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Sabine Pass gains more players, will kick off Oct. 9

The Sabine Pass football team will begin its season Oct. 9 at home against Burkeville, head coach Jason Thibodeaux said Friday. The team did not have enough players prior to Wednesday.

The Sharks gained four players over the past couple of weeks, bringing the roster’s total to 16. Thibodeaux previously told Port Arthur Newsmedia he wanted approximately 15 players to field a team.

“My plan had been to start school and see from there,” he said. “We had no spikes in COVID and our parents feel comfortable that we have a pretty good plan to keep our kids safe. That was our goal and we reached our goal.”

The Sharks missed the first two games of the season against Colmesneil and Acadian Home School.

Thibodeaux said he did not want to miss any district games. The Oct. 9 matchup is the Sharks’ first District 12-2A Division II game on their schedule.

Kickoff of that game is set for 7 p.m.

“On Wednesday, we were remote because of the storm,” Thibodeaux said. “With social media and everything, the guys had already told each other before I could tell them on Thursday. They were tickled to death to hear the news from me or from them.”

Thibodeaux said the news has had a positive impact on Thursday and Friday’s practices.

“The excitement is 100 percent more than what it has been,” he said. “The look in their eyes is totally different. They are actually enjoying practice now, because they know we are fixing to pad up on Friday night.”

While the Sharks will not have any preseason games to help prepare for district, Thibodeaux said he believes his team will be ready.

“Our kids are so hungry to play,” he said. “We are going to go out there and play like we had five preseason games.”

Two years ago, the Sharks had to cancel their season after a string of injuries thinned their roster.

“This staff was with me two years ago,” Thibodeaux said. “They didn’t like that we had to cancel. That was something we didn’t want to do, and I was going to see that we weren’t going to do.”