By Jay Neal
The Jacksonville Fight'n Indians' 2013 football schedule is just about as good as it gets considering that the Tribe must face the likes of Class 3A perennial powers Carthage, Gilmer and Henderson among their non-district encounters, plus the aways-rigorous adventures of 16-4A football which features Whitehouse (Class 4A, No. 6) and John Tyler (Class 4A, No. 10) for starters.
It’s generally a boost for a team to be able to open a new season at home and that's exactly what the Indians will be doing this fall when they host Class 3-A's top-ranked outfit, Carthage, on August 30.
The Jacksonville boys will be young and green in most positions this year, so playing the opener in front of the home faithful could serve to take some of the edge off when the Tribesmen take on Carthage.
Jacksonville also commences the 16-4A portion of its schedule at Tomato Bowl this season.
The league lid lifter will take place on the 11th day of October when the Dragons of Nacogdoches come calling.
In addition, the Indians will close the regular season out on Nov. 8 by taking on Corsicana in Jacksonville, which could be huge if the district's playoff representatives are still undecided at that time as it is never wise to write off the Tribe's chances when playing at Tomato Bowl.
Another plus is three of the Tribe's five district tilts are scheduled to be played at home – Jacksonville’s other league affair is slated for Oct. 25 when the mighty John Tyler Lions come calling.
Conversely, there is a potentially treacherous portion of the Indians' 2013 docket that is a cause for concern.
Jacksonville will close out non-conference play by visiting Henderson (Sept. 20) and marshall (Sept. 27) in consecutive weeks before enjoying a pre-district bye week.
Although Henderson is expected to be down this year and Marshall was one of East Texas cupcake teams a year ago, neither game should be overlooked.
That's because Henderson is always tough when playing before the Lions' usual rapid sell-out crowd.
As for the Mavericks, Marshall has a brand new coach in Clint Harper and the early reports are that harper and company are working feverishly to return the program to its luster of past years.
Bottom line, Indians can't afford to go into the bye week having suffered a loss to Marshall if they are to enter district play with sufficient momentum.
By Jay Neal
- Local Sports
New Summerfield downs Van, 3-1, to win small school soccer tourney
The book closed on the the first year of New Summerfield High School boy's soccer season on Saturday night, after the Hornets had polished off Van, 3-1, to win the Small School Soccer Championship Tournament, which was played on a rainy Saturday night at Bill McRae Field at Jacksonville College.
The Hornets ended up with a record of 11-5-0.
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Luke Smith turned in a dominating performance in Troup's 10-0 win over Harmony in a District 18-2A affair that was played at the Tigers' ball yard Friday.
Smith pitched a no-hitter against the Eagles and struck out 12 of the 18 opposing batters that he faced.
Priddy Good Stuff: Brook Hill disposes of Class 6-A Lake Hamilton, Ark.
Brook Hill evened its record at 6-6 Saturday afternoon by leveling Lake Hamilton, Ark., a Class 6-A school with an enrollment in excess of 900, 4-1, in final day play of the Longview Lobo Classic Challenge.
Eagle 9 drop decisions to Carthage
Baseball teams from Rusk and Carthage did battle Friday and Saturday by playing a single game in each community.
Unfortunately for the Eagles, the results was the same as the Bulldogs ran their worksheet to 7-6 on the year by beating Rusk 2-0 in Carthage Friday night and 6-0 Saturday afternoon at Eagle Park.
Indian baseball loses twice in Quitman tourney
After starting off the Quitman Tournament with a pair of wins, the Jacksonville baseball Indians' luck changed Friday and Saturday when the Tribe came up short, losing 13-3 to Mount Pleasant Chapel Hill, and tumbling 10-7 to the host Bulldogs from Quitman on Saturday.
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Leo Rosales and Jeremy Turner of Rusk have punched their respective ducats into the upcoming state powerlifting meet.
Crimson Tide's Littlejohn moves to 5-0 with 1st SEC win
Rusk High School product Sydney Littlejohn, a true freshman at the University of Alabama, moved to 5-0 on the year Saturday when she earned her first Southeastern Conference victory of her career.
Prep Soccer: Hawkins boots Brook Hill girls to another state championship
Brook Hill successfully defended its TAPPS DIII girls's soccer state title on Friday by slipping past Austin Vertas 1-0 at Awty International School.
Elise Hawkins was the unlikely hero for the Lady Guard. The senior defender scored what turned out to be the only goal of the match around the 12-minute mark of the final period.
35-4A Soccer: Jacksonville girls down Lady Hornets, 1-0
Jacksonville's Fightin' Maidens collected a District 35-4A triumph Friday night at Tomato Bowl without even scoring a goal.
Yes that's right, because Lufkin Hudson knocked in the only goal of the match — an own goal — with 12:58 to play in the match.
After the Maidens (7-7-2, 6-2-1 District 35-4A) almost scored on their own, the ball deflected a few feet out in front of the Hudson goalkeeper and in the made rush to clear the ball already Hornet accidentally knocked the ball into the Jacksonville goal.
16-3A Softball: Springer fans 13 as Bullard stops Spring Hill, 4-1
Kristie “Coco” Springer, a Texas Woman's University signee, struck out 13 Spring Hill batters Friday night to help propel Bullard to a 4-1 win in a District 16-3A tilt that was played in Longview.
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