District openers begin battle for playoffs
The week Orange County high school football fans have been waiting for has arrived. District openers begin the march to the playoffs and it all kicks off this Friday.
For Orange County’s Dist 20-4A teams, action gets underway with the Little Cypress-Mauriceville Bears hosting Livingston. The Vidor Pirates will go on the road to face the Nederland Bulldogs.
In Dist 21-3A, the Bridge City Cardinals will host Buna and the Orangefield Bobcats will travel to Silsbee to face the Tigers. The West Orange-Stark Mustangs will open district play also on the road against Hamshire-Fannett.
Torrential rains washed away Friday night football in Southeast Texas last weekend. Of Orange County’s teams only Orangefield managed to get in a game. The Bobcats slugged in the mud for a 19-14 win over the Kelly Bulldogs in Beaumont. Meanwhile, West Orange-Stark, Little Cypress-Mauriceville and Vidor games were scrubbed due to thunderstorms. Bridge City had an open week and missed the deluge altogether.
Orangefield has posted a good non-district season against balanced opponents under second year Head Coach Josh Smalley. The win over Kelly in rain soaked Beaumont proves the Bocats will be on the prowl in Dist. 21-3A. The Bobcat offense churned out 292 total yards and three touchdowns by Wiley, Wiley and Company. Carmichael Wiley collected 142 yards and two touchdowns on 24 carries. Carl Wiley added 90 yards on 21 carries and one touchdown in the 19-14 win.
The Orangefield Bobcats go into district 3-1 defeating East Chambers 22-21, Jasper 30-22 and losing to Class 2A powerhouse Newton 36-0 before downing Beaumont-Kelly in foul weather.
The Bridge City Cardinals start district this week with a 1-2 record after a 44-20 loss to Newton and a 54-13 loss against Vidor. The Cardinals defeated Kelly 31-7 prior to the open week last Friday.
The West Orange-Stark Mustangs kick-off district action with a 2-1 record. The Mustangs defeated Little Cypress-Mauriceville 21-3 and fell to the Port Neches Groves Indians 37-34 before taking out Beaumont Central 31-7.
The Little Cypress-Mauriceville Bears are 0-2 after taking on two of the state’s best from Class 3A, the Dist. 21 West Orange-Stark Mustangs and Silsbee Tigers. The Bears fell 21-3 against WOS and 34-20 against Silsbee.
The Vidor Pirates are 2-1 in non district play defeating Santa Fe 28-19, Bridge City 54-13 and losing to Clear Brook 33-29.
Other than respective homecoming games there are key match-ups on the schedule in the coming weeks local football fans will want to keep an eye on. One match up no one wants to miss will be when the West Orange-Stark Mustangs host the Silsbee Tigers on Nov. 8. The Tigers have been predicted to win the Dist. 21-3A title this season but the Mustangs are out to prove the soothsayers wrong.
Another big match up on Nov. 8 is the annual Bayou Bowl between Bridge City and Orangefield. This season the Bobcats have the home feild advantage and as usual playoff implications will be on the line for both teams.