The Orange Leader
The Orangefield Bobcats have had a decade-long drought as far as the playoffs have been concerned.
Well, on Friday night they can seal their first postseason bid for sure since 2003 if they can defeat Orange County rival Bridge City in the Bayou Bowl in District 21-3A action in the friendly confines of McLain Stadium.
The Bobcats (5-4, 2-3) helped themselves out in a big way by toppling Buna 35-20 last week.
Orangefield’s chances of getting in the postseason is still possibly good with a loss to the Cardinals (2-7, 1-4) but the Redbirds would love to make the short road trip to rain on the Bobcats’ parade. A lot boils down to whether or not Hardin-Jefferson (5-4, 2-3) defeats Hamshire-Fannett (3-5, 1-4). If H-J wins and Orangefield loses to Bridge City, than five teams would be tied for third all at 2-4.
IF Orangefield and H-J both win, than those two teams will advance to the postseason.
IF H-j wins and the Bobcats lose, the Bobcats would be in if they lose to BC by less than 15 points.
The Bobcats squeezed Buna last week with their power running attack.
Tailback Carl Wiley ran all over the Cougars for 298 yards on 26 carries while quarterback Carmichael Wiley had 103 yards on 13 carries as the Bobcats piled up nearly 500 yards rushing.
The Bobcats are churning out 344 yards a game.
Carl Wiley is by far 21-3A’s leading rusher for the season. He has bruised and sprinted his way to 1,352 yards and six touchdowns on 199 carries.
Carmichael Wiley has darted for 634 yards and six TDs on 117 carries and has passed for 231 yards and two scores.
The Bobcats will face a Cardinal defense that has allowed a district-high 408.6 yards a game.
The Cardinals allowed 405 yards in a 40-16 loss at the hands of West Orange-Stark last week.
Quarterback Chase Shugart will power the Bridge City offense, which is averaging 255.8 yards a game.
Shugart has completed 81-of-192 passes for 1,167 yards and has eight TDs and 14 interceptions.
Cardinal wideout Malcolm Busby has hauled in 24 receptions for 400 yards and three TDs. Blaine Slaughter (16-197-1) and Cade Moseley (13-145-2) are also solid at receiver.
Jonah Lemoine leads the Cardinal ground attack with 430 yards and five TDs on 108 carries.
Bridge City will face a Bobcat defense that has allowed 291.7 yards a game. Orangefield limited Buna to 276 yards last week.
Last year the Cardinals and Bobcats battled for the third-place playoff spot in the regular season finale and Bridge City came away with a 24-13 victory as the Cardinals nailed down their fourth straight playoff berth. Bridge City outgained the Bobcats 377-262 in that one.