Pine Tree Takes Two-Game Win Streak into District 14-4A Opener at Texas High
Pine Tree Pirates (2-2)
Texas High Tigers (1-3)
7:30 p.m. Friday
Tiger Stadium at Grim Park, Texarkana
Pine Tree: Derek Fitzhenry
Texas High: Barry Norton
Pine Tree: def. Nacogdoches, 28-21
Texas High: idle
Pine Tree: vs. Hallsville
Texas High: at Sulphur Springs
- QB Jake Oden, Sr., 6-1, 175 (30 of 57, 579 yards, 5 TDs, 1 INT; 35 carries, 370 yards, 4 TDs)
- RB Victor Hawkins, Sr., 6-1, 185 (21 carries, 279 yards, 2 TDs; 10 catches, 94 yards, 2 TDs)
- S Tre Devine, Jr., 5-11, 170 (33 tackles, 2 INTs, 1 forced fumble)
- FB/DT Eddie Calico, Sr., 5-11, 230 (27 carries, 108 yards; 9 tackles, 1 sack, 1 INT, 1 fumble recovery)
- LB Jarvis Wall, Jr. (33 tackles)
- DB Evan Estes, Jr., 5-11, 175 (36 tackles)
- WR Mason Hayes, Soph., 6-1, 175 (6 catches, 180 yards, 2 TDs)
- FB Quay Ward, Soph. 5-8, 185 (35 carries, 157 yards)
- RB Treveon Walker (59 carries, 367 yards, 1 TD; 21 catches, 230 yards, 2 TDs)
- QB Clete Norton (41 of 85, 430 yards, 3 TDs, 4 INTs)
- DT Jonathan Hunt, Sr., 6-0, 285
- LB Anthony Rhone, Jr., 6-0, 205
- WR Jarion Anderson (13 catches, 137 yards)
Just the facts
- Pine Tree averages 25.0 points per game and allows 31.3.
- Texas High averages 10.0 points per game and allows 27.0.
- Pine Tree has won two games in a row entering Friday’s game.
- Both of Pine Tree’s wins have come by a 28-21 score.
- Texas High has lost three games in a row.
- The Tigers have been outscored 101-27 during their three-game losing streak.
- Texas High owns a 14-4-1 advantage vs. Pine Tree since 1978.
- Texas High has beaten Pine Tree five times in a row.
- Pine Tree’s last win vs. Texas High was a 20-19 non-district win in 1995.
Key matchup: Texas High’s front seven vs. Pine Tree’s running game. Pine Tree has balanced its offense much more this season, particularly in the past two games, both of which the Pirates won. In a 28-21 win against Lindale, Pine Tree gained 400 yards with 152 pass and 248 rush. In last week’s 28-21 victory vs. Nacogdoches, PT had 363 yards, including 125 pass and 238 rush. Obviously, Pine Tree’s offense still starts with the run, and Texas High must be prepared to defend the flexbone action the Pirates will show. Having a stalwart defensive tackle such as the one the Tigers have — senior Jonathan Hunt — is a great start. But as the Pirates have shown, their play-action passing game has kept opponents honest and forced foes to defend more than just the run. Pine Tree must do that if the Bucs hope to keep their winning streak alive.
Don’t be surprised if: This game is much closer than anyone would have expected before the season started. Pine Tree has proven that it can score points, accumulating 28 in three separate games. But the defense isn’t always there for the Pirates, who allowed 83 points in their first two games of the season. On the other sideline is a Texas High team that has held 3 of 4 opponents to 24 or fewer points, but has yet to score more than 13 points in a game. Entering the 2012 campaign, nobody would’ve thought that Pine Tree could hang around with Texas High, which has been one of the most successful programs in East Texas during the last decade. The Tigers are always talented, but a lack of experience on both sides of the ball could be catching up with them this season. Texas High does have one of the best home-field advantages in East Texas on its side in this matchup, as well as the psychological edge of having dominated this series during the last 30 years. But this doesn’t appear to be the usual Texas High team, and Pine Tree could be bringing momentum into this matchup that it’s not accustomed to having. That said, Texas High’s schedule has been significantly more challenging than Pine Tree’s, including losses to perennial Louisiana power Shreveport Evangel Christian Academy and Class 5A Tyler Lee. But this could end up being a closer game than anyone could’ve expected.