SSHS and Poteet playing rare Thursday night tilt
Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor

Sept. 7, 2005 - Sulphur Springs and Mesquite Poteet will be playing on Thursday this week, but Brad Turner doesn't believe the short week will affect the level of play once the whistle sounds at Mesquite Memorial Stadium.

The game is set for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff at the 20,000-seat stadium on Scyene Road.

"It's not a big deal to me what day we play. We have some injury situations that might come into play, but we'll line up and play the best we can," said Turner, SSHS head coach. "We knew what day we play on, so we've prepared for it."

The game is on Thursday because two other Mesquite schools are using their two stadiums on Friday.

Poteet (2-0) comes into the game with a defense that has allowed just three points in wins over Denton and McKinney North and an offense that churned out 248 yards rushing in their last game.

The challenge for the Wildcats (1-1) will be to stop Poteet junior running back Taylor Dupree, who had 208 yards on 30 carries against McKinney North. Sulphur Springs allowed Forney's Mekelle Webb 219 yards on 33 carries last Friday.

"Taylor Dupree is listed at 200 pounds, but he looks like he probably goes about 190," Turner said. "He's a zone back and they run him a lot, which is a concern. Defensively, we're going to have to tackle better and stop the run.

"I'm sure right now they're licking their chops thinking they're going to be able to run the ball, so the challenge is going to be on our defense to step up and stop the run and make them throw the ball. They like to run it and keep it, similar to what Forney did except out of the one-back set."

Dupree hasn't scored a touchdown yet, though quarterback Seth Sartain has ran in two scores as the Pirates like to run the option occasionally. The other TD was a short run by wide receiver Calvin Smith, a two-way starter and Poteet's best athlete.

Poteet has only scored three touchdowns in two games, partly because they have turned the ball over five times. But, they haven't had to score much because the defense hasn't allowed anything.

"They've given up three points in two games, so obviously they're doing something right," Turner said. "They haven't played Jacksonville and Forney, so I hope our competition has been better.

"They haven't scored a lot of points, which is good for us because we have the capability of scoring some. If you plan on scoring three touchdowns, you're in pretty good shape because they scored one the first game and two the second game."

The offensive challenge will be to respond to Poteet's blitzing defense. They run three defensive linemen with three linebackers and a rover, all of whom can blitz on any play.

"Jacksonville was faster and Forney was bigger, so we've seen different types of defenses," Turner explained. "We feel like we can do some things."

The Wildcats got into an offensive groove in the second half of their 30-26 win over Forney. Beginning with a field goal on the final play of the first half, the Cats scored on four straight possessions.

Quarterback Logan Turner ended with two touchdowns rushing and two passing, and running back Chris Person went over the century mark rushing with 126 yards on 18 totes.

That kind of production would go a long way toward beating the Pirates, who haven't allowed more than 100 yards rushing in their first two games.

"Watching them, they're very well coached," Turner said. "The game's at their place and they're playing pretty good right now, so their confidence will be high."

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