AREA HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL NOTEBOOK: Monahans remains perfect in early part of the season

Fellows gets first win at Kermit

Two games in, two consecutive victories for the Monahans football team in the 2023 season.

It’s a far cry from last year in which the Loboes began the season 0-3 before winning 10 in a row and a district championship.

Monahans was given a slightly tougher test last week as they knocked off Permian Basin rivals Andrews 49-27 at Mustang Bowl.

“It feels great,” Monahans head coach Fred Staugh said. “It feels way better to be 2-0. … I would rather get off to this kind of start than our 0-3 start last year.”

The Loboes (2-0) had no trouble against Shallowater in their season opener two weeks ago, winning 48-7.

The Mustangs (1-1), who are playing a new Slot-T style offense this year, managed to give the Loboes some fits on defense.

Last week, Staugh said it was going to be a challenge going against the Slot-T since it’s a formation they don’t see every day but was pleased with how his offense responded.

“It’s tough,” Staugh said of Andrews’ offense. “It’s tough that you don’t see it. It’s tough that they have a really good running back. They scored some touchdowns on us but fortunately, we had the ball quite a bit and scored too and got the win.”

One thing that stood out for the Loboes was the ability to run the ball against the Mustangs’ defense last week.

“I think our kids played their tails off,” Staugh said. “It ended up being a tough game. Our kids got after it and found a way to win. We ran the ball really well after we had thrown the ball the week before. Hopefully, this team has the mentality of doing whatever it takes to win.” “It’s tough. It’s tough that you don’t see it. It’s tough that they have a really good running back. They scored some touchdowns on us but fortunately, we had the ball quite a bit and scored, too, and got the win.”

It’s a start to the season that the Loboes were hoping for as they come back with numerous players from last year’s regional final team and are trying to make another postseason and district title run, with a bull target on their backs now.

“Our kids are tough,” Staugh said. “They work hard. They’re coachable. I thought they stayed poised early on when the game was close and found a way to win and did what they needed to do.”

Now, Monahans will be turning its attention to Big Spring (1-1) in a 7 p.m. contest this Friday at home.

The Steers began the season with a 35-25 loss to Pampa on the road before recovering in the form of a 32-21 win at Lubbock High last Thursday.

“They’re athletic,” Staugh said. “They like to throw the ball around. It’s going to be two spread offenses going against each other. We’re going to have to play well and get after it. We have a 1-0 mentality and we want to be 1-0 again after this Friday.”

>> FIRST WIN: First-year Kermit head coach John Fellows got his first victory with the Yellow Jackets last week in the team’s 38-36 win over Crane (1-1) last Friday at Walton Stadium.

“It always feels good to get in the win column,” Fellows said. “It was good seeing all the smiles on the kids’ faces. Coaches were happy and the town was happy. It was a good day.”

For the Yellow Jackets’ offense, it was a night-and-day difference from their season opener in which they lost to Miles 72-12.

“Our quarterback Mauricio Perez had a good game,” Fellows said. “He came out of his shell a little bit. He got the offense going well. … Defensively, we were able to keep them in check for the most part. It’s just like with anything else. It’s tough to stay disciplined. We got a little tired and let them back in it and took the lead from us. … I was glad we were able to finish it up and our kids know we can come back now.”

Kermit (1-1) will next face Coahoma (1-1) at 7 p.m. Friday on the road.

The Golden Cranes will be at home against Reagan County (1-1) in a 7:30 p.m. contest at El Ave Stadium.

>> IMPROVING: While Compass Academy (0-2) was once again on the wrong side of last Friday’s 27-24 contest against San Angelo TLCA (1-1), head coach Floyd White saw some promising signs from his team.

It was a step in the right direction for the Cougars who were coming off a 35-0 loss to Sterling City the week before.

“When we left the Sterling City game, we knew there were things we had to fix,” White said. “Our big goal for the week was to make sure that we were doing what we needed to do and to make sure that we were improving. While we didn’t get the result we wanted, the overall process is working. We challenged the kids to get after it. While we didn’t like the outcome, the process is working.”

White pointed to his offensive line as one of the biggest signs of improvement in last week’s contest.

“Our offensive line was dominant all night, with the exception of a play or two,” White said. “We controlled the line of scrimmage. We did a lot of good things, offensively. We had some mistakes in the special teams area. All in all, with our kids, we got the improvement that we needed up front.”

Last Friday’s game was the Cougars’ first at Ratliff Stadium for this season.

“For myself, it’s one of those things that I’ve gotten to experience a couple of times but not everyone on this team has gotten to experience it,” White said. “For the players, it’s such a cool thing to watch and see their eyes light up when they get out on the field because it’s one of the best places to play in the country.”

Compass Academy will be back at Ratliff Stadium on Sept. 22 against Alpine.

The Cougars will next face Iraan (2-0) at 7:30 p.m. this Friday on the road.

The Braves are coming off a 41-18 win over Center Point from last week. Iraan’s other win was a 38-0 victory over La Pryor.

“They’re a great team,” White said. “They run the ball really well. … We need to continue to do what we need to do to get the outcome that we want. We have to go out there and dominate up front. We have to make sure we contain their quarterback. They’re running the ball well so our defense has to control the run game. It’ll be a challenge but we look forward to it.”

>> MIDLAND: The Midland Legacy Rebels had no trouble in putting away Amarillo Tascosa (1-1) in a 63-34 nondistrict win last Friday at Astound Broadband Stadium.

The Rebels now sit at 2-0 for the season and will be at undefeated Abilene High (2-0) at 7 p.m. Friday at Shotwell Stadium.

The Eagles began the season with a 49-14 win over Permian at Ratliff Stadium before putting away rivals Abilene Cooper 26-7 last week.

The Bulldogs also remain undefeated early in the season at 2-0 after knocking off Lubbock Coronado 48-13 last week on the road.

Midland High will next make the four-hour trip north on I-27 to Amarillo High (1-1) at 7 p.m. Friday at Dick Bivins Stadium.