Last season started out slow for Little Cypress-Mauriceville. The Bears picked up steam when the district started. They competed for a district title before finishing in third place and making the playoffs.
Coach Randy Crouch has some Bears back on offense that should help keep LC-M moving the ball in the right direction. Every offensive play starts with the snap from center, and that will initiate with senior Carter Cates again this year. Crouch is excited to have him back.
Newcomer of the year in district last year was Brendon Pollock. He will be catching passes again for the Bears at wide receiver. Talking about wide receivers James Williams and D. J. Williams both return as potent threats in the passing game. Seth Carpenter and Max Greer round out a solid group of receivers for Little Cypress-Mauriceville.
Injuries caused Ethan McCollum to miss several games at quarterback last season. McCollum will return at quarterback for the Bears. Crouch recalled, “Despite the injury he was able to come back.” Landon Bearden will join McCollum in the LC-M backfield.
Returning in the front line is Kollyn Brown who played a lot of snaps starting with the district season. Also, in the offensive line Chris Greer will play tackle. Timothy Bahl is another letterman in the line for the Bears.
There are also familiar faces on defense for Crouch and the Bears. James Williams will also start in the secondary. Ken’Teon Champine returns and was a standout at defensive back with three interceptions last year.
At linebacker is returning starter Anthony Bandiero. Matthew Lopez is a letterman who will also play some linebacker. Diamante Kiel in the defensive line is a returning starter. Oliver Garcia came up to the Bears’ varsity the middle of last season and will be playing some defense according to Crouch.
Coach Crouch advised there are some Bears that have worked their way through the ranks and are now ready to contribute on the Little Cypress-Mauriceville varsity. Gunter Johnson could be playing in the line on both sides of the ball. The coaches are anxious to see Erich Garcia also develop as a linemen.
Carson Peet played some last year and should play some wide receiver and running back this season. Peet could be the Bears’ H-Back.
This is a new season for Little Cypress-Mauriceville, and it is another year in one of the most balanced districts in the state. Crouch evaluated the Bear’s district opponents pointing out that if it could get any tighter than it was last year it could do that this season.
As the season wound down in 2018, the Splendora Wildcats distanced themselves from the rest of the district. They have lost many of their stars, but Crouch believes they will still be very good with several standouts back.
The coach thinks the Bridge City Cardinals will be better this year. The Livingston Lions played a lot of sophomores who will have a year of experience for this season. The Lumberton Raiders and the Huffman Falcons should once again be formidable opponents for Little Cypress-Mauriceville.
Crouch stated the difference between being in sixth place and in first place in the district is not going to be a whole lot. He added in the district race every week it could come down to the last possession. “We hope that we’re ready to meet the challenge,” Crouch concluded.
-Dan Perrine, KOGT-