Mustangs all set for China Spring, a look at the Cougars

Published 8:33 am Thursday, December 2, 2021

West Orange-Stark’s superb season rolls on after a decisive 36-17 victory over Bellville in the Class 4A Region III Division II Regional Semifinals last week.

The win over the Brahmas marked the 10th time in 11 years that the Mustangs have reached at least the Regional Finals in Coach Cornel Thompson’s run as the head coach.

Now the Mustangs (11-1) will look to slow down the red-hot China Spring Cougars (13-0) in the 4A Region III Division ! Regional Finals Friday at 7 p.m. at Tomball High School.

Last week the Cougars stunned defending state champion Carthage 27-17. The China Spring win ended Carthage’s 41-game winning streak.

It was a nice revenge win for the Cougars, who fell to Carthage 52-14 in the Regional Finals last season.

This week it will be the Mustangs seeking some payback. China Spring downed the Mustangs 35-22 in the area round last year. The Cougars bolted out to a 35-7 halftime edge in that one. However, the Mustangs were without eight key players, who sat that one out due to Covid protocols.

China Spring, District 9-4A Division II district champions, will check in averaging 47.5 points a game while the District 11-4A Division II champion Mustangs are averaging 37.9 points a game.

Both teams have been stout defensively. The Mustangs, always a powerhouse on the defensive side of the ball, are allowing just 11.1 points a game. China Spring, though strong on offense, has shown the most improvement on the defensive side of the ball this year as the Cougars are allowing just 10.7 points a game. They held Carthage to a season-low 17 points last week.

The Cougars have a tremendous leader in quarterback Major Bowden and makes everything go for China Spring. He likes to run the ball and get on the edges and has a nice option game and he can also get loose up the middle.

The Cougars love to run the ball but Bowden also can through it with accuracy as China Spring likes to set up the passing game, especially on second or third down and short.

He has two go-to receivers in Tre Hafford and Isaiah Williams. Dawson Exline is also a solid back in the backfield.

Exline also headlines the Cougar defensive front. Brayden Faulkner has been a load at middle linebacker.

The kicking game could be a huge factor as well. Last season the Mustangs got behind early as they muffed three kicks by the Cougars, setting China Spring’s offense up in short-field situations.

The winner of the WO-S-China Spring battle will face either Cuero (12-1) or Navarro (10-2) in the Regional Finals next week.

 

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CHINA SPRING COUGARS (13-0)

China Spring 49, Trinity Christian 15

China Spring 21, Lorena 13

China Spring 57, Brownwood 21

China Spring 47, Lampasas 7

China Spring 56, Mexia 7

China Spring 74, Jarrell 0

China Spring 41, Gatesville 10

China Spring 48, Salado 7

China Spring 52, Robinson 21

China Spring 48, Waco Connally 7

China Spring 50, Madisonville 7

China Spring 48, Sealy 7

China Spring 27, Carthage 17

China Spring points 618, Opponents points 139

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WO-S MUSTANGS (11-1)

Nederland 14, WO-S 6

WO-S 39, LC-M 20

WO-S 40, Newton 26

WO-S 24, Hamshire-Fannett 8

WO-S 54, Hardin-Jefferson 7

WO-S 45, Silsbee 20

WO-S 27, Orangefield 7

WO-S 73, Liberty 7

WO-S 42, Bridge City 0

WO-S 49, La Marque 0

WO-S 20, Jasper 7

WO-S 36, Bellville 17

WO-S points 455, Opponents points 133