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Graham knocks out Decatur Tough outing for Eagles in final tune-up BY CLAY CORBETT

The eighth-ranked Graham Steers proved why they deserve the state recognition Thursday at Eagle Stadium. In the first phase of the scrimmage with the first and second teams, Graham blanked Decatur 5-0. Decatur didn’t fare much better in the live quarter, losing 14-0. “They played faster, more physical, and aggressive than we did,” Decatur head coach Kyle Story said. “They executed offensively and were crisp and sharp. “We didn’t slow them down much, and we didn’t move it much. We’ve got a lot of room for improvement.” The Steers took only two plays to put up their first touchdown of the night on a 60-yard run. Their next possession went six plays, capped off by a six-yard run. Graham added one more score in their first series, on a 31-yard touchdown pass. A lot of missed tackles cost the Eagles throughout the scrimmage. “The tackling is key,” Story said. “We didn’t tackle phys-

ically and get them to the ground. We left some holes for them to throw the ball, and we didn’t get any pressure on the quarterback.” Decatur’s first team offense picked up a couple of first downs, but was unable to sustain any drives against the Graham defense. Starting quarterback Grayson Muehlstein finished the night 10-for-19 for 60 yards. Decatur’s second-team defense made a couple of nice stops. Cole Vaughn had an interception and a fumble recovery. The first teams finished off the scrimmage with one live quarter. Decatur’s initial drive ended on downs and the Steers took advantage, going 56 yards in seven plays before scoring on a threeyard run. After a Decatur punt, Graham struck again. The Steers went 65 yards in 11 plays, capping the drive again with a three-yard dive into paydirt. With 1:36 remaining, the Eagles got the ball back again, but time ran out on the offense. “This test shows us the level we’ve got to get to, and we’re not there yet,” Story said. “We’ve got to step it up a notch for sure.” Decatur opens the regular season Aug. 30 at Trinity Christian in Addison.


ROLL WITH THE PUNCHES — Decatur’s Matt Cedrone loses his helmet while staying with the block Thursday against Graham. The Eagles open the regular season next week at Trinity Christian.



Steppin’ up

Decatur ranks in top 5

Lady Eagles flex their muscles against Aledo



The No. 3 Decatur Lady Eagles showed how good they can be in 2013. In their home opener Tuesday, Decatur (6-2) knocked off the No. 3 team in Class 4A, Aledo, 16-25, 2725, 25-23, 25-23. “After the way we started I was proud of the girls for recovering,” Decatur coach Claire Benedict said. “They [Aledo] are a really good team that is well coached they have a strong middle, a strong defensive line, and they serve the ball well.” After falling in game one, the Lady Eagles rallied to turn the momentum in game two. Decatur trailed early but came back to tie the game 8-8. They wouldn’t trail again until Aledo took a 21-20 advantage. A kill by Makayla Mayfield put Decatur back on top 22-21. She ended the game with another kill for a 27-25 win. Mayfield finished with a tremendous line of 21 kills, 31 digs and five aces. “Game two was a momentum-

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HIGH FLYING START — Decatur’s Cooper Martin slams down one of her nine kills during the Lady Eagles’ win over Aledo Tuesday. changer for sure, especially after game one,” Benedict said. “We had some people that came off the bench that performed well for us, and that was the difference in the game.” Decatur rode the high of game two to a large early lead in game three. They took a 13-4 advantage before Aledo started chipping away. A 16-7 Lady Bearkat run tied the game 20-20. The Lady Eagles held tough down the stretch and ended it with a Cooper Martin kill.

“We did not pass great, but we were smart and did a good job of getting the ball to people who were terminating it,” Benedict said. “Our setter [Stormi Leonard] did a good job getting the ball to girls that were getting kills.” Aledo jumped on top in game four 19-15, before a Decatur timeout. The Lady Eagles responded with a 7-3 run to tie the game at 22 and eventually clinched the match. Benedict said they made a few ad-

justments in those final three games. “We changed the lineup a little bit and talked strategy of trying to contain some of their hitters,” she said. “This group hates to lose more than they like to win.” Martin finished with nine kills and 17 digs. Darci Billmire and Dylana Hutchins each had six blocks. Caroline Lowery added 10 digs and Serena Estrada had 15. Leonard handed out 36 assists and had 17 digs.

The Decatur Eagles and Lady Eagles will both begin the season ranked in the top 5. The Lady Eagles were picked as the No. 2 team behind top-ranked La Vernia in the Class 3A Cross Country Coaches Association of Texas’ preseason poll. College Station came in at No. 3. The Decatur girls return all their runners from a third-place finish at state a year ago. They have reached the winners circle five consecutive years. “Getting ranked in the top 10 of the preseason polls is a show of respect from the previous year,” Decatur coach David Park said. “Nobody really knows. We are tickled to be there and we feel we can race with anybody between here and the end of the season. This is just the

See Decatur on page 2B


WISE COUNTY MESSENGER, Decatur, Texas, Saturday, August 24, 2013


Peaster sweeps Sissies The Bridgeport Sissies (2-8) fell to the Peaster Lady Hounds Tuesday, 2325, 12-25, 16-25. “We made some young mistakes and unforced errors against a smart and solid team,” Bridgeport coach Rebekah Cummings said. “We will need to remain consistent on both defense and offense in order to be competitive.” Tylar Chapa led the way with 13 digs and four kills. Leah Guinn had 12 digs and three assists. Elaina Peyton handed out 10 assists. Bridgeport returns home Tuesday to take on Wichita Falls Hirschi.

Boyd takes care of Eastland The Boyd Lady Jackets (7-6) swept Eastland Tuesday, 25-9, 25-15, 25-12. “The kids are working hard, and doing all I’m asking of them,” Boyd coach Dusty Crafton said. Brooklyn Scarborough led with eight kills. Bailey Harris handed out 13 assists and Brittney Howard had 10 digs. Stephanie Jordan nailed down six aces. The Lady Jackets took two of three at the first day of the Chico Tournament Thursday. Boyd defeated Saint Jo 25-16, 25-8 and Bryson 2513, 25-16.

They fell to Chico, 19-25, 25-17, 22-25. The Chico Tournament resumes Saturday.

Bryson slides by Chico Bryson edged the Lady Dragons Tuesday in four games, 17-25, 19-25, 25-17, 22-25. Alli York had 30 attacks and three blocks. Breann Hall added 23 attacks and four blocks. Raven Leal was a perfect 18-of-18 from the serve line and had nine attacks. Charlye Biggerstaff finished with 14 attacks and three blocks. Britton Petty had 13 attacks. Chico hosts Poolville Tuesday.

Decatur: Starting strong Continued from page 1B starting line.” Haley Dennard is also off to a good start after joining the Lady Eagles for her senior season. “She is running really well,” Park said. “She’s running up there with Nicole [Neighbors]. Overall


OPEN MAN — Bridgeport’s Trey Cook attempts a pass to Hunter Gantt during the Bulls’ scrimmage against Celina Thursday. Bridgeport opens the season at home next Friday against Alvarado.

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niors off last year’s squad. Park is still trying to fill those final three roles for his top seven runners. “I’m excited about the ones we’ve got coming up,” Park said. Decatur began the 2013 season Friday night competing in the Class 5A race at Lewisville Hebron.

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as a team we are faster at this point than we were last year.” The defending state champion Decatur boys begin their season ranked third in the state. Alvarado captured the top spot with District 9-3A rival Sanger coming in at No. 2. The Eagles lost three se-

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