While Thursday night is Halloween, the Black Cats will roll into Wolfforth on Friday night to take on Frenship at Peoples Bank Stadium. It will be the fourth District 2-6A game for the Panthers and Tigers. Mojo remains undefeated in district at 3-0, while Frenship is a game behind at 2-1. Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m.
Frenship started the season with experience and returned 16 starters – nine on offense and seven on defense. The Tigers have two losses – one to Wichita Falls Hirschi and the other to Midland Lee (59-36) in the district opener.
Both teams have defeated Odessa High and Midland High. The Tigers beat OHS 65-21, while the Panthers won 24-0. Permian thumped the Bulldogs 62-0, and Frenship beat MHS 33-0.
This will be the sixth meeting overall between the two teams. Frenship won the first two as non-district games in 2012 and 2013. In the first district clash in 2016, the Tigers were the victors by a score of 40-26. Permian has won the last two contests – 66-14 (in 2017) and 38-10 last year. Surprisingly going into Friday night’s cat fight, Texas Football magazine lists Frenship as five-point favorites.
Permian is averaging 34 points a game, while the Blue-and-Gold have recorded a 44-point average. The Panthers and Tigers have each given up 23 points a game. Both teams have scored most of their points in the first half. Permian averages 11 points in the first quarter and 15 in the second, while Frenship averages 15 in the opening quarter and 12 in the second. The Tiger offense has produced a 490-yard average of total offense (317 passing and 173 rushing) through eight games.
AT THE HELM:
Jay Northcutt is in his third year with the Tigers, and first head coaching gig. Prior to Frenship, he coached at Garland Sachse (2013-16) as offensive coordinator. Northcutt has also had coaching stints with Lewisville ISD (2000-06) and Colleyville Heritage (2007-12). He played for West Texas A&M as a defensive back and is a 1994 graduate of Plainview.
The Tigers run a somewhat balanced offense, and are one of the few teams in district that favor the pass over the run. Quarterback Donovan Smith (6’3″ 185) has completed 169 passes out of 249 attempts for 2,423 yards. He has thrown 21 touchdowns and four interceptions. Smith is very capable of calling his own number and has 263 rushing yards from 57 carries. The main running back is William Bayouth (5-11 185). He has 109 carries for 767 yards and 12 touchdowns. Erin Brown (5’6″ 195) will make an occasional appearance in the backfield. He has 27 touches for 146 yards and has scored twice.
Smith has consistently thrown to three targets in the Frenship receiving corp that have efficiently got the job done. Drew Hocutt (5’11” 170) has 45 receptions for 731 yards and eight TD’s. Cooper Scott (5’11” 180) and Jordan Maden (5’9″ 160) are regularly getting their share of passes as well. Both have 39 catches – Scott has 611 yards and three touchdowns, while Maden has 502 yards and five scores. Bayouth also has caught 15 passes for another 92 yards.
The Tiger defense has recorded three interceptions, six fumble recoveries, and a forced fumble. On the line, Evan Barboza (6-1, 230), Logan Douglas (6’2″ 210), junior Isaiah Vasquez (5’9″ 220), and Cayson Brito (6’0″ 230) are like a brick wall end-to-end. All are good size and make runners earn every yard. They are backed up by linebackers Tristan Laughlin (5’11” 190) and junior Jake Gilbert (6-0, 225). The two lead the team in tackles. Frenship has Colton Anderson (6’0″ 180), Alyjah Garcia (5’10” 180), and Stefano Sanchez (5’8″ 160) in the defensive secondary.
Cage Jones (6’0″ 180) handles the punting and kicking duties. He has punted 19 times with a 41.1 yard average. His longest has been 53 yards. Jones has maintained an average of 54 yards a kick. He has made 42-of-43 extra point attempts. Jones has also successfully connected on seven of his nine field goals, with a 36-yarder being his longest. Ty Glass (5’6″ 170) handles most returns and has a 22-yard kickoff return average, and gains 10 yards per punt return.
Expect a cold South Plains night! The forecast is calling for mostly clear conditions. A kickoff temperature of 49° will fall to 41° by game’s end. Winds will be out of NNE at 10-15 mph.