Week 8 - 2018 - Game of the Week


By Leman Saunders

Week 8 Game of the Week:
Ira (6-0) @ Spur (5-1)

1A DI district four showdown! Spur was idle last week so this will be their first district game, but Ira coming off a 46-0 victory over district foe Rotan. There is little doubt that this battle of the Bulldogs will have big implications.

Historically it appears that Spur has never beaten Ira on the gridiron.
Ira features a solid balanced offensive attack and a defense that has only given up 72 point all season. For Ira Anthony Coy, Nathan Goodwin, Matthew Brazil and Karson Valentine are the players to watch out for. Last week against Rotan in a game that ended at halftime via the mercy rule Goodwin was efficient passing going 4-5 for 59 yards with three touchdowns. Spur opened the season with a loss to Crowell but has since righted the ship and their five straight wins include a 60-28 win over a red hot Motley County team in week three. Ethan Parsons and Jacob Cole are the players to watch for Spur. Two weeks ago in a weather shortened game Parsons rushed for 148 yards and three touchdowns on just eight carries in two quarters in a 21-6 win over O’Donnell.

Keys to the Game:
It is all about the running game in this game. Who can contain the other teams rush attack the best? Personally I think Spur has the best running back in this game, but Ira has the better running game scheme…thus balancing it all out in that category. So what does that all mean? It means the play action game will be key in moving the ball on long down plays for both teams. Spur’s secondary will need to be able to cover Matt Brazil and Ira’s defense will need to be able to contain scrambling would be passers or runners while maintaining coverage in the secondary.

My Take:
In what should be a classic game, in a great stadium in Spur. If the weather is permitting I suggest everyone who can make the trip out to the game. I think Ira prevails in this Battle of the Bulldogs as they have a few extra weapons at their disposal than does Spur and I like their passing game better than that of Spurs and this game, between two run heavy squads, may come down to crucial passing downs. Ira 54 Spur 50

Other Games to watch:
Abbott (4-2) @ Gholson (6-0)

Gholson is undefeated and heading into their biggest game of the season thus far against the epic six-man program that is Terry Crawford’s Abbott Panthers. Last week Abbott defeated Covington 54-8 in their district opener while Gholson sat idle. The Panthers feature a solid running game, as usual, with Paxton Miller logging a majority of the carries for Abbott this season. Miller recorded 152 yards and three touchdowns on 16 carries last week against Covington. Gholson has a solid running game as well as the Wildcats; ground attack is led by CJ Hutchison who rushed for 163 yards and four TDs on just six carries in their week six win over Kopperl. While I love the idea of Gholson claiming their first ever victory over Abbott, I just don’t think it is in the cards. Abbott 64 Gholson 40

Anton (6-1) @ Amherst (5-1)
DII district three matchup that should prove to be worth the price of admission. Anton is the new kid on the block as far as division two goes as they have been in division one since joining the six-man ranks in 2011. Amherst on the other hand has been a DII playoff mainstay having made the playoff eight out of the last nine seasons. Anton has played the tougher schedule, but Amherst is coming off a bye week that might help them get ready for this matchup. In the end I think the Anton Bulldogs’ squad over takes the Bulldogs of Amherst and with it a front row seat for the post season. Anton 54 Amherst 38

Fruitvale (2-3) @ High Island (2-5)
High Island has been a bit of a surprise this season as they look to be on a down season sitting at 2-5 as they enter district play against Fruitvale at home this week. The Cardinals are coming off back to back losses to highly ranked private schools Emery-Weiner (59-14) and Baytown Christian (47-0). Coach Matt Miracle is confident in his squad and is looking to make a statement game here at home this week. Fruitvale is 2-3 having had two scheduled games cancelled due to weather this year. Last week they traveled to Fannindel and lost 61-7. High Island I feel benefits from having played more games against tougher opponents and that helps them win a close game to open up DI district 12 play. High Island 36 Fruitvale 21