PREVIEW: Pittsburg + Pleasant Grove Kick Off District Play
DISTRICT 6-4A Division II
Pittsburg Pirates (4-2, 0-0)
No. 7 Pleasant Grove Hawks (4-2, 0-0)
7:30 p.m. Friday
Hawk Stadium, Texarkana
- Pittsburg: Brad Baca
- Pleasant Grove: Josh Gibson
- Pittsburg: def. Rusk, 53-24
- Pleasant Grove: lost to Carthage, 28-21
- Pittsburg: idle
- Pleasant Grove: at Gilmer, Oct. 19
Players to watch
- WR/S Keontae Burns, Sr., 6-3, 175 (33 catches, 431 yards, 3 TDs; 14 carries, 98 yards, 1 TD; 18 tackles, 4 for loss, 4 PBUs)
- QB/CB Jaylon Jimmerson, Sr., 6-0, 190 (93-of-158, 1,292 yards, 12 TDs, 4 INTs; 80 carries, 566 yards, 8 TDs; 45 tackles, 1 for loss, 5 INTs, 5 PBUs, 1 forced fumble, 1 recovery)
- WR/CB Keithlen Griffin, Sr., 6-0, 160 (27 catches, 431 yards, 5 TDs; 12 tackles, 1 INT, 5 PBUs, 1 fumble recovery)
- RB/DE Desmond Allen, Sr., 5-10, 210 (47carries, 198 yards, 3 TDs)
- LB Camryn Edney, Sr., 6-0, 208 (78 tackles, 13 for loss, 3 sacks, 4 QB pressures, 3 forced fumbles, 1 recovery)
- LB Mason Monts, Jr., 5-10, 175 (69 tackles, 6 for loss, 6 QB pressures, 3 forced fumbles)
- RB/LB Antwon Robertson (38 carries, 198 yards, 1 TD; 29 tackles, 4 for loss, 3 sacks, 10 QB pressures, 1 forced fumble)
- DT Undra Bates, Jr. (20 tackles, 2 for loss, 1 sack, 8 QB pressures)
- WR Promous Morrison, Jr., 5-9, 176 (17 catches, 205 yards, 1 TD)
- DE Landon Jackson, Soph., 6-5, 222 (40 tackles, 8 for loss, 2 sacks, 18 QB pressures, 3 forced fumbles)
- DT Marcus Burris, Soph., 6-4, 240 (24 tackles, 3 QB pressure, 1 forced fumble)
- QB Ben Harmon, Jr, 6-1, 185 (35-of-67, 754 yards, 9 TDs, 1 INT; 36 carries, 186 yards, 5 TDs)
- RB Bruce Garrett, Jr., 5-11, 187 (82 carries, 634 yards, 5 TDs)
- WR Jackson Cobb, Jr., 5-10, 155 (15 catches, 273 yards, 2 TDs; 6 carries, 14 yards)
- DB Kam Woods, Sr., 6-3, 170 (21 tackles, 4 INTs, 14 PBUs)
- RB James Wiggins, Sr. (86 carries, 599 yards, 6 TDs)
- LB Bladen Reaves, Sr., 6-0, 195 (50 tackles, 3 for loss, 3.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble)
- LB Nick Martin, Soph., 6-0, 178 (38 tackles, 2.5 for loss, 3.5 sacks, 2 QB pressures)
Just the facts
- Pittsburg and Pleasant Grove are tied 9-9 in the series.
- The Pirates are averaging 407 yards per game (214.3 passing and 192.7 rushing).
- Pittsburg receivers Keontae Burns and Keithlen Griffin have combined for 862 yards receiving and eight touchdowns.
- Pirate defensive back Jaylon Jimmerson is tied for the area lead with five interceptions.
- Pleasant Grove is averaging 426.5 yards per game (299.5 rushing and 127 passing).
- Hawks defensive end Landon Jackson's three forced fumbles are tied for the second-most in East Texas.
- Pleasant Grove won its first state championship in 2017.
Key matchup: Ben Harmon and the passing attack against the Pittsburg secondary. Pleasant Grove runs the ball a lot out of its Wing T offense. However, the Hawks have still found a way to be productive passing as well. That's thanks in large part to the talent of quarterback Ben Harmon, who has thrown for 754 yards and nine touchdowns so far. He's also careful with the football, throwing only one interception through six games.
Pittsburg has one of the better secondaries in East Texas. Jaylon Jimmerson has proven himself as a lockdown defender, with five interceptions this season. Keontae Burns has the talent to play defense in college, and will attend SMU next fall. Keithlen Griffin shouldn't be forgotten either.
Pleasant Grove's running game should be there as always. If its passing attack can survive the test, the Hawks will likely bounce back from a tough week and earn a victory in what looks to be a competitive district.
Don't be surprised if: Burns or Griffin surpass 100 yards receiving. There should be plenty of opportunities for Pittsburg to pass in what projects to be a close game. Burns has already had two game of 100 or more yards this season, while Griffin has yet to do so but come close several times. Both are tied for the team lead in receiving with 431 yards.
Jimmerson has done a good job leading the Pirates offense this season. His two favorite targets should get plenty of love Friday night.