This weekend 3-6A and 4-6A renew their first round showdowns. Looking at the entire history of 3-6A vs 4-6A, you might say it has been one-sided.
Not many teams from 3-6A make it past the Metroplex schools. You could claim it’s because of larger muscles. You could claim it’s because Hispanics aren’t as good at athletics than African America players. While I do agree that strength is a huge factor, I don’t think the ethnicity should be considered at all. With that being said, here’s my preview of 3-6A vs. 4-6A this weekend.
ARLINGTON BOWIE AT PERMIAN
Lets start in Odessa, where Arlington Bowie (6-4) visits Permian (9-1). All people have talked about is Bowie’s muscles and how they should help them keep it close against Permian. While that is true, Permian can focus on LB Xavier Baskeyfield. Baskeyfield leads Bowie with 102 tackles, 75 of which are solo, four sacks, one pass breakup, and one fumble recovery. Those are impressive numbers, but Baskeyfield will be facing Brandon Bailey, who has accumulated 1,625 yards rushing and 23 rushing touchdowns. Bailey’s numbers might not be as impressive as other running backs, but considering that he sat the second half of most non-district games, then he could have easily accumulated over 2000 yards. Unless the line can open some holes for Baskeyfield to get into the backfield, then Bailey should be able to pound out 2-3 yards per carry. 2-3 yards per carry will keep the ball in Permian’s possession.
Meanwhile Permian is no slouch on defense. Jeff Cerda has already mentioned how Permian has given up 10 points per game. They’ve given up EXACTLY 100 points in 10 games, 27 of which came against San Angelo Central. Permian’s D is led by OLB Robby Washington who leads the team with five sacks and 62 tackles. CB Des Smith has kept the corners in check with 8 pass breakups and 3 interceptions. They’ll need to stay on top of their game to handle Donoven Davenport (1,221 passing yards with 11 touchdowns and 5 interceptions AND 492 rushing yards with 8 touchdowns) and DeAndre Cook (1,792 yards and 17 touchdowns).
Whichever team can shut down the others running game is going to walk away with the win here. The winner will move on to face the winner of El Paso El Dorado/Amarillo Tascosa. Considering it took Bowie until the final game to clinch a playoff birth and considering that Permian is upset over losing their perfect season, I’m giving a slight edge to the Panthers. PERMIAN 30, BOWIE 20
Anyone can listen to the game online via kicks99.net, as the game will be broadcast by KHKX 99.1 FM. Anyone in the Permian Basin can also watch the game LIVE on KOSA-DT2 (MyTV 16).
MIDLAND HIGH AT ARLINGTON MARTIN
Next lets head to Arlington where Midland High (4-6) will visit Arlington Martin (8-2) in a rematch of last year’s bi-district round.
Midland High comes in with their biggest win of the year having taken place, over crosstown rival Midland Lee. Midland High and Martin basically produce counter styles. Midland High tends to focus on the pass. Martin focuses on the rush. Martin has accumulated 2,986 yards this year on the ground, accounting for 65.7% of their offense. Martin’s two losses came to Dallas Skyline and South Grand Prairie, and both were within a touchdown.
Over at Midland High one only needs to look at the scores to see the Bulldogs have been blown out quite a few times. Injuries were a key factor in that. Early in the year junior receivers Sam Bertleson and Juleion Bowers were slowed by injuries. The two have slowly but surely come back and are now healthy, and it was just in time. In Week 9 the Bulldogs lost senior Courntey McMaryion to an ankle injury. Junior Jalen Childress has stepped up to fill those shoes, pulling in a touchdown in each of the last four games. Bowers, Bertleson, and Childress have each led the team in receiving yardage three of the last four weeks. Needless to say QB Jackson Anuszkiewicz will have plenty of receiving options.
The key to this game will be which line can hold up. The fact that two of Midland High’s receivers have suffered from injuries earlier in this year should come back to haunt them in a game like this. Expect Martin to walk away from UT Arlington with the win, and it should be rather easily done. MARTIN 38, MIDLAND HIGH 10
This game can be heard online either at newstalkkcrs.com (KCRS 550 AM) or at lonestar92.com (KODM 92.3-FM). The winner will face either Amarillo or El Paso Montwood next week.
ABILENE HIGH AT ARLINGTON LAMAR
Now lets stay in Arlington where Abilene High (7-3) has tradition on their side. This will be the fourth meeting between Abilene and Lamar, with Abilene holding a 3-0 advantage, all in the playoffs. Abilene also walks in with the experience, having made the playoffs 16 of the past 17 years. The question will be is tradition all they have against Arlington Lamar (9-1).
Lamar walked away from 4-6A the outright district champs. They walk into this game averaging nearly 408 yards a game (204 both rushing and passing) and averaging nearly 40 points per contest. QB Shane Buechele leads Lamar with 1,857 passing yards and 20 touchdowns, but he is also aided by two 500 yard running backs in Kofi Boateng and Draven Cantly. While Lamar might be a pass focus team, they have combined to rush for 26 rushing touchdowns. The Vikings also walk into the game with a +13 turnover margin.
Abilene High will focus their offense on junior running back Abram Smith. Smith has moved up to fourth in the schools rushing history with 2,890 rushing yards. This will be his first playoff experience after missing the final six games of 2014 with a knee injury. Abilene High is also bringing back defensive starters that have been out most of the year in McKendrie Morrison. Morrison only played two games due to a broken foot, but he led the team in tackles during those two games. Will it be enough though?
Expect a close game throughout. ARLINGTON LAMAR 34, ABILENE HIGH 24
The game can be listened to at tsrnsports.com and radioabilene.com via KZQQ 1560 AM/KKHR 106.3 FM. The winner will face either Wolfforth Frenship or El Paso Eastwood.
ARLINGTON HIGH AT SAN ANGELO CENTRAL
Finally lets head on down to San Angelo. The Central Bobcats (9-1) are riding high after defeating Permian to win a share of the district crown, but they certainly haven’t had their heads in the clouds. Now they will host Arlington High (5-5).
Central comes in with a 15-1 record at San Angelo Stadium over the past three seasons and a 15 game home winning streak.
The two teams come in with fairly even numbers at the QB position. Central’s Brennen Wooten has thrown for 2,873 yards with 28 touchdowns and nine interceptions. Arlington’s Caelean Day has thrown for 2,251 yards and 22 touchdowns with eight interceptions. Arlington averages 40.8 points per game. Central averages 42.8 points per game.
The Colts utilize a two running back system that has tired out many opponents in Alan Braxton (1,128 yards with 18 touchdowns) and Kenland McCray (667 yards and eight touchdowns). Both of these are higher than ANY Central running back this season.
The difference between the two has been defensively, where Arlington has given up 34.4 points a game compared to Central’s 20.9. The difference could also very well be the crowd. San Angelo Stadium holds 17,500 people, not counting the standing room of the end zones. Last week more than 20,000 fans piled in to see the Permian/Central match. If they return for this game, it could very well be a long night for Arlington. CENTRAL 42, ARLINGTON 34
The game can be listened to at kixyfm.com or at portal.stretchinternet.com/foster/. Locally it will be on KIXY 94.7 FM. The winner will face either El Paso Americas or Lubbock Monterey next weekend.