By JUSTIN RAINS
The Frankston football team knew it would have its hands full with Arp last week, and that proved true.
The Tigers topped the Indians, 47-26, to move to 3-0 in district play, while dropping the Indians to 1-1 in the league.
Now, Frankston coach Matt Nally wants to see his team bounce back as it welcomes in Hawkins (1-6, 0-3) to Jeff and Opal Austin Stadium (100 W. Perry St., Frankston, Texas 75763) Friday.
Kick-off is set for 7:30 p.m.
“Every game is a big game,” Nally said. “Hawkins is a good football team and everyone wants to look at record and things like that, but on any given Friday anything can happen.
“The Arp game, for our kids, is behind us,” he added. “Our kids have been nothing but focused on the Hawkins Hawks.”
The Indians go into the game hoping on offense to do what they’ve managed to do most of the season: Achieve a little balance.
That happened against Arp, despite the loss, as quarterback Ozzie Buckner again threw for more than 100 yards.
That might not seem like much, but it’s enough to make teams honor the pass and open up rushing lanes for Caleb Williams.
“Hopefully we’ll be able to establish the run, but we need to be able to exploit their secondary,” Nally said. “(Buckner) has gotten so much better each week, we’ve been able to keep people honest and keep people on their heels.”
Defensively, the Indians again prepare for a team that will run it right at them, much like Arp.
Unlike Arp, the Hawks haven’t been as successful and are scoring about 15 points per game on the year.
“They’re that old-school, smash mouth type of offense and try to run right at you,” Nally said. “Defense has been our strong point all year long, and we’ve got a lot of confidence in our defense and our kids have a lot of confidence in our defense.”
CAYUGA at Itasca
Despite, admittedly, not playing its best football last Friday, Cayuga got arguably its biggest win of 2012 over visiting Kerens, moving to 4-2 overall and 1-0 in District 6-A, Division I.
The goal for the Wildcats now? Not to overlook what might appear to be an easy test on the road against Itasca.
“This is a trap game for us,” CHS coach Greg Jenkins said. “(The players) have access to social media and the Internet and have kept up with Itasca’s season. We’re going to trust our senior leadership and we’re going to have our team ready to play.”
The Wampus Cats enter the game 1-5 overall and coming off of a 51-0 loss at the hands of Italy to open district play.
The chance of the team overlooking Itasca has been expounded by the fact that Italy awaits Cayuga next week in another big matchup. All week long, the Wildcats have been watching the Italy/Itasca film.
“It’s hard to make them watch Itasca when we play Italy next week and Italy is pounding them 51-0,” Jenkins admitted. “We’ve challenged the kids not to be worrying about Italy and not to be looking at Italy. We’ll worry about Italy next week.”
Total, Itasca has only scored 41 points in six games this season.
“We really think, over the last four games of the year, they’re going to put it together and be a good football team,” Jenkins said of Itasca. “We’re hoping it doesn’t happen this week.”
Cayuga will hope to avoid the turnover bug that plagued them Friday against Kerens, when the Wildcats fumbled four times, losing three of them.
Jenkins said he’s told his kids that, without costly turnovers, the season might be going even better.
“We put the ball on the turf at Mount Enterprise and it cost us the football game,” he said. “We’re close to being a 6-0 football team.”
Kick-off Friday is set for 7:30 p.m. at Itasca’s Patton Field (123 N. College, Itasca, Texas 76055.
Cushing at GRAPELAND
After dropping its district-opener to San Augustine, 68-20, last Friday, the Grapeland football team can’t afford to go into an 0-2 hole in league play.
Especially not with games still to come against state-ranked West Sabine (sixth in latest AP poll) and Alto (10th).
The Sandies (1-5, 0-1) should have a good chance to get on the board in district play this week, as they welcome in Cushing (1-5, 0-1) to Sandies Stadium (N. Olive St. at F/M 1272, Grapeland, Texas 75844) for a 7:30 p.m. kick-off Friday.
The Bearcats have only scored 73 points all season, and are coming off of a 61-0 loss at the hands of Alto.
Sports editor Justin Rains can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org