ENID, Okla. — Growing pains for Wildcats
The education of a young Covington-Douglas team continues Friday when the Wildcats visit Pond Creek-Hunter, ranked No. 2 in Class B.
Covington-Douglas, which returned only one starter, was schooled by Class C Coyle 40-0 in its opener. It was the first time the Wildcats had ever lost to the Bluejackets.
“The mistakes a young team makes are different from a veteran team,’’ said Wildcats coach Brian Smith. “It may be being slow to getting a read, or slow to getting to the ball or not tackling well. These things come with age.’’
A proven senior can make up for a mistake with a big play immediately. Not so much with younger players.
“We saw some positive things,’’ Smith said. “We just had a hard time putting multiple positives together. A breakdown here and there can lead to big plays.”
Smith said Coyle’s speed led to some of those mistakes. Pond Creek-Hunter can match the Bluejackets’ speed and are much more physical.
“They looked good on film (in a 56-6 win over DCLA last week),’’ Smith said. “They look even better in person.’’
The Panthers rushed for 272 yards and threw for another 69. Quarterback Josh Irvin threw for two scores and ran for another. Fullback Trent Grimes and tailback Harley Comeau might be the area’s best running back combo. Zach Rayner is a dangerous receiver.
Pond Creek-Hunter had 427 yards in total offense in a 38-16 win last season.
“We’re a lot more concerned about ourselves right now,’’ Smith said. “We’re trying to fix the mistakes that are correctable, and trying to get better every day. We need to do the good things play-by-play, not just when it’s convenient.’’
Smith said the team remains upbeat.
“We had a great practice Monday,’’ he said. “We had a great film session. We realized we played a good team Friday and we have another one on the horizon. I need to get better calling offenses ... sometimes with a young team, you try to do too much. These kids play hard and they are excited to be around.’’
Pond Creek-Hunter leads the eight-man series 17-8. The Wildcats have won three of the last four meetings.