. “We had about six minutes in the fourth quarter where things got really ugly, and that was pretty much the outcome of the game.”
Brownsboro blew open the contest with a 38-yard punt return, which put them up by three touchdowns, 36-15, with 6:58 to play.
“If we don’t give up that punt return, and go down and score (as they did), it’s a one-touchdown game, with the opportunity to onside kick,” Anderson said.
“I though our offensive line played pretty well in the first half, and at times in the second half,” Anderson said. “We’ve got to be more consistent.”
Brownsboro was a playoff team last year, “and I’m not so sure they won’t be better this year,” he added.
The Brownsboro game was a coming-out of sorts for Cris Murray, who had touchdown runs of 67 and 68 yards in the first half.
“Cris ran the ball well,” Anderson said. “He’s always been a track guy for us, and he’s bulked up a little bit, getting some size to go with his speed.
“I would like to see Wesley (Kerr) and Brandon (Smith) run the ball more,” he added. “They (defenses) are going to be focused on Cris, so we need to be a little more balanced.”
The kicking game continues to be a concern, Anderson conceded.
“Punt and kickoff return teams are okay,” he said. “(Punt) snaps and coverage, and we’ve got to get more consistent kicking on our kickoffs and PATs.”
Parish Episcopal’s Panthers have the talent to expose any deficiencies in the kicking game, Anderson said.
“They were really good last year, and they’ve got a solid group back,” he said. “They’re big up front – they compare to Brownsboro – and they’ve got kids who can really go at receiver, running back and in the (defensive) secondary.”
Speed at the skill positions always is a defensive concern, but the ’Jackets are also faster this year, so that might help negate some of the Panthers’ advantage, he added.
Parish Episcopal is a run-oriented team that doesn’t do anything fancy, Anderson said.
“They’re double tight end, double wing just about every play,” he said. “They play smash-mouth football and come right at you.
“They try to put a lot of bodies in there, to pound and pound away at you, and if the back can get through, they have the speed to get away,” he added. “It’s old-fashioned football.”
Defensively, the Panthers run a fairly standard 3-4 scheme. “Again, they’ve got good size up front, and their linebackers are very aggressive, with speed in the secondary,” Anderson said.
Defensively, the ’Jackets want to clog up the Panthers’ running attack.
Against the Bears, the ’Jackets passed 24 plays and ran 34 plays.
“We want to be more balanced, run and pass, and force them to cover the whole field,” Anderson said.
Directions to Parish Episcopal: From Kemp, take U.S. 175 northwest to I-635 (LBJ Freeway) and go north on LBJ to the Midway Road exit (exit 23). Turn right on Midway Road for a half-mile and take a left on Alpha Road. Take an immediate right onto Sigma Road, and the stadium will be on your left.

Panthers welcome Hornets
Monitor Staff Reports
MABANK–One thing Mabank and Kaufman fans can agree on – when their teams play, it’s going to be fun to watch.
Last year, the hosting Panthers scored 28 points in the fourth quarter to nip the visiting Lions, and last Friday night, the teams went to double overtime before the Panthers secured a 24-23 win with a defensive stop on a two-point conversion try.
“I thought we were going to have a problem when we botched our first three possessions,” Mabank head coach Jimmy Cantrell said Monday. “Then we settled into a routine and got our offense going.
“It was a great game,” he added. “You’ve got to give Kaufman credit.”
Next up is the Panthers’ home opener at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 4, against a former district foe, the Athens Hornets, a pre-season pick to win District 20-3A.
“Athens, athletically, is every bit as good as Kaufman,” Cantrell said. “They’ve got a new coach (Paul Essary) and a new system (the spread). Seeing them on film, it looks like they haven’t quite found their rhythm yet, although they did find their rhythm a little bit in the fourth quarter against Wills Point.”
Last Friday, the Hornets trailed against hosting Wills Point 21-0, but scored twice in the fourth quarter to throw a big scare into the Tiger fans before losing 21-14.
In addition to giving the Panthers a little confidence, last Friday’s win against Kaufman is also the first overtime win for a Cantrell team in Mabank.
“We’ve been in three or four, and that’s the first one we’ve won,” he said. “We finally got that monkey off our back.”
Because the Panthers held spring practices last May, they started a week late and had just one scrimmage before playing Kaufman, so it took almost a quarter before the Panthers got into a rhythm on offense against Kaufman, Cantrell said.
“I thought the offensive line played well, and they’re not going to do anything but get better,” he said. “I thought our coaching staff did a good job on their rotations, keeping players as fresh as possible.
“(Senior quarterback Jordan) Featherston drove the bus well; he had one pick,” Cantrell added. “Defensively, we kind of exceeded expectations a little bit.”
The Panthers shut down the Lions in Mabank territory three times in the first quarter, and held them pretty much in check until the final minute or so, when Kaufman tied the game in regulation with a long pass.
“Nine times out of 10, they don’t complete the pass, and seven times out of 10, we pick it,” Cantrell said. “That’s just the way it goes. They’re very dangerous, and they’re well-coached – not an easy team to beat by any stretch of the imagination.”
The Panthers come into the Athens game somewhat beat-up after the very physical contest against the Lions. Running back/defensive back Darius Robertson got poked in the eye, but is “probable” for the Athens game, Cantrell said.
Special teams – always a critical area of any game – played a key role in the Wills Point contest, as the Hornets had a punt blocked.
“Defensively, they (the Hornets) seem to be pretty solid,” Cantrell said. “It will be a challenge for our offense.
“We need to hit a deep one and show people we can stretch the field,” he added. “Also, we’re going to have to run the ball a little bit better.”
Athens quarterback Carson Hutson “impressed me,” Cantrell said. Wide receiver/running back Randall Gamble also steps in at quarterback at times.
“No. 5, Courtney Whitehead, made some big catches late in the game (against Wills Point),” he added. “They were dropping them in the first half, but they didn’t drop many in the second half.”
Defensively, the Hornets have gone to a 3-4 look, something a little different from what the Panthers have seen so far.
“We need to establish a running game and stretch the field, and do what we did everywhere else,” Cantrell said.
“We need to improve in all areas of the game, and we need to get more out of our special teams,” he added. “The defense needs to force more turnovers.”


Upcoming games

GBC co-ed softball

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)


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)

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

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


Copyright © 2009, MediaOne, L.L.C.