PREVIEW: Jasper + Center Clash for District 9-4A D-II Title
DISTRICT 9-4A Division II
Jasper Bulldogs (9-0, 3-0)
Center Roughriders (6-3, 3-0)
7:30 p.m. Friday
Roughrider Stadium, Center
- Jasper: Darrell Barbay
- Center: Barry Bowman
- Jasper: def. Tarkington, 54-24
- Center: def. Huntington 42-24
- Jasper: vs. TBD, bi-district playoffs
- Center: vs. TBD, bi-district playoffs
Players to watch
- ATH Montavien Hunt, Jr., 5-9 (112 carries, 1,447 yards, 19 TDs)
- LB William Bluitt, Sr., 5-9 (11 carries, 28 yards, 4 TDs; 69 tackles, 7 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 fumble recovery)
- OL/DL Brashaun Hubbard, Jr. (9 carries, 63 yards, 4 TDs; 35 tackles, 12 for loss, 5.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 1 recovery)
- OL Trent Bryant, Sr., 6-2, 250
- QB Colton Womack, 6-5, 190 (55-of-84, 1,117 yards, 14 TDs; 10 carries, -32 yards)
- WR/DB La'Javien Jackson, Sr., 5-11, 155 (14 catches, 237 yards, 4 TDs; 2 fumble recoveries)
- WR Bryce Barbay, Jr., 6-0, 165 (12 catches, 343 yards, 4 TDs; 11 tackles, 1 forced fumble)
- DB Tee Collins, Jr., 6-2 (22 tackles, 2 for loss, 5 INTs, 1 forced fumble, 2 fumble recoveries)
- QB Jayden Hicks, Jr., 5-6, 160 (85-of-159, 1,512 yards, 15 TDs, 3 INTs; 99 carries, 470 yards, 9 TDs)
- RB/DB Marquez Hall, So., 5-7, 148 (46 carries, 376 yards, 5 TDs; 19 catches, 404 yards, 2 TDs; 3 INTs, 15 PBUs)
- LB Katavious Evans, Sr. (59 tackles, 3 for loss, 1 forced fumble)
- OL/DL Logan Holloway, Sr., 6-1, 250 (50 tackles, 10 for loss, 1 sack)
- RB Keamodre Horace, So., 5-10, 183 (76 carries, 802 yards, 10 TDs)
- WR Jakerrion Watson, Jr. (32 catches, 629 yards, 9 TDs; 12 carries, 105 yards, 2 TDs)
Just the facts
- Since 1980, Jasper holds a 5-3 lead in the series. Center won the most recent contest in 2015, 26-23.
- Center is averaging 381.6 yards per game (168 passing and 213.6 rushing).
- Roughriders quarterback Jayden Hicks did not throw an interception through the first eight games. He has a touchdown to interception ratio of 5:1.
- Center running back Keamodre Horace is averaging 10.6 yards per carry.
- Jasper has a chance to finish the regular season undefeated for the first time since 1983.
- Jasper running back Montavien Hunt ranks among the top 10 running backs in East Texas. He is averaging 12.9 yards per carry.
- Jasper's defense is giving up just 10.4 points per contest.
Key matchup: Center passing attack against the Jasper defense. Jasper has been strong on defense this season, giving up just 10.4 points per game. The Bulldogs run into a Center offense has plenty of experience. Jayden Hicks, the quarterback, has remained poised under center thus far. Aside from a hiccup in Week 10, he has thrown no interceptions in 2018. Jakerrion Watson and Marques Hall are the primary targets for Hicks, with Watson the leading receiver.
Jasper's Tee Collins has been a leader in the secondary this season and has five interceptions thus far. The Bulldogs will need him to get between a few passes Friday to quell the Roughrider passing attack. Although the Bulldogs also have the running game of this balanced offense to worry about, forcing a couple of miscues from Hicks would swing their chances of winning in the right direction.
Don't be surprised if: Montavien Hunt has a big game. The Jasper running back has been among the top running backs in East Texas all season. He has been held to just 17 carries in the past three games as the Bulldogs blew out their opponents. The last competitive game on Oct. 5 against West Orange-Stark, Hunt carried the ball 23 times for 360 yards and four touchdowns. To expect a repeat performance is probably a bit much. However, Hunt should certainly see more touches in what projects to be a close game. The increased workload should lead to big numbers for the star back.