Little Cypress Mauriceville competes in the always difficult District 20-4A. The Bears come in as one of the smallest schools, based on enrollment, in that tough district. Last season LCM was not eliminated from the playoff hunt until the last game of the district finishing with a season record of 4 and 6. The Bears Head Coach Randy Crouch is proud of the effort his team displayed in the 2012 football season. “As the year wore on I thought we improved every week, and we were in it right to the very end, and we were playing for something to the very end and that’s always good,” Crouch recollected.
Coming into the 2013 football season Coach Crouch is excited about the returning experience the Bears have at quarterback. Crouch sited that most other District 20-4A opponents graduated their quarterbacks from last season. Caleb Harley did an excellent job as quarterback throughout the season especially after taking over fulltime when Jake Sonnier was injured in the PNG game. Harley threw for 1,528 yards and 14 touchdowns. Sonnier will challenge Harley for the starting quarterback spot according to Crouch.
Three or four sophomores played in the offensive line last year for the Bears. Their return should give LCM an added boost upfront on offense. Who they will be opening holes to run through is the big question for Coach Crouch. Star running back Alex Sezer graduated last year. Crouch said the coaches are looking to replace Sezer if that is possible, and three or four guys stepped up in the spring that can play running back. Crouch observed all of them bring to the table something different, and it may be in the fall camp before a starter is determined.
Several starters return on defense for the LCM Bears. Coach Crouch is counting on these ball players to lead the Bears on defense. In the secondary Teondre Gant and Dylan Gruber gave Crouch some strong games last season. Brady Lyons and Troy Angelo played a lot of good football at linebacker for LCM. The Bears defensive line should have some depth with several returning lettermen there.
Crouch insisted consistence on defense will be imperative to what success the Bears have in the coming season. “We need to really make a mark there and see if we can’t improve that and play a little bit better defense consistently, I guess, throughout the year, and I think with those kids we’ve got coming back we have the opportunity to,” Crouch said. “When you re-evaluate our team and you break down the films of the years, when we defensively are not giving up those big plays, we look at a big play as 20 plus yards or more, when we hold our opponents to a minimal of that we’re usually in every game,” analyzed Crouch.
A big part of any football team is the kicking game Coach Crouch stated. Crouch believes LCM has an excellent kicker in Trent Manuel who was injured late last season. Crouch pointed out that in the past Manuel showed he has a lot of skill, and now healthy again Manuel should play a big role in the Bears’ success in the upcoming 2013 football season.
Consistency in all phases of the game, offense, defense, and kicking, Crouch preaches is required for a team to compete in District 20-4A. Coach Crouch sees another difficult district race week-in and week-out, giving Nederland a slight nod as the front runner. Overall in the district almost everybody is trying to replace a quarterback, and Crouch sees that as good sign for LCM which returns two quarterbacks to lead the Bears in 2013.
-Dan Perrine, KOGT-