Mineral Wells Index
By TONY EIERDAM
Coming off a relatively easy game last week in the bi-district playoffs, the state-ranked No. 12 Strawn Greyhounds have set their sights on the regional round of the six man, Region III, Division II playoffs.
The ‘Hounds (9-2) will face the Jayton Jaybirds, a 72-56 winner last week over Vernon Northside. The winner will take on the winner of the No. 17 Newcastle/Guthrie regional round contest next week in the state quarterfinals.
In a game called at halftime due to the 45-point mercy rule, the ‘Hounds piled up 336 total yards in only 20 minutes of play in their 72-6 victory over Bowie Gold-Burg.
Sophomore running back Coletyn King rushed for 79 yards on just four carries, half of which were touchdowns. King also returned an intercepted a pass for a TD and caught a touchdown pass.
Junior quarterback Harrison Nowak also had an outstanding game by completing four of five passes for 171 yards and four touchdowns. Nowak set the tone early for the Greyhounds’ offense by throwing a TD pass of 46 yards to Abram Jaramillo on the first play of the game.
The ‘Hounds showed great balance on offense with 165 yards on the ground to go with the 171 yards through the air.
Defensively, the lightning-quick Strawn defense limited Gold-Burg to just two first downs and 61 total yards.
Strawn head coach Dewaine Lee said his team is in a different frame of mind at this time of the season.
“The kids have a different mind set at this time of the year,” Lee said. They know they have to get better each week to keep up with the competition.
“The teams we will face will be better each week, and the kids know that means they have to work harder every day in practice.”
Jayton, the runner up from District 9, has compiled a 9-2 record and last lost on Nov. 1 against Guthrie, 52-38. The Jaybirds’ other loss came to Blackwell, 32-14, in the season’s second week.
“Jayton runs a tight formation but they throw the ball half the time,” Lee said. “They do a good job of a 50-50 balance on offense between the pass and run.
“They have a good quarterback who makes good decisions. From what we have seen on film he rarely forces the ball.”
The Greyhounds, however, especially this early in postseason play, are more concerned with how they are playing and what they need to do offensively and defensively to win the game.
The ‘Hounds proved they are capable of also earning points on special teams as placekicker Jacob Trujillo connected on eight PAT kicks to for an additional 16 points on the Strawn side of the scoreboard.
“I like where we are at right now,” Lee said. “We feel we are peeking upward at the right time, and we are fairly healthy.
“The key for us (today) is to control the ball and keep it away from Jayton’s offense. And, of course,we have to take care of the football.
“Turnovers can be the difference in the game.”