Mineral Wells Area News

WEEK 10 HSFB REVIEW/PREVIEW: Playoffs crunch time for most area teams while Millsap seeks district title

WEEK 10 HSFB REVIEW/PREVIEW: Playoffs crunch time for most area teams while Millsap seeks district title
October 25
21:21 2023


Special to Mineral Wells Area News

Two weeks remain in the regular high school football season. Most Palo Pinto County area teams have their work cut out for them if they are to realize their goals of post-season play.

Not Gordon or Millsap, however. Their playoff tickets are punched. The No. 1-ranked Longhorns are in firm control of their district, while Millsap has a key game Friday in its hunt for a district championship.

Let’s review last week’s games and preview this week’s area football action:


First-year Rams Head Coach Cody Worrell set one primary goal for the 2023 season. Make the playoffs.

Mineral Wells has two remaining games to try and make that happen, needing one win. Will it be this week at Top 20 Decatur, or the last week at home facing Burkburnett?

Mineral Wells and Decatur are teams going in opposite directions. Coming off a bye week, the Rams (3-5, 0-2) have lost four straight while the Eagles have won four straight. Maxpreps has Decatur ranked 17th in Class 4A-1. The Eagles (5-4, 3-0) have locked up the District 4-4A-1 title ahead of their regular-season finale.

Decatur has been stifling in its three district games, scoring 132 points while holding Springtown, Burkburnett and Wichita Falls to a combined 38 points in those three wins.

Burk has had an off year. Going into last week’s game they had won just two games on the season. But the Bulldogs last week beat Wichita Falls, 44-28. The Coyotes defeated Mineral Wells, 41-26, in the teams’ district openers Oct. 6, one of their two wins on the season. Decatur crushed Wichita Falls 58-0 two weeks ago.

In other words, Mineral Wells has its work cut out for them if they are to achieve their new coach’s stepping-stone goal.

Kickoff at Eagle Stadium is set for 7 p.m.


The biggest area game of the week will take place in Millsap, where the Bulldogs will welcome the Jacksboro Tigers to town in a Top 20 matchup. The District 5-3A-2 title is on the line.

Maxpreps ranks the 5-2 Bulldogs at No. 20 in Class 3A-2. Jacksboro is undefeated at 8-0 and is ranked No. 5. Both teams won their first three district games.

Both have also qualified for post-season. The question is which team will enter as district champ? Millsap and Jacksboro will face opponents currently at the bottom of the district – Merkel and Dublin – in next week’s season finales.

Millsap is riding high on a four-game win streak and has the home field advantage over the powerful Tigers. Millsap last Friday defeated Eastland, 25-21, after trailing entering the fourth quarter. But the Bulldogs outscored the Mavericks 13-7 in the final quarter.

Quarterback CR Tippie threw for 203 yards and two touchdowns, but was also picked off twice. Tripp Moore and Brandon Savage each had scoring catches, while Kai Hanog (173 rushing yards on 26 carries) and Reid Green (92 yards) had ground scores. Moore recorded 104 receiving yards on seven catches.

Millsap’s defense will have to figure out how to slow down Jacksboro’s potent offense, which this season has put up 383 points (47.8 ppg). Both teams have played well defensively in district, with Millsap giving up 57 points and Jacksboro allowing 59.

The Bulldogs will need to limit mistakes and penalties, make some stops and create and capitalize on turnovers while keeping the Tigers’ offense of the field as much as possible.

The game at Bulldogs Stadium is scheduled for a 7 p.m. start.


The Horns didn’t have to linger in Lingleville long, defeating the Cardinals, 61-0, under the Thursday Night Lights.

It was the sixth time this season the Class 1A-1 top-ranked Longhorns (8-0, 3-0) ended the game at halftime, and the 18thstraight regular season game Gordon has mercy-ruled its opponent. Gordon put up 37 first quarter points and another 24 in the second.

It was a typical Gordon win. The Horns needed just 12 offensive plays that produced four rushing touchdowns and a passing score. Noah Kostiha had a 13-yard scoring pass to Brayden Walters. The four rushing touchdowns came from Stryker Reed on runs of 33 and 52 yards, Riley Reed on a run of 11 yards, and Whit Fuller also on an 11-yard run.

Gordon has put up 442 points in their eight games – again six of those playing just two quarters – while allowing a combined 36 points.

The Horns will head west down Interstate 20 Friday to take on the Baird Bears. Gordon will want to take Baird seriously. The Bears are also 3-0 in district and 6-2 overall. Baird is on a four-game win streak, coming off a 63-18 defeat of Gorman.

It’s a slated 7:30 p.m. kickoff at Baird Bears Stadium.


Strawn traveled to Newcastle with momentum in its District 8-1A-2 opener, having won four in a row and sporting a 5-2 record.

Newcastle (7-1, 0-1) showed why they are ranked No. 8 in Class 1A-2. The Bobcats got off to a fast start against Greyhounds and didn’t let up in taking a 74-24 win. The game ended with just under 4 minutes left in the third quarter.

Emotions were high on the Strawn side of the field as thoughts among coaches, players and fans centered on junior lineman Keaton Tunnell who remains hospitalized following brain surgery for a cyst discovered after he was hurt playing against Ranger on Oct. 6.

Strawn Head Coach Dewaine Lee told his team afterward they are in the playoffs, but only if they win their last two games against the Burgs – Forest and Gold. Strawn (5-3, 0-1) travels to Forestburg for a Friday contest with a 7:30 p.m. kickoff. Forestburg is 1-6 on the year and coming off a 66-30 loss to Gold-Burg, which has a 6-2 season record. Strawn will finish the regular season next week at home against Gold-Burg.


Ranked No. 2 in Texas Christian Athletic Fellowship six man football, Waco Methodist Children’s Home took a 60-8 win over the Community Christian School Warriors. The game was called at halftime.

MCH improved to 7 -1 on the season and 3-0 in the district. The win sets up a showdown this week for the district title against St. Paul’s Prep, which is 5-3 overall and also 3-0 in district.

The Warriors’ record fell to 5-3 overall and 1-2 in district, sitting in third place. CCS will head to Georgetown on Friday to play Grace Academy, which is 2-7 on the season and 0-3 in district, coming off a 62-28 loss to St. Mary’s.


The Collinsville Pirates came into their game at Santo ranked in the top five in Class 2A-2. They showed why they deserve the ranking, defeating the Wildcats 47-10.

The Pirates threw for 415 yards with four touchdowns and two more scores on the ground.

The loss dropped Santo to 2-6 on the season and 1-3 in District 8-2A-2. The Wildcats sit in fifth place in the district. 

They will need to win their last two games. This week they travel to face the Celeste Blue Devils, ranked by Maxpreps 20th in the state in Class 2A-2. Celeste is 6-2 on the season and 3-1 in the District 8-2A-2 standings. The Blue Devils defeated Era last week, 56-28.


The Pirates earned their first win of the season two weeks against Gorman. They were unable to translate that into two wins after losing a hard-fought game Friday to the Bryson Cowboys, 44-24.

Perrin (1-7, 1-2) hopes to notch its second win this Thursday night hosting the Lingleville Cardinals (2-6, 0-3) when the teams meet in six man District 9-1A-1 action. Kickoff at Pirates Stadium is slated for 7:30 p.m.

The Pirates will need a win this week to make playoffs, as a win in their season finale is unlikely as they will close against Class 1A-1’s top-ranked Gordon Longhorns.


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