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PRUETT COLUMN: Another ‘Halftime’ high school report

This past Friday we published a special section called “Halftime”, and it was really a great publication designed by sports editor I.C. Murrell. It gave local football fans a look into what teams are doing through the first half of the season.

The articles were on the story level, and today I thought I would follow the section up with my opinion on the teams at this point in the year.

PORT ARTHUR MEMORIAL
I tweeted at some point Friday night “If you didn’t know, @_KCINCO (Kary Vincent Jr.) is the best player in SE Texas. 5 INTs in last 4 games, 2 pick 6 in first qtr tonight. Wow.”

Truer words have never been tweeted.

To add to the tweet and to make an obvious point, Vincent is a part of a Titans team that is very good. This team is built on speed, of course, but they are more than just quick.

The Titans are physical and play with an edge that has probably not been seen since the 2011 season. They know they are a good football team and they are playing like it.

Kenny Harrison is fired up this season unlike I have seen in my four years here at The News. I would guess the Titans, if still playing in District 21-6A with the same teams as last year, would finish in at least second behind North Shore.

The Titans are that good. Memorial should finish near the top of District 22-5A and I predicted them before the season to win the championship.

If this happens, it will be a very interesting game if the Titans meet up with Manvel in the second round of the playoffs.

This isn’t track season, but I know Vincent and De’Andre Angelle love facing the Mavericks in any sport. (I still cannot believe those two schools have such a wonderful rivalry in track.)

NEDERLAND

I still say, do not count the Bulldogs out just yet, no matter how things seem to be going for coach Larry Neumann.

This seems like one of those seasons nothing goes right for a team. There have been injuries, distractions and more injuries. If the Bulldogs are forced to forfeit the win against Livingston, Nederland is 1-3 in the District 22-5A standings.

The Bulldogs would not be out just yet. Nederland has winnable games against Central and Ozen before an off week on Oct. 21. The Bulldogs then face Lumberton and ends the season at Port Neches-Groves on Nov. 4 in the Bum Phillips Bowl.

Can you imagine if the Bulldogs’ playoff lives come down to beating the Indians? Talk about intense stuff right there.

Nederland can figure this out, thanks to the leadership of the players and a very seasoned coaching staff. The talent is there on the field and I want to give special props to a couple of Bulldogs defenders.

Tiren Forney, Landon Hiltz and Randy Wistner are playing excellent football this year. They seem to always be around the ball making plays.

Like I said to start this off, do not count out the Bulldogs just yet. There is still a lot of football left to be played.

PORT NECHES-GROVES
If anyone is going to knock off the Titans, it could be the Indians. It will be tough and will take the best game PNG has played this season, but the Indians have the team to do it.

PNG is so balanced at every level on both sides of the ball. The Indians can both run and throw on offense. PNG can also stop the run and stop the pass on defense.

The Indians hit very hard on defense with linebackers Logan LeJeune and Cole Robinson leading the way. I think linebacker Alec LeBouef is very underrated.

Zachary Murdock leads the offensive line which to me is also very underrated. The line, coached by Zach Bass and Peter Medlock, does a great job giving younger quarterback Roschon Johnson time to make great decisions.

PNG has two tough games in a row starting with Vidor at home this week before traveling to face Memorial the following week.

These two games show just how close the Indians can get to clinching a second consecutive district title.
Thanks for reading each week. We appreciate our readers very much.

Gabriel Pruett: 721-2436. Twitter: @PaNewsGabe

About Gabriel Pruett

Gabriel Pruett has worked with both the Port Arthur News and Orange Leader since 2000. A majority of the time has been spent covering all aspects of Southeast Texas high school sports. Pruett's claim to fame is...being able to write his own biographical information for this website.

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