FanFare 2018 - Page 50

Mark it down If the coaches can develop the talent at the skill positions, the Bobcats could see an impressive year as they face seven teams who were under ,500 last year. 2017 RECORD 1-9 (5th, District 10-2A) Bobcats stressing belief in the system change in the system is coming for the Cross Roads Bobcats in the second year under coach Daniel Pierce. Even with the change to the Wing T on offense and the 3-4 defense, Pierce said the main emphasis is believing in what was developed last year. “What we have to do differently this year is to believe in the system that we started last year,” Pierce said. “Last year was a tough district, and this year is a tough district. It sounds like we are losing a lot of kids due to graduation, but we still have a lot of youth coming up that will help us. We will have some experi- ence coming back that will give us a good chance.” The top role for the Bob cats will come from senior quarterback, running back and linebacker Karson Fletcher. He takes over the spot left by Jordan Trammell, who graduated in the spring. “Karson is going to take over that role. He is one of those guys who is a very good leader for us,” the coach said. “He is a well-rounded athlete, so we feel like he can lead the team in the right direction for everything we are putting in this year. He will be that type of guy that Brandon A was. He led the team last year in sacks and was right up there in tackles for us.” His backfield mates will be jun- iors Eli Wilson and Alex Marsten Head Coach and sophomore Daniel Joshua Grey. Pierce Junior Blaine Hendry is also penciled in at running back. “We are looking at some of the guys to produce in the backfield,” Pierce said. “Those guys are expected to put up a good year to help us in the backfield. I think our big strength this year is going to be our offensive line. Those guys have been together for two years and going on “Our kids have a never back down attitude, and the teams we are facing all look competi- tive to us.” – Daniel Pierce Senior spotlight Senior Garrett Martin is a player coach Daniel Pierce believes is a player to watch. The offensive and defensive specialist returns to help a Martin young group in help- ing quarterback Karson Fletcher under center. He will be the main player to see as a target along with junior running backs Eli Wilson, Blaine Hendry and Alex Marsten and sophomore Josh Grey. 50 year three. We only lost one lineman from last year, so all four of them have played for three years. That will be a big comfort for our team.” Pierce said he and defensive coordina- tor Evan Harrison have worked with the athletes to learn the ways of the Wing-T offense and defensive systems. “The first part of two-a-days had us fo- cusing on learning the key points of the new stuff,” he said. “We are trying to master those pieces of the puzzle and build on those as the year goes on.” No. 9-ranked Centerville joins District 9-2A this year as the perennial favorite for the district title. He knows the Tigers will be a team to watch. “Centerville is picked to go very far. In fact, I saw them going as far as the state semifinal,” he said. “They are a tough team, and have lost quite a bit of seniors. Kerens is another team that we have been dealing with for years. This year could be different as far as experience levels on both sides. I am still learning about Normangee and Leon, and Cayuga is returning a lot of players.” Cross Roads opens the year on the road at Blooming Grove Aug. 31. They will then travel to Axtell in Week 2. Did you know? 2018 Schedule DATE OPPONENT TIME 2017 RESULT Aug. 31 Sept. 7 Sept. 14 Sept. 21 Sept. 28 Oct. 12 Oct. 19 Oct. 26 Nov. 2 Nov. 9 at B. Grove (4-6) at Axtell (3-7) Hubbard (4-7) Frost (7-4) at Wortham (4-6) Kerens (7-5)* at Centerville (10-4)* Leon (2-8)* at Normangee (2-8)* Cayuga (1-9)* 7:30 7:30 7:30 7:30 7:30 7:30 7:30 7:30 7:30 7:30 DNP DNP DNP L 42-18 DNP L 47-0 DNP DNP DNP W 18-12 Bold denotes homecoming game/* district game/ Opponent is listed with its 2017 overall season record RETURNING STARTERS: 11 (5/6) RETURNING LETTERMEN: 12 • The 18-12 victory over Cayuga was the first win in the last 20 games for the Bobcats. The two teams met again in the season finale Nov. 9. • The Bobcats will face seven new teams with the first three against Blooming Grove, Axtell and Hubbard. • The Bobcats are looking to make the playoffs for the first time since the 2003 season, which was the last win- ning season for them at 6-5 overall. • Cross Roads faces only three teams with a winning record last year. Centerville won 10 games in 2017.