Sports and Outdoors

Thursday, September 16, 2010

 Lake Info

Normal Lake Level is 322.00 feet above Mean Sea Level.
Current level for Cedar Creek Lake is: 320.46 Water Temperature:
82  degrees - top
degrees - bottom




’Jackets hoping to stay focused
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

KEMP–One thing is certain – focus will be the key for the Kemp Yellowjackets this Friday night, when they head over to nearby Malakoff for a non-district contest with the hosting Tigers.
It was clear the ’Jackets had their minds on other things last Friday night when they were shellacked by hosting Mineola 61-7.
Players, coaches and school officials alike were stunned at the arrest of athletic trainer Eric Cabral the night before the game (see related story, page 1A).
“I will not use that as an excuse,” Kemp head coach Greg Anderson said Monday morning, “but I’m sure it was (a distraction) in many ways.
“We were not the same team we were the first two weeks,” he added.
Going into the Mineola game, Anderson said he had expected a fairly close contest between two evenly matched teams. As it turned out, Mineola scored on the first play of the game and things went downhill from there.
“The kids got off the bus, but they were never there,” Anderson said. “We’ve had some things go wrong before, and we’ve been able to put things together. (Friday), we never righted the ship.”
It will take a focused Yellowjacket team to face the Malakoff Tigers, who improved to 3-0 by shocking the visiting Kerens Bobcats with two late touchdowns to win 29-27 Friday night.
Kerens, ranked No. 9 in Class 1A, dominated the game for the first three quarters, forcing the Tigers into four turnovers and racking up more than 400 yards of offense.
In the fourth quarter, however, Tiger junior quarterback Jordan Teague, who had thrown three picks earlier and saw his receivers drop numerous on-target throws, caught fire, completing 5-of-7 passes for two touchdowns and helping keep drives alive with his scrambling ability.
Malakoff wasn’t known for pulling off that sort of comeback before Jamie Driskill arrived last year. In his first year at the helm, the Tigers improved from 0-10 to an 8-3 playoff team.
“Coach Driskill has done a very good job over there,” Anderson said. “He’s really turned it around.
“It certainly will be a tough game, but I’m more worried about us than Malakoff,” he added. “We’ve got to focus on us this week.”
The Tigers use a spread offense and throw the ball most of the time, Anderson said.
“They run just enough to keep you honest,” he said. “Their biggest threat is their quarterback (Teague) running out of the pocket. He’s got a really good arm, and he’s throwing the ball well.”
The Tigers have excellent athletes with speed at all four receiver positions, Anderson noted.
“We played (Malakoff) my first year here,” he said. “They have the same type of kids, but they’re playing a lot harder and a lot smarter.”
Defensively, the Tigers use a 4-2-5 alignment, but may modify that against the run-oriented ’Jackets.
“I figure they’ll crowd nine or 10 people on the line of scrimmage and try to force us to throw the ball,” Anderson said.
With everyone crowded into the box, “I think the opportunity is there for big plays, if we can block folks at the point of attack,” he said.
“We’ve got to play smart football,” he added. “(Against Mineola) we weren’t there, mentally. We kept making mistake after mistake, and they took advantage of them.”

Panthers face first road trip
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

MABANK–After two spread teams, the Mabank Panthers will be facing another running team when they go on the road for the first time this Friday night to visit the Palestine Wildcats.
Both the Panthers and the Wildcats will be coming into this week’s contest at 0-3, following Mabank’s 35-28 loss to Canton and Palestine’s 28-7 loss to Van.
Mabank head coach Jimmy Cantrell was upbeat Monday morning after looking at film of the Canton game over the weekend. MHSvsCanton.jpg (239946 bytes)
“I think we did what we had to do to put ourselves in position to win the game,” Cantrell said.

Monitor Photo/
Kerry Yancey
Mabank Panther defensive back Chans Hall (11) helps break up a Canton pass in the end zone intended for Eric Walters (12) during the second quarter of the Eagles' 35-28 win over the hosting Panthers Friday.

The Panthers drove deep into Canton territory late in the contest, only to stall on downs at the Eagle 10, and then gave up first downs to the Eagles when the Panther defense had forced Canton into fourth-down situations.
“That (fourth-down conversions) are part of our growing pains,” Cantrell said. “We’re learning to get better, and we got better.
“The offense played well,” he said. “Our time of possession was much better, and the offense scored 28 points.
“We held them to fewer points than anybody else has,” Cantrell pointed out. “We’re doing some things right and we’re getting better week to week.”
While Quinlan Ford was a running team and both Wills Point and Canton are spread teams, the Panthers have seen three very different offenses in as many games, which is pretty tough on a group as young as the Panthers, he noted.
“We’re finding out what works and what doesn’t,” he said.
The Eagles’ win last week didn’t come on the arm of Canton quarterback Chance Wallace, but through his feet. (By the way, the day before the game, Wallace was named as the 3A Built Ford Tough Player of the Week for his performance in Canton’s 63-0 win over North Forney.)
When Wallace’s receivers were covered, he scrambled out of the pocket and proved to be both elusive and strong.
“He’s just a great player,” Cantrell said. “I don’t think there’s anybody in our district with a quarterback like that.”
While Wallace isn’t as tall as the typical spread quarterback, he’s not a small guy, Cantrell pointed out.
“He’s a load to bring down,” Cantrell said. “He could start at running back and be their best runner.”
Palestine’s Wildcats are a run-oriented team, heading outside on sweeps and pitch-outs about 80 percent of the time, which will attack the area where the Panthers have had difficulty so far, Cantrell said.
“They’re bigger and faster than we are, and we’ll see a lot of different formations, flopping tight ends, that sort of stuff,” he said. “We’ll have to deal with that, all the shifting they do.
“They’re a lot like us, in that the people we’ve played have been pretty good football teams,” he pointed out. “They’re getting better every week, too.”
The Wildcats have a strong coaching staff, and are disciplined on the field, he said.
So far, the Wildcats have not shown they can pass the ball effectively, but they don’t try to throw very often, Cantrell said.
“They did a lot of good things against Van. Even though they only scored seven points, they outflanked (Van) on several occasions,” Cantrell said. “Our game plan will be to defend the perimeter.”
Defensively, the Wildcats run the same scheme as Canton, so that will be a plus to face the same defense two weeks in a row, Cantrell said.
Palestine has more size in the line, and some skill players who probably have more speed than Mabank, but as far as overall team speed goes, the teams look fairly evenly matched, he said.
“Our kids are getting better, but it’s tough to keep your head up and you’re 0-3, heading into your first road game,” he said. “We’ve just got to keep getting better.”

Bulldogs head to Quitman
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

EUSTACE–Turnovers helped Edgewood’s Bulldogs get a big lead Friday night, as Eustace’s Bulldogs made way too many mistakes to win.
“As usual when they play us, Edgewood was hitting on all cylinders,” Eustace head coach Doug Wendel said Monday morning. EHSvsEwood.jpg (209889 bytes)
“We had poor tackling, poor technique at times, and we didn’t create any turnovers,” he added.

Monitor Photo/
Kerry Yancey
Eustace junior Blake Ward scoots around left end to score what would be the Bulldogs' final touchdown against Edgewood from four yards out Friday. Ward finished with nine carries for 67 yards.

“(Our) turnovers (seven fumbles, three lost) didn’t give us a chance.”
Wendel pointed out the young Eustace offensive line was seeing its third different defense in as many games.
“Edgewood came out in a completely different defense than they played (the week before), and it took time for us to adjust,” he said. “That’s one of our growing pains – three-and-outs aren’t good for us.”
While Eustace’s offense got on track in the second half, finishing with 315 yards rushing, the run-oriented option is not geared (so to speak) for mounting a comeback after falling behind.
That said, at one point – after Blake Ward scampered in from four yards out with 9:34 left to play – the Bulldogs were within striking distance at 34-21, and looked to have momentum on their side.
A defensive stop or turnover, and Eustace would have had a chance to pull within a touchdown, but Edgewood dashed those hopes by putting a march together and scoring a clinching touchdown in less than two minutes of game time.
“You’ve got to give Edgewood credit,” Wendel said. “They protected the ball well, their quarterback threw the ball well and they were hungry for a win.”
Now 0-3 on the season, Eustace will be going on the road for the first time this Friday night when they visit the Quitman Bulldogs.
“They’re 3-0, and they look like a team who’s playing with confidence,” Wendel said.
Quitman knocked off Como-Pickton’s Eagles Friday night behind the efforts of Devontae McNeal, who is “a do-everything player,” Wendel said.
McNeal is a three-sport MVP at Quitman, and the team looks to him to provide the bulk of their offense.
“They’re not real tricky or fancy,” Wendel said. “They just give the ball to their best player and say ‘win the game for us.’”
McNeal also keys the Quitman 4-3 defense. “They put No. 30 (McNeal) on the weak side, and he covers a lot of ground,” Wendel said.
This will be the first road game for the young Eustace squad. “It will be interesting in how we handle that,” Wendel said.
“We have to do three things to win the game,” he added. “First, we’ve got to protect the ball. Second, we’ve got to execute on offense. Third, we’ve got to tackle well – we’re going to have to gang-tackle No. 30.
“Another key for us is getting started at 7:30 and executing our offense, no matter what defensive front they come out in,” Wendel said.
Wendel said his coaches are going to “push the envelope” in practice this week, trying to get players, particularly the offensive line, to play more physically.
“Our offensive line has not improved, and part of that is nagging injuries have been keeping some of them out of practice,” he said. “We’ve got three weeks to get ready for district, and we’re not there yet.”


Upcoming Events


Sept. 25
Race Day

Oct. 9
Fun Sail

Oct. 23
Race Day

Nov. 6
Fun Sail or Make-up race


Sept. 17
MHS @ Palestine
KHS @ Malakoff
EHS @ Quitman

Sept. 24
MHS @ Brownsboro
KHS vs Fairfield
EHS @ Ferris

Oct. 1
MHS idle
KHS idle
EHS idle

Cross country

Sept. 17
EHS @ Sky Ranch

Sept. 18
MHS @ Crandall Relays
KHS @ Palestine Relays

Sept. 25
MHS @ Canton Relays
KHS @ Canton Relays
EHS @ Lions Den Relays


Sept. 17
MHS idle
KHS vs Venus
EHS @ Buffalo*

Sept. 21
MHS @ Rains
KHS vs Quinlan Ford
EHS vs Malakoff*

Sept. 24
MHS vs NForney*
KHS vs Kaufman*
EHS @ Blooming Grove*

Sept. 28
MHS vs N.Forney*
KHS @ Crandall*
EHS vs Teague*
(*district contest)

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