Memories of Frost’s near comeback victory over Tenaha in the regional finals last year tend to focus on an offense that executed to near perfection in the second half, until the last play of the game.
The Polar Bears’ defense gets lost, even though Tenaha scored only one touchdown after halftime.
Frost’s defense will get noticed in 2013. The Polar Bears’ defense will be the team’s calling card with seven starters back, including leading tacklers Colton Clayton and Woody Woods, who both play linebacker.
“Honestly our defense is dominant this season,” Woods said. “We get around the ball. We swarm the ball.”
That’s what the Polar Bears did in that gallant effort against Tenaha, and seniors such as Woods, Clayton and Robert Worley plan on that carrying over. Frost trailed 20-0 in the first half of the game with Tenaha’s offense making big plays in the passing game.
But Frost stayed in the game mentally because the Polar Bears kept hitting on defense, led by Woods, who refused to back down. His teammates followed. Frost eventually took a 30-26 lead before Tenaha responded to take a 34-30 advantage. The Polar Bears’ season ended on the Tigers 2-yard line when Frost fumbled on the last play of the game.
Yes, the loss still hurts. But it taught the Bears a valuable lesson.
“We don’t every quit,” Woods said. “It’s going to make you better. Losing definitely makes you want to win. We have that game on our mind every day we go out to the practice field. It’s a heartbreaker.”
That’s where defense comes in. The Bears want to set the tone on defense,” creating chaos,” as Clayton put it. Both Clayton and Woods play on offense, but defense is their real love. Clayton led Frost with 88 tackles. Woods had 82.
They expect with experience to be improved on that side of the ball.
“We will definitely be better,” Clayton said. “The experience, swarming to the ball. It’s an extra push for us to be a championship defense.”
The Polar Bears’ goal is to hold opponents to 14 points or less per game.” If you can do that, you can control the ball game,” Woods said.
That’s what Frost did last year in district play. The Polar Bears lost to Hubbard 44-27 in district play — giving up 32 points in the second half — and played near perfect defense against the other three district opponents.
Dawson’s only touchdown came on a kick return. Wortham scored on its first drive and that was it. Meridian scored once, too.
Was Frost’s defense underrated last season?
“A lot of times it was,” Frost coach Eric Blenden said.”We gave up two touchdowns in district last season minus the Hubbard game. Scoring 49 points a game is great, but it does no good if you’re losing 51-49. And a lot of teams these days try to win that way.”
Blenden looks to Woods and Clayton to set the example on defense. They are his best tacklers, he said. That has come from hard work.
“We always work on tackling every practice,” Clayton said. “Woody and I work on setting the tempo.”
The Polar Bears do three or four tackling drills a practice, Woods said.
“We always want to secure the tackle first,” Woods said. ”Then we go for the ball and get nasty.”
Now that Danial Steels has taken his 1,800 rushing yards to college, and quarterback Jacob Stroder is gone, the Bears figure to take time getting into the flow on offense.
That’s where the defense comes in.
“Our offense isn’t as good,” Woods said. “It’s still good. But we have to come out in our first scrimmage and dominate games on defense.”
GC Football: Two-a-days: Back to Action
When the sun comes up Monday morning it's not just the dawn of a new day, but the dawn of a new season — it's the beginning of two-a-days.
Eight of the nine schools in the Golden Circle will begin football practice Monday while Corsicana waits until Aug. 8 to start. The Tigers begin a week later because they held spring practice.
For last year's playoff teams such as Mildred, Blooming Grove, Kerens, Frost and Hubbard Monday begins a road back to the postseason and for everyone else its the start of a new march. For everyone, it's the most optimistic day of the year.
Morgan: ESPN was wrong in suspending Smith
I won’t be watching ESPN this coming week. For a network that has been made into an empire by covering baseballs, footballs, basketballs, golf balls, soccer balls, tennis balls (I’ve never watched hockey, but I understand they have no balls), this network is much like hockey. They lack the things they are covering.
GC Volleyball Summer Tour:The tradition is back at Kerens
Breanna Baxter is back.
That's bad news for anyone facing the Kerens volleyball team this year.
But there is so much more than Baxter, an all-state player in volleyball, basketball and track & field who was the Golden Circle Female Athlete of the Year in 2014.
TTBBA: Mildred 14U repeats as state champs
The Mildred Eagles completed their season by winning back to back 14U TTBA state titles. The Eagles went 18-0 and captured the title in Hillsboro, where they won five games.
GC Volleyball Summer Tour: Dawson eyes playoffs
Nothing feels the same at Dawson.
It's not only a new season in a new district but second-year Coach Alica Sexton enters the year after having a full season with her kids — a season that revamped the program at Dawson, where they hadn't won in years.
Navarro Football: Nothing changes for success-minded Bulldogs
It didn't take long for Navarro football Coach Brian Mayper to deliver his preseason message at the SWJCFC Media Day Thursday.
“No surprises at Navarro,'' said Mayper, the first of the seven conference coaches to speak to the media. “We're running the same stuff. You guys know we're going to run the ball. And thank God, we're not changes defenses again this year.''
Mayper's real message is that life at Navarro is all about winning, and all about a culture that expects to win.
“We expect to win them all. If you don't, you're in the wrong business,'' Mayper said. “I think our kids expect it, too.''
GC Volleyball Summer Tour: Frost set for a big season
Everybody's back at Frost.
“This will probably never happen again,'' said Frost volleyball Coach Elaine Woods, who returns every player from last year's team.
They are not only back, but they are talented — arguably the most talented group of volleyball players in Frost history.
Former Cowboy Keith Davis delivers motivational speech
Keith Davis believes in dreams.
He lived his.
That was one of the messages Davis, a former Dallas Cowboys safety, delivered to a standing-room-only crowd of youngsters Tuesday at the Boys & Girls Club, where he spoke with enthusiasm and energy about life inside and outside of the NFL.
TTBB: Wortham takes second at state tournament
The Wortham Bulldogs made an impressive run at the Texas Teenage Baseball Association High School Eligible State Tournament in Buffalo and took second in the state.
Tiger Sharks make splash at state meet
There are leaps and bounds, and then there's what the Corsicana YMCA Tiger Sharks did over the weekend at the Lone Star state swimming meet in Frisco.
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