BY STEPHANIE KUZYDYM, Staff Writer, firstname.lastname@example.org
Fox senior Taylor Townsend is strongly supported at quarterback and defensive back.
That, according to Fox coach Brent Phelps, is why Townsend and the Foxes are so successful.
“They are supportive,” Phelps said. “That's what makes things click.”
That clicking allowed Townsend to run for 1,283 yards and throw for 2,377 yards last season. The quarterback went 111-for-203, including 37 touchdowns. That's just offensively. As a safety, Townsend amassed 56 tackles and six interceptions.
“He throws well, runs well,” Phelps said. “He adapts. He's very coachable. But his line last season also blocked real well in front of him, and the receivers did a good job of catching. The team aspect makes you better all the way around.”
ALEX RETURNS ALL BUT THREE
Alex football graduated just three players off a 9-2 team.
Coach Matt Brand and the Longhorns return 14 seniors this season. The offensive and defensive lines will be the Longhorns strength, especially with standout nose guard/defensive end Devin Thornburg, a 6-foot-2, 250-pound senior.
“He's really our anchor on both sides of the ball,” Brand said. “He has a great work ethic. He absolutely never stops working.”
PAOLI'S CENTERS TEAM AROUND SENIORS
Six seniors, who cover every aspect of the field, will be the nucleus of Paoli's 2013 team.
Paoli coach Vince Fulks said the Pugs' strengths are experience and the run game.
It starts with running back Joe Gibson, a 2,800-yard career rusher. Then there's quarterback DJ Moore, whose strong arm will direct him through his second year as a starter. Three-year starting linebacker Tre Robertson amassed 100 tackles last year; he averaged 39 yards per punt.
Hunter Blackwood, another linebacker, registered more than 100 tackles last season, while defensive back Will Stewart led the secondary in tackles.
Round it all out with Sergio Borja, a kicker with a strong, accurate leg, and the nucleus is covered.
HUNTER DOWNS: CYRIL'S MAIN WEAPON
Last season, Hunter Downs was just a sophomore at Cyril.
That didn't stop him from running for more than 1,500 yards or amassing 30 touchdowns. The 5-10, 155-pounder is also a safety.
Pirates coach Josh O'Brien said Downs has a “great instinct running the football” and a “good, hard work ethic.”
CENTRAL MARLOW'S SENIOR STRENGTH
Central Marlow will depend on its four top players, all seniors.
There's running back and defensive back Kevin Harris, a senior, who rushed for 1,791 yards on 213 carries last season. There's also wide receiver and defensive back John Repp, who had eight receptions for 232 yards. Deekota Williams, a linebacker and running back, amassed 62 tackles last season, while quarterback and defensive end Kade Taylor went 18-of-30 for 360 yards last season.
WAURIKA'S STRONG TRIO
Waurika's 2013 team is young. Lots of freshman and sophomores, according to Waurika coach Glenn Howard.
So young, that Howard wasn't sure if he can name the Eagles' strengths just yet. He knows he has a strong backfield, but it's not deep.
Regardless, here's what makes that backfield go:
Quarterback Blaine Shockley, Jr., 5-8, 170. “He's thrown for over 3,500 yards in his first three years. He's been starting since he was a freshman,” Howard said.
Tailback Danny Ralls, Sr., 5-10, 215. “He's a strong runner with good speed. He catches the ball real well.”
Wide receiver Garrett Bachand, Sr., 6-4, 185. “He's one of our team leaders. He's our primary receiver, and our second-leading receiver last year. He also plays defensive end.”
Oklahoma Christian Academy looks for senior leadership this season, especially from four-year, two-way starter Josh Easter. He is a 5-9, 175- pound running back/defensive back.
Allen running back Colton Browning broke on to the high school football scene by rushing for 1,000 yards as a freshman. The now-sophomore will have help from new quarterback, Justin Deaton, who will also play defensive end. The 6-1, 175-pound junior registered 11 sacks in eight games last season.
District B-2 coaches' poll
1. Fox (12-1)
2. Alex (9-2)
3. Central Marlow (7-4)
4. Paoli (6-5)
5. Cyril (6-4)
6. Waurika (4-6)
7. Allen (2-8)
8. Oklahoma Christian Academy (4-6)
9. Geary (1-9)
10. Macomb (0-10)