, Muskogee, OK

October 15, 2013

Fort Gibson looking to regroup against Muldrow

By Ronn Rowland
Phoenix Sports Writer

— The Fort Gibson Tigers have little time to pout over their 42-28 loss to Poteau last Friday.

The Tigers host Muldrow at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Leo Donahue/Tiger Stadium and have a “must-win” attitude if their goal of a District 4A-4 title is to remain in sight.

“Now we can’t control our own destiny like we wanted to,”  said Fort Gibson coach James Singleton. “We need a little help if we still want to have a chance at winning a district championship.”

The Tigers (4-2, 2-1) knew they were going to be in a tough game with Poteau and feelings were not unwarranted. The Pirates rushed for 241 yards and held the potent Tigers’ rushing attack to 112 yards.

“It’s a big game any time you play a quality opponent,” Singleton said. “I don’t think Poteau will lose another game for the rest of the regular season. In some key situations, they made some plays and we didn’t.”

While Muldrow (2-4, 2-1) and Fort Gibson, No. 9 in the Associated Press Class 4A prep football poll, are tied with Cascia Hall, next week’s opponent for Fort Gibson, and Sallisaw for second in the district standings, the Tigers have a 14-point advantage over Muldrow in the district tie-breaker but can’t be caught taking the Bulldogs for granted.

“It kind of re-energizes and re-focuses the kids that our most important game is our next game,” Singleton said about not looking ahead to Cascia Hall.

Muldrow, coming off a 28-14 loss to No. 7 Cascia Hall, has one main weapon that it runs its offense through. Senior Dominic Blue has rushed for 687 yards on 103 carries and 12 touchdowns, thrown for 737 yards and three touchdowns while completing 56.3 percent (58-for-103) of his passes and has hauled in seven passes for 60 yards and two touchdowns.

“He is an outstanding talent,” Singleton said. “We saw him this summer and during 7-on-7, he played receiver. But, I believe, they had some injuries during the season and they moved him to quarterback.

“I’ve talked to their coach, Rob Johnson – I’ve known him for a long time – and he said they’re several Division I schools that are very, very interested in him. He’s one of those special kinds of athletes.”

When Blue does throw the ball, his main target is D’Andre Owens, The senior receiver has caught 24 passes for 263 yards, an average of 10.96 yards per catch.

“One of the things Blue does is he makes so many things happen with his feet,” Singleton said. “He’ll start to scramble, and then when coverages break down, he has an uncanny ability to find wide open receivers. As a result, their yards per catch is really, really high.”

With a short week because of fall break beginning Thursday, practice regiments had to be adjusted. It also does not allow that extra day to recover from the bumps and bruises suffered against Poteau.

“Today, we kind of combined our Monday and Tuesday practice,” Singleton said on Monday. “We normally don’t go full pads on Monday but we did today and did a lot of our Tuesday stuff today. (Today) we’ll combine a Tuesday-type Wednesday and on Wednesday, we’ll do a walk-through to get our legs back underneath us.”