By Erik Walsh
Monitor Sports Editor
EUSTACE–District rival Arp edged out the Eustace Lady Bulldogs volleyball team Sept. 29 at home in a battle of the undefeated vying for sole possession of first place.
The Lady Bulldogs (5-1) are looking very good this year and had made mince meat out of its district competition coming into the Arp game. Prior to facing the Lady Tigers, Eustace destroyed Frankston 25-9, 25-14, 25-4 and West Rusk 25-10, 25-10 and 25-10 to maintain a perfect record in district play.
Both teams were riding five-game winning streaks with their play separating them from their 3A-District 18 opponents. It was a clash of the two clear best and the game didn’t disappoint.
Arp jumped out to an early lead after the first set, winning it 25-19. The Lady Bulldogs railed and rebounded after the loss to pick up set two and three with 25-20 and 25-19 victories to go up two sets to one. Arp though, would not easily be beaten and topped Eustace 25-15 to force the decisive fifth set. The final showed how close these two teams are in terms of skill and caliber of play, with Arp barely winning 16-14 in extra points.
The Lady Bulldogs were able to rack up a bunch of stats in the extended five-game match. Sydnee Wynn nailed 74 kills in the games and blocked 9.5 shots. Marshalla Padgett had 52 kills, two blocks, one assist and one dig. Jessica Plunk was a presence up front with a team-high 10.5 blocks. Plunk also added nine kills. Reece Thorn led the team with 90 assists and added one block, while Kasey Lopez had 30 kills, one block and 34 assists. Abra Roberts played the passer role with 64 assists.
Eustace finishes its first rotation through the district schedule when they face Rice Oct. 2 on the road. If the Lady Bulldogs and Arp continue their district dominance, Eustace won’t get the chance to face them again and take the district’s top spot until Oct. 23.
Posted by : October 4, 2015| On :
By Erik Walsh
Posted by : October 1, 2015| On :
By Ryan Moulds
KEMP–Despite a great game by freshman phenom Dreyson Watters, Kemp was unable to stop a vicious running attack lead by Quarterback Caleb Twyford and Farmersville eventually pulled away for a 61-27 victory over the Yellowjackets in Kemp.
“We played decent in the first half but not in the second half” said Head Coach Brandon Hankins. “We are still getting better and learning to compete but the kids didn’t give up and this team and community is resilient.”
Kemp went on offense first to start things off. Dreyson Watters threw an interception to Caleb Twyford on his very first pass attempt. The interception was returned all the way to the 18-yard line of Kemp. The Farmers kept the ball on the ground running it on every play until Caleb Twyford powered it in from 1-yard out. Will Vallow’s extra point attempt was good and Farmersville drew first blood with 8:18 left in the opening quarter.
Kemp’s next drive got off to a good start with Braxton Watters running for a first down but he injured his ankle on the play and wouldn’t return. He was later seen on the sideline on crutches. Alan Quezada filled in at running back for the rest of the game. Dreyson Watters was sacked on third down and Kemp punted. An unsportsmanlike conduct penalty set Farmersville back 15-yards to start their drive.
On third down Kemp brought the blitz and Blake Underwood sacked Caleb Twyford who fumbled the ball. Underwood recovered giving Kemp great field possession. The next Kemp drive was all Dreyson Watters. The quarterback picked up 28-yards on a keeper and a few plays later powered in for a touchdown from 7-yards out, carrying three defenders into the end zone with him. Adriana Argueta kicked the extra point to tie the game at 7 with 42 seconds left in the opening period.
The Farmer’s next drive spanned into the second quarter and ended in Caleb Twyford’s 29 yard touchdown run. They nailed the extra point and retook the lead 14-7 with 9:48 left in the second quarter.
Kemp wouldn’t waste any time scoring again. They kept the ball on the ground with Dreyson Watters, Quezada, and Kane Johnson. After a huge run, which included a pretty spin move by Johnson, Dreyson Watters went in from 16-yards out on a keeper. The extra point was right up the middle and Kemp tied things up again 14 all with 6:17 left in the half.
Farmersville got the ball back and went on a long drive that included heavy doses of Caleb Twyford and his younger brother Cade Twyford on the ground. Caleb Tyford ran a quarterback sneak on the goal line and got in to retake the lead. The extra point was successful and Farmersville took a 21-14 lead with 1:47 left.
Kemp needed to move down the field and they did just that. Only a few seconds after the Farmers scored Dreyson Watters used his legs again on his longest run of the day, a 63-yard touchdown. The extra point was good to tie the game at 21 with 1:33 left in the half and the shootout continued.
Farmersville wasn’t done yet. They moved down the field and scored in exactly one minute with Caleb Twyford taking advantage of a blown coverage and finding Brady Elliott for a 44-yard touchdown pass with 33 seconds left. The extra point was successful and the teams went into halftime with Farmersville leading 28-21.
The Farmers would get the ball first to start the second half and Kemp played solid defense to get them off the field, including a sack by Jake Hibdon. Kemp drove deep into the Farmer’s red zone but a costly fumble was recovered by Farmersville preventing a score. The Farmers would drive into Kemp territory but they eventually fumbled themselves. Joseph Lopez recovered and set Kemp up on offense. Dreyson Watters found Josiah Brewington wide open all the way to the 28-yard line and Dreyson Watters finished the drive with a 2 yard touchdown run. The extra point was no good but Kemp pulled within one point 28-27.
Cade Twyford showed off his speed on the next Farmer possession, going 38 yards to the Kemp 29-yard line. Lucas Hernandez took a hand off on the next play and went the final 29 yards for a score. The extra point was successful and that made the score 35-27.
On the next Kemp drive Caleb Twyford made what may have been his most impressive play of the night. With Kemp driving, he picked off a Dreyson Watters pass and outran everyone. He returned it 85-yards for a back-breaking score. The extra point was good and with 1:55 left in the third quarter the score was 42-27 in Farmersville’s favor.
Kemp would go three and out and punt the ball back to Farmersville to start the fourth quarter. Caleb Tyford continued to tear up the defense, bringing his team all the way down the field and running it in from 7 yards to make the score 48-27.
After Kemp turned the ball over on downs Caleb Twyford would score one more time for good measure, going 40 yards to put the game away. With 7:10 left in the game Farmersville had a 55-27 lead.
The Farmers would score one more time in garbage time on a Elijah Carroll 11-yard run to extend the lead to 61-27. Kemp would turn the ball over on downs on their final drive and Farmersville would take a knee and come away with a 61-27 win on the road.
The Yellowjackets have a bye week next week before they play Teague on the road. The Farmers also have a bye week and will go on the road to play Pottsboro in their next game.
Posted by : September 27, 2015| On :
By Erik Walsh
Monitor Sports Editor
MABANK–There’s a renewed enthusiasm this year for the Mabank Panthers athletic program. Green shirts fill the football stands, and yard signs and Panther flags are displayed proudly in front of residences and local businesses. The words on everyone’s lip? We are Mabank.
The Mabank Booster Club is among the many catalysts for the renewed community involvement and excitement. First year club president Randy Teague says it’s important to let the students know they are supported and are involved in something bigger than themselves.
“As a booster club, we can’t directly affect win totals,” Teague said. “But we can make sure each of the kids know how much they mean to us and they are not just playing for themselves, but for all the people from Mabank to Seven Points that make up the school district.”
Students experienced the community involvement in full force last week during homecoming. This year’s festivities included a homecoming parade on Market Street and a spirit rally and bonfire at the pavilion. The football team made the community proud in the big homecoming game against Kemp, winning 34-28 in front of a capacity crowd about the same size of total residency of Mabank.
It’s been a great year to be green and people are saying the words with pride. “We are Mabank” is all over social media posts encouraging the athletes, chanted during football games by cheerleaders and students, printed on T-shirts and even strapped across the truck that moves the marching band’s equipment.
After taking over as booster club president last summer, Teague called first year Head Football Coach Mikey Thompson for a branding suggestion and motto that could help unify Mabank going forward. Thompson uttered the words “We are Mabank,” and it’s been a hit ever since.
“These kids have been through a lot the past year or so from the change of Athletic Directors last year to the head coach problems in January,” he said. “They have been battle-hardened and we want to show that strength and that we are not the same old Mabank.”
The booster club has helped make football pregame an event to behold with a fireworks display and even skydivers landing inside Panther Stadium.
“There have been some exciting moments before games,” Teague said.
Other activities the booster club sponsors is tailgating before football games at 5:30 p.m., feeding coaches and players breakfast Friday mornings at Mabank Café, and introducing the Panthers of the Week at booster club meetings each Monday.
“We are so proud of our Panthers of the Week,” Teague said.
While he’s been the president of the booster club, Teague says three women in particular do most of the work behind the scenes.
“None of this would be possible without Robin Massey Neighbors, Tammy Truelove or Mindy Brockman,” he said.