WILLS POINT TIGERS
VS.
PITTSBURG PIRATES

11 a.m. Saturday
TMF Rose Stadium, Tyler

Coaches
Wills Point: Kevin Garvin
Pittsburg: Robert Manley

Next week
Wills Point: at Mabank
Pittsburg: at Gladewater

Playmakers
Wills Point

  • RB Jaquaveon Maxie, Sr.
  • QB Tre' Smith, Jr.
  • QB/DB Jah Golden, Soph.
  • LB Elijah Roberson, Sr.
  • DB Connor Mitchell, Sr.
  • OL John Brown, Sr.

Pittsburg

  • RT Brian Taylor, Sr, 6-3, 270 (committed to SMU)
  • LT Shawn Albright, Sr., 6-4, 240
  • WR Ty Hammonds, Sr., 6-4, 195
  • RB/LB Derek Allen, Sr., 5-10, 180
  • RB/LB Colton Searcy, Sr., 6-1, 185
  • OLB Carl Leonard, Sr., 5-9, 165

Just the facts

  • Since 2005, the Wills Point Tigers have been the to the playoffs every other year. The Tigers reached the playoffs last season, so Wills Point is hoping to buck that trend in 2012.
  • Wills Point struggled on offense a season ago, averaging just 22 points per game. The defense, meanwhile, gave up right at 24 points on average.
  • The Tigers are young on offense, but do return Maxie who ran for 548 yards and five touchdowns as a junior, averaging 8.7 yards per attempt.
  • Pittsburg is relishing the opportunities awaiting the Pirates in the new district after spending the last two seasons in the "District of Doom." Over the last two seasons, Pittsburg is just 11-9 with no playoff appearances. The year before, the Pirates went 12-2 and advanced to the state semifinals.
  • The Pirates move forward at quarterback with junior Garrett Truitt (6-5, 185).
  • Hammonds will be provide the new QB with a big target. He finished with 22 catches for 243 yards and two TDs as a junior.

Key matchup:

Don't be surprised if: Pittsburg relies heavily on the run in the season opener. The Pirates are big and physical up front, which could lead to the wearing down of Wills Point's defense in the second half. Success on the ground could open big plays for the Pirates in the passing game. Wills Point, with its struggles on offense in 2011, can't afford to fall too far behind early.