Fri., Feb. 9th, 2007 Rebels, Bulldogs just looking for win
When Lee and Midland High face off tonight at Grande Communications Stadium, the teams will not be as concerned with who they are playing as much as getting that first district win. Midland High (4-4-1 overall, 0-2 District 3-5A) began district play with high hopes of improvement, but was shut out by Odessa Permian in its opener and gave up four goals in the second half to San Angelo Central on Tuesday. It has been a shock for the Bulldogs, but they continue to prepare with confidence in their plan.
"We're pretty confident," senior captain Erik Carrillo said. "We're not at our highest peak but we're getting there."
The Rebels (3-3-1, 0-1) started district last week with visions of plentiful goals, but has not seen that come to fruition.
Sophomore Montiel Urias recorded 20 points in Lee's six non-district games in leading what was thought to be a potent offensive attack -- and it may yet be. But a bye on Tuesday put the Rebels reaching to find their stride.
"I hate that," coach Chris Bryant said of his early bye. "I think it gets you out of rhythm."
MHS coach Warren Cottle said he thinks Lee's bye gives the Rebels more time to prepare. Cottle, on the other hand, is trying to get his club to refocus after getting hammered 5-2 by an incredibly fast Central team.
The Bulldogs know they will have to focus on Urias and the Lee attack to give themselves a good chance.
"After watching film (of the Central game), we saw what we could improve on, just more consistency," Cottle said. "(We are working on) keeping organized. We need to keep the pressure on so that we can keep (the field) compact."
Bryant said he knows teams key on Urias, and added he is expecting Midland High to double team him. And that means that other Rebels have to step up their offensive efforts. Lee has the talent in Urias, Price Williams and Michael Robertson up front, Lee simply needs offensive production to win this crosstown rivalry, Bryant said.
"Definitely, we have to pressure the ball better. The other thing is scoring some goals," Byrant said.
The loser will likely drop into the cellar of District 3-5A, a hole neither team wants to be in as both attempt to get back to the playoffs after missing last year.
Neither team is playing up the rivalry much because of their current situations.
Bryant said the records do not indicate what each squad can do. They will both take a win anyway they can get it, he added.
"Both teams are looking for a win, it's whoever shows up," Carrillo said. "Our biggest rivals are the teams that (challenge) us. To me it's a must win."