High school games, players to watch this week
Every team needs a leader. But when the Bush boys basketball team begins the process of defending its Class 5A state championship with the first day of practice Wednesday, point guard Travis Courtney won't be participating.
The senior two-sport star has other plans.
He's busy helping the Broncos football team take its game to another level. At 6-1, they've already doubled their previous best win total and have their sights set on the District 23-5A championship game.
And their quarterback's eyes are fixed firmly on the same line.
"I'm going to stay focused because this is what I chose to do," Courtney said. "I love both so I'm going to give it my all."
A bi-district playoff appearance, which the Broncos never have made, would come the weekend before the basketball season starts. If they win a playoff game, he won't suit up for the opener.
That means the basketball team would start its title defense against La Marque — which defeated them 71-67 last season — without their floor leader.
Of course, it is for a worthy cause.
Courtney, who transferred from Channelview last summer and played junior varsity football last season, has proven just as effective a leader on the gridiron as on the court.
He assumed sole possession of the starting QB job when Mark Wright moved after their season-opening win over Nimitz.
And they haven't looked back.
"It's been real great," Courtney said. "They show me a lot of love, they let me know I'm welcome."
Houston-area teams that are undefeated
After this weekend, three districts are going to have just one team remaining with a perfect district record.
Tonight, La Porte and North Shore meet as the only two undefeated teams in District 21-5A. Across town at Woodforest Stadium at 7:30 p.m., Kingwood and The Woodlands meet as the only two undefeated squads in District 14-5A.
At 6 p.m. Saturday, Alief Taylor and Eisenhower, the only two undefeated teams in 18-5A, meet at Thorne.
District 20-5A still has three undefeated teams. Lamar, Madison and Bellaire are all 4-0 in league play, but that will change too, as Lamar and Bellaire meet at 1 p.m. Saturday at Delmar.
Players to watch
Payden McVey, TE
Sr., Deer Park
The senior is leading the Deer in receiving with 377 yards and four touchdowns.
Jerry Bynum, RB
The senior has rushed for 1,191 yards and 17 touchdowns this season to lead District 18-5A.
Joseph Walton, RB
Sr., Santa Fe
The senior is averaging just under 7 yards per carry. He has 1,066 yards and 10 touchdowns this year.
Games to watch this week
North Shore (6-1, 2-0 in District 21-5A) at La Porte (6-1, 2-0)
7 p.m. today, Bulldog Stadium
Radio: 790 AM
North Shore at a glance: The Mustangs have won six in a row and have the No. 1 offense in the district. They’re coming off consecutive 35-point performances in wins over Beaumont West Brook and Port Arthur Memorial. Running back Reggie Bryant (above) rushed for 191 yards and two TDs in last week’s win over the Bruins.
La Porte at a glance: The Bulldogs’ defense allows just 158.7 yards per game, tops in District 21-5A. The Bulldogs have not allowed more than 21 points in a game this season. They average 253.9 rushing yards per game, second to North Shore in the district.
Cy Creek (5-2, 5-1 in District 17-5A) vs. Cy Woods (4-3, 4-2)
7 p.m. today, Pridgeon Stadium
Cy Creek at a glance: The Cougars are tied for first place in the district with Cypress Ridge. They’ve won three in a row and have the district’s second-leading passer (Chuckie Keeton) and second-leading rusher (Devan Demas).
Cy Woods at a glance: The Wildcats possess the district’s top offensive attack, averaging 433 yards per game. Quarterback Colton Huntsman recently returned from an ankle injury and accounted for seven touchdowns in their win over Langham Creek last week.
Texas City (5-2, 2-1 in District 24-4A) vs. Manvel (5-2, 1-2)
7 p.m. today, Alvin Memorial Stadium
Texas City at a glance: The Stingarees are in sole possession of third place in the district race. Five of their games have been decided by 10 points or fewer, and they have won three of those. They’re coming off a 43-33 win over rival La Marque.
Manvel at a glance: The Mavericks are in fifth place in 24-4A. They’re coming off a narrow 41-37 loss to Friendswood. The Mavs’ defense is tops in the district (241.4 yards per game), and they have the second-best scoring offense (38 points per game).
Humble (6-1, 4-0 in District 18-4A) vs. Kingwood Park (5-2, 2-2)
7:30 p.m. today, Turner Stadium
Humble at a glance: The Wildcats have won four in a row and are tied for first place in the district. They’re second in the district in total defense (199.1 yards per game) and third in offense (287 yards per game).
Kingwood Park at a glance: The Panthers are in fourth place but have the district’s top total offense (409 yards per game). They have the district’s leading passer (Zach Vorenkamp) and rusher (Chris Smith).
Memorial (3-4, 2-2 in District 19-5A) vs. Katy (7-0, 4-0)
6 p.m. Saturday, Rhodes Stadium
Memorial at a glance: The Mustangs are tied for fourth place in district. They’re coming off consecutive losses to Cinco Ranch and Katy Taylor, both by fewer than seven points. Their rushing offense is tops in the district, averaging 316.3 yards per game.
Katy at a glance: The Tigers are in first place and ranked No. 2 in the state. They have the district’s top total defense (211.1 yards per game) and top scoring offense (52.1 points per game).
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