FOOTBALL: New-face Mustangs grind out scrimmage win at PNG
WOS 13, PNG 7
PORT NECHES — A majority of West Orange-Stark’s returning varsity players “rode the bus and watched the game” last season, as coach Cornel Thompson put it, as the Mustangs made their fourth state championship appearance in a row.
The 2018 Mustangs are trying to become the team to watch again in 4A Division II. On Friday night, the newcomers got some invaluable experience against a perennial 5A Division II title chaser.
Junior Tyrone Wilson engineered two scoring drives and led West Orange-Stark to a 13-7 win over Port Neches-Groves in the first of two preseason scrimmages for both teams. His keeper from 12 yards out with 5:22 remaining put the Mustangs ahead for good.
Still, typical for a first scrimmage, Thompson was more worried about what the Mustangs did not accomplish on the field.
“If we look like that next week, I’ll be disturbed, so we gotta get better real quick,” Thompson said, citing “mistakes, excuses and penalties” in general.
Down 6-0, PNG got a big play from University of Texas commit Roschon Johnson. He went 40 yards on a quarterback keeper and scored with 3:43 left in the second period, with Jose Ceja converting the go-ahead extra point.
Interceptions by seniors Kade Martin and Dakota Baxter thwarted otherwise solid West Orange-Stark drives deep into Indian territory.
Wilson had just completed a big strike deep into Indians territory before Baxter’s pick ended a go-ahead threat. Martin intercepted a pass at the PNG 14 to set up the Indians’ first scoring drive.
Johnson played the first half and completed 5 of 8 passes for 91 yards. He connected with Kaleb Wuenschel on a 42-yard strike that led to Johnson’s big TD run.
Wuenschel lost a fumble at the end of a 20-yard completion that set up the Mustangs’ first scoring drive, capped by 3-yard Ja’Vonn Ross carry with 4:05 left in the first quarter.
PNG coach Brandon Faircloth took an extensive look at senior running back Jaylan Williams, who had three carries of 10-plus yards with a long of 15 on his first touch.
The Indians will host West Brook in their final scrimmage next Friday. PNG’s regular season begins Aug. 31 at Silsbee.
West Orange-Stark will host Vidor for its final scrimmage Thursday and begin the season hosting Nederland.
I.C. Murrell: 721-2435. Twitter: @ICMurrellPANews
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