orangeleader.com (Orange, Texas)

August 9, 2013

Bobcats beating the heat with experience as season approaches

Van Wade
The Orange Leader

ORANGEFIELD — Practices have been so bright at Orangefield during the first week of football practice that most of the coaching staff were wearing shades.

The Bobcats will be seeking their first playoff appearance since 2003 as second-year head coach Josh Smalley is ready to lead the Bobcat charges after a 4-6 2012 season.

“The practices have gone really well, they’ve been steamy, but what else is new in Southeast Texas,” said Smalley. “The kids really worked hard during the offseason and got after it pretty good up here during the summer.”

Smalley and the Bobcat staff have plenty of nice veterans to work with, including 15 starters back.

“That number looks high and we like it, but several of those guys were two-way starters,” said Smalley. “We’re leaning on what is a very good senior class. We’re hoping some of the young kids can step in there and give us some good, solid depth.”

The Bobcats will be seeking their first playoff appearance since 2003 as second-year head coach Josh Smalley is ready to lead the Bobcat charges after a 4-6 2012 season.

“It’s been awhile but we think we’ve got a good group that wants to break that trend,” said Smalley. “The kids really want it and we really love their attitudes here in the first week. It gets even better when they put those pads on.”

The Bobcats’ first scrimmage will be Aug. 16 at home against Vidor with the freshmen starting at 4 p.m. followed by the JV (5 p.m.) and varsity (6 p.m.). Orangefield will scrimmage at LC-M Aug. 22 with the freshmen starting at 5 p.m. followed by the JV (6 p.m.) and varsity (7 p.m.).

“We thought we’d pick on a couple 4A schools in our scrimmages,” laughed Smalley. “Those are two good tests for us before East Chambers rolls into town August 30.”

The Bobcats will open the season Aug. 30 at home against East Chambers and will start District 21-3A play Sept. 27 at Silsbee.

Over at Little Cypress-Mauriceville, the Bears will look to improve off last season’s 4-6 campaign as head coach Randy Crouch enters his fifth season in Bear Country.

The Bears will scrimmage against Goose Creek Memorial Aug. 16 at Baytown’s Stallworth Stadium with the frehmen starting at 5 p.m. followed by the JV (6 p.m.) and varsity (7 p.m.)

The Bears will host Orangefield in a scrimmage Aug. 22 with the freshmen starting at 5 p.m. followed by the JV (6 p.m.) and varsity (7 p.m.).

LC-M, which will be seeking its first playoff appearance since 1997, will open their 2013 campaign at home Aug. 30 against West Orange-Stark. The Bears’ first District 20-4A game will be Sept. 27 at home against Livingston.

The Vidor Pirates will look to pick up where they left off last year behind long-time head coach Jeff Mathews.

Vidor made the playoffs for the second straight year, finishing 9-2.

The Pirates’ first scrimmage will be at Orangefield Aug. 16 with the freshmen starting at 4 p.m. followed by the JV (5 p.m.) and varsity (6 p.m.).  Vidor will host WO-S in a scrimmage Aug. 23 with the freshmen starting at 5 p.m. followed by the JV (6 p.m.) and the varsity (7 p.m.).

The Pirates open up their season Aug. 30 on the road at Santa Fe. They will begin District 20-4A play Sept. 27 on the road at Nederland.

The West Orange-Stark Mustangs will look to continue their mometum under Coach Cornel Thompson as they look to secure a postseason berth for the 10th consecutive year after going 13-1 in 2012 and reaching the 3A Division II Region III Finals.

WO-S will host Nederland in a scrimmage Aug. 16 with the freshmen starting at 5 p.m. followed by the JV (6 p.m.) and the varsity (7 p.m.). The Mustangs will head to Vidor for a scrimmage Aug. 23 with the freshmen starting at 5 p.m. followed by the JV (6 p.m.) and the varsity (7 p.m.).

WO-S will open its season on the road Aug. 30 at LC-M and will start District 21-3A play Sept. 27 at Hamshire-Fannett.

The Bridge City Cardinals will be looking to secure a fifth straight playoff appearance behind the leadership of Coach Cris Stump after going 5-6 in 2012 and making it to the bidistrict round.

Bridge City will visit Lumberton Aug. 16 at 7 p.m. in its first scrimmage and hists Woodville in its second one Aug. 22 at 7 p.m.

The Cardinals will kickoff their campaign Aug. 30 at home against Newton and will beging District 21-3A play Sept. 27 at home against Buna.