Indians look to deal Sulphur its 2nd district loss

Beau Bearden
bbearden@gannett.com

The injury bug is never easy to recover from, especially when it’s still an issue as the regular season comes to a close.

The Plainview High School football team has faced that battle all season and it’ll stay at the forefront when the Indians make the trek north to play Sulphur at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 30.

“We’re still banged up — we still haven’t gotten a couple of guys back from injuries who started earlier in the season,” said Plainview head coach Joe Price. “It’s just a situation where we’re going to have to just keep figuring out ways to get other kids ready to play. Hopefully this week against Sulphur, we’re able to play well, continue to work hard and work towards what we’re trying to do next week — go win a football game.”

But the Indians (3-5 overall, 3-2 in District 3A-2) will have their work cut out for them.

Sulphur’s Logan Smith has run the ball with ease this season. The senior accounted for five touchdowns last week as the Bulldogs cruised to a 53-0 shutout of Dickson.

Price is well aware of Smith’s talent and said he’s improved a lot from a season ago when Plainview tallied a 24-22 victory.

“Smith is the main piece of their offense,” Price said. “You have to do a good job of shutting him down or they’re just going to continue to hand him the ball. He’s a pretty dynamic kid.”

But Sulphur’s rushing attack is nothing new. The Bulldogs have gone that route over the years and that likely won’t change.

“Those guys have always been a run-first team,” Price said. “It seems like they always have a really good kid at running back. They’ve had a good string of kids there over the last four or five years, with (Trey) Kiser and Logan Smith. They’ve had some good kids there back-to-back.”

Price also said that Sulphur (5-3, 4-1)  is a really physical team and does a good job on the offense and defensive lines.

The Indians aren’t backing down though. 

They’ll counter with running backs Caden Pickens, Jeston Gilliam and Blue Norman. Plainview also has wide receiver Morgan Pearson and up-and-coming quarterback Grant Graves.

The group looks to deal the Bulldogs their second district loss, but it’ll be against a team led by a coach who’s in his 48th season on the Sulphur sideline.

“Coach Jim Dixon has been there ever since I’ve been in Oklahoma,” Price said. “I think he’s been there for (more than) 40 years. It’s just a testament to him. He’s done a good job with the kids in the community. He’s the kind of guy that is honest and hardworking. A bunch of the coaches in Oklahoma really have a lot of respect for him.”