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Blue and White,
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Tigers, fight;
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Win this game;
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News Articles About Our Fabulous Team!

Click on the Headlines to see the
Full Articles from 1965

 


Wills Point Wins
Regional Game
With Bobcats
At Tyler 21-0

Wills Point Racks
Hallsville, 21-0

 
 

 

____________________

Wills Point Finishes Undefeated Season
With Win Over Edgewood

Accomplishing the first undefeated season in the school history, Wills Point Tigers held the Edgewood Bulldogs to a minus yardage rushing in the 55 to 0 victory at Edgewood Saturday night. After subtracting the yards gained from the yards lost the Bulldogs had a minus 22 yards rushing.

In attaining the undefeated season with 10 straight victories the Tigers came through with an average game score of 35.5 points, while allowing the opposition 38 points for 3.8 points per game average.

The Tigers lost little time hitting the scoreboard Saturday night. The first time they got their hands on the ball they drove 83 yards in five plays for the score. Snookie Curtis capped the drive by taking a quick pitch around left end for 55 yards and the TD. Tim Sockwell added the extra point. Wills Point's second touchdown was set up by a Bulldog fumble with Sockwell coming up on the bottom of the pile on Edgewood's 35-yard line. John Shepard raced the 35 yards for a touchdown, but it was nullified by a 15-yard penalty.

On the next play Roy Deen picked up the first down with 2 yards to spare on a 27-yard scamper. With third down and one for a first, or 2 yards for a TD, Deen kept the ball on a quarterback sneak and went into the end zone. Sockwell kicked the extra point which put the Tigers ahead 17 to 0.

The next Tiger drive, in the second quarter, covered 86 yards with Shepard picking up 21 yards; C.W. Wilson, 27; Curtis, 11. The Tigers were slowed momentarily by a 5-yard penalty before Deen hit Shepard with a 33-yard paydirt pass. Sockwell, because of a 5-yard penalty, had to kick twice to get the one point.

Wills Point's fourth tally was set up on Edgewood's 28-yard line on an interception by Deen. Shepard put the 6 points on the scoreboard with a 27-yard run, and Sockwell's kick was good for lead of 28 to 0.

The Bulldog quarterback, Larry Bass, threw an incomplete pass to Don Bailey who was in position to make a long gain. The same combination connected on a screen pass, but the alert Tiger defense caught Bailey at the line of scrimmage for no gain. On the fourth down punting situation Roger Joyner couldn't handle the snap from center, and was thrown for a 21-yard loss on his own 12-yard line.

C.W. Wilson collected all 12 yards to score on a 2-yard plunge with only 31 seconds left in the half. Sockwell made the score 35-0 with his kick from placement.

On the second half kickoff Deen returned the ball 75 yards and was knocked out of bounds on the 5 yard line. The Tigers ended up having to try a 23-yard field goal on fourth down, but the kick failed. Bruce Miracle recovered Edgewood's third fumble to set up Sockwell's 32-yard field goal. This score moved the Tigers out ahead 38 to 0.

Wayne Lusk recovered Edgewood's next fumble on the Bulldog's 34-yard line. It took Tim Provence one play to score. Sockwell's kick was true--45 to 0. Late in the fourth quarter, from the 8-yard line and with 4 yards for a first, the Tigers elected to try for a field goal. Sockwell's accurate kick flew 25 yards to make the score 48 to 0.

Wills Point hauled in their second interception of the night when Curtis snatched the ball and returned it to the 23-yard line.

Shepard broke through the left side of the line and cut to his right across the secondary to go in for the score untouched. Sockwell put the final point on the score board with 1:15 left in the game.

Game Statistics
WP
E
First Downs
11
2
Yards gained rushing
344
59
Yards lost rushing
30
80
Passes attempted
4
14
No. Passes completed
1
3
Yards gained passing
33
7
Passes intercepted by
2
0
Fumbles lost by
0
4
No. Punts & average yds.
3-32
7-28
Penalties & Yds.
10-100
4-30
Wills Point
14
21
10
10 -- 55
Edgewood
0
0
0
0 -- 0

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_______________________________________________________

 

Tigers Face Jefferson Saturday Night
In Bi-District Game At Gladewater

District champions of 18-A Wills Point Tigers, who earned a berth in the state play-offs with a 10-0 season, will meet Jefferson, winners of District 17-A in Gladewater tomorrow (Saturday) night, in a scrap for the bi-district crown.

Jefferson Bulldogs, who went to the quarterfinals in the play-offs last year after beating Wills Point in bi-district, have chalked up an 8-2 record. This is the fifth straight year that Jefferson has claimed the 17-A title and has beaten District 18-A each year in the past to claim bi-district.

Jefferson fields a powerful running club, as well as a passing and kicking. Powerhouse of the team is 180 pound halfback Marty Whelan, twice all state and last year All-American honorable mention. Another good fast runner is quarterback Tony McCann, and Butch Haggard stands out as a lineman.

The Bulldogs go into bi-district play with an 8-2 season record with their only two losses to AAA Clarksville 3-1; and to Rivercrest 14-12 when Whelan was out with injuries. They racked up 247 total points to 95 scored against them.

The Athletic Club and other fans will form a Victory line on the field prior to the game.

Kickoff time is 7:30 at Bear Stadium in Gladwater, located on the western edge of the city limits on Highway 80. Fans are warned that there is not adequate parking space, and more than likely can expect parking problems.

Two chartered buses will carry fans to the game. They will load at the parking lot near the Rose Monument and leave at 5:30. At press time, a few seats were still available, and if anyone wishes to reserve a seat they may contact Mrs. L.U. Castleberry.

A student bus will also be carried to the game. The bus will leave the school at 4:00.

Tickets went on sale early Monday morning. Even though most of the 893 reserved seats have been sold, there are still plenty of good seats remaining in the general admission section.

The reserve seat tickets are on sale until noon today at Flanagan's, Western Auto, Murrey Motors, Brookshires and Langs. Prices are $1.25 for pre-game reserved, and $1.50 at the gate; 50 cents for students pre-game only; all general admission tickets will be $1.25 at the gate, student or adult.

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____________________________________________________________

 

Wills Point Wins Bi-District Playoff
With Jefferson 44-0

Wills Point Tigers took a big step in the State Class A Football Playoffs Saturday night when they romped over the Jefferson Bulldogs 44 to 0 in the bi-district contest at Gladewater. The Tigers set the trend for the tilt with the opening kickoff-covering the kickoff and gaining possession. Sharp tackling and blocking by the Tigers proved too much for the Jefferson eleven. On Wills Point's opening kickoff the alert Tigers took advantage of a loose ball that hit around the 25 and bounced back to the 28. Donnie Dodson dived onto the ball for the Tigers. John Shepard crashed through the line for a 12-yard scamper and a first on Jefferson's 16 to open up the Tiger offensive. It took the Tigers 4 plays to score from there with Roy Deen covering the last 4 yards with only a minute and one second gone in the game. Tim Sockwell added the extra point.

Late in the first quarter Wills Point fumbled which gave Jefferson a first on Wills Point's 23-yard line. The Tigers stopped All-State Marty Whelan with only a one-yard run. Quarterback Tony McCann was trying to pitch out as he was being hit on the next play. The Tiger's Jerry Barnett came up with the ball on Wills Point's 25-yard line. The Tigers drove up the field without faltering. Shepard added the first 11 yards. Deen then carried the ball into Bulldog territory with a 31 yard run gain to their 33. Deen climaxed the drive with a 2-yard run with 36 seconds gone in the second quarter. Sockwell's extra-point try was no good, leaving the score 13 to 0.

Three plays later Deen intercepted a pass on Wills Point's 36 yard line. In 10 plays the Tigers tallied the third time, with the big play being a screen pass from Deen to Shepard for 31 yards. Fullback C.W. Wilson rammed the ball in from 2 yards out for the score. Sockwell's kick gave Wills Point a 20 to 0 lead. Just at the end of the half the Tigers were threatening again. Deen had just picked up 40 yards down to Jefferson's 5 yard line, but a holding penalty on this play brought the ball back and time ran out.

Snookie Curtis received the second half kickoff and returned it 13 yards to Wills Point's 38- yard line. The Tigers were knocking on the door again after a Deen to Curtis pass covered 43 yards. Curtis was knocked out of bounds on the 14. Shepard picked up 8 yards before Deen rounded right end for the score from 6 yards out. Deen also ran the extra points over, but the play was called back. Sockwell then moved 5 yards back and put the Tigers in the lead 27 to 0.

Jefferson's quarterback, McCann, was injured on the touchdown run and was helped off the field. Whelan moved in to quarterback the club. His first pass was intercepted by Deen who returned the ball 30 yards for his fourth TD of the night. Sockwell converted.

Midway in the third quarter Shepard punted the ball to Jefferson's 3-yard line. The Tigers held the Bulldogs on downs.

After a 12-yard punt return by Deen, the Tigers had the ball on Jefferson's 29-yard line. Wilson picked up 3 yards. Jefferson's 14-yard penalty then placed the ball on their 13-yard line. With fourth down and 7-yards, Sockwell split the uprights with a 28-yard field goal to give the Tigers 37 to 0 lead.

Midway in the fourth quarter Shepard electrified the fans on a punt return as he criss-crossed the field and picked up 34 yards down to the 7, but a clipping penalty put Wills Point back to the Bulldog 37. Shepard again picked up the first down on a 23 yard run. The Tigers scored again with Deen going around left end, but a penalty wiped out the TD.

Wills Point again tried a field goal with Sockwell booting at 38 yards. The kick fell short.

The two teams exchanged fumbles with Wills Point coming out on the big end with 2 of Jefferson's. Kirk Evans recovered the last one on Jefferson's 12-yard line.

Halfback Johnny Barnett picked up the first 2-yards before Mickey Robertson moved in for the TD. With 2:52 left in the game Sockwell moved the Tigers ahead 44 to 0.

Jefferson drove down to Wills Point's 25-yard line, but Jerry Lawrence came up with a Bulldog fumble, and the game ended before the Tigers could get a play off.

The coaches used every player on the Tiger bench in the game.

Game Statistics
WP
J
First Downs
22
7
Yards gained rushing
279
120
Yards lost rushing
5
4
Passes attempted
7
5
No. Passes completed
4
0
Yards gained passing
92
0
Passes intercepted by
2
1
Fumbles lost by
2
6
No. Punts & average yds.
2-39
4-23
Penalties & Yds.
13-115
4-25
Wills Point
7
13
17
7 -- 44
Jefferson
0
0
0
0 -- 0

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___________________________________________

 

Class A Regional
Due 8 P.M. Start

It could turn out to be a wild offensive show - or it could be a down-to-earth defensive battle with points as scarce as two dollar bills.

That's how Saturday night's regional Class A State playoff game between Wills Point and Hallsville in Tyler Rose Stadium shapes up. Kick off time is 8 p.m.

Both teams have shown a love to score points this season and have almost at will. At the same time, both have preferred to keep the opponent off the scoreboard, playing defense like the famed 'Chinese Bandits' of LSU when under the direction of Paul Dietzel.

Wills Point has scored 399 points, having run up such wins as 62-6, 55-0, 44-0, and 43-0. Hallsville has scored 278 points, having 42-0, 36-0, and 34-6 wins to its credit.

The Tigers have pinned goose eggs on seven opponents and allowed two others only six points.

Hallsville has blanked five of its opponents and allowed four others only six points each.

Record-wise, Wills Point holds a slight edge. The undefeated Tigers have swept to 11 straight victories, and were crowned East Texas Elite Class A champions earlier this year.Hallsville has lost only once this year, that a 6-0 decision to AA West Rusk. Since that defeat, the Bobcats have come back to win five straight. Neither team had much trouble in bi-district play last week. The 18-A champion Tigers crushed Jefferson 44-0 in Gladewater while the 19-A Champion Bobcats ripped San Augustine 34-6 in Longview.

Neither Hallsville nor Wills Point is a stranger to the state playoffs. The Bobcats won district championships in 1939, 1942, 1943, 1952 and 1963. In 1963, Hallsville advanced to the Class A semi-finals before losing to George West 22-0.

Wills Point played in the playoffs in 1938, 1960 and 1964. Last year, the Tigers lost in bi-district play to Jefferson 14-7.

Ken Jones, in his first year at Hallsville after being successful at Overton, has an attack built around the running of halfback Mike Buchanan and Robert Clampitt. Buchanan, called by Jones an "all-state candidate", is averaging over five yards a carry. Clampitt is averaging over four yards a carry.

Ken Davis, the Wills Point mentor, considers halfback John Shepard and tackle Tim Sockwell as 'all-staters". Shepard, who is averaging 40 yards punting has lettered four years. An excellent pass receiver and runner, Shepard gained 150 yards rushing against Jefferson last week.

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____________________________________________

 

Wills Point Wins Regional Game
With Bobcats At Tyler 21-0

________________________

Wills Point Racks Hallsville, 21-0

A fast start and good defense, especially inside the Tiger twenty Saturday night at Tyler Rose Stadium, propelled the Wills Point Tigers into the state quarter finals in the Class A football playoffs 21 to 0 over the Hallsville Bobcats.

John Shepard gave the Tigers the fast start with a 60-yard TD run with only 28 seconds gone on the clock, and the Tiger 20 yard defense got its metal tried when Hallsville moved to the Tiger 19-yard line early in the first period. Tim Sockwell recovered a fumble to end that drive on the Tiger 25-yard line. Later in the first half the Tigers lost the ball on a fumble to Hallsville on the Tiger 13, but the Tiger defense was there and took over on downs on the 16-yard line.

Wills Point received the opening kickoff. Roy Deen almost broke loose, but was hauled in on his own 40-yard line after a 25 yard return. John Shepard then rammed into the secondary, cut to his right, and was gone for a 60-yard TD run. With only 28 seconds gone on the clock, Tim Sockwell put Wills Point in the lead 7 to 0.

About midway in the first quarter Hallsville received Shepard's 44-yard punt which was killed on the Bobcat's 46 yard line. Within 6 plays Hallsville moved to the Tigers 19 yard line with fullback Tommy Coleman and halfback Robert Clampitt doing most of the legwork. On the next play Mike Buchanan was jarred loose from the ball, and Sockwell was on it stopping the drive and giving Wills Point the ball on the 25-yard line.

The Tigers were stopped a yard short of a first and forced to punt.

The Bobcats again marched steadily down field, but this drive was also halted when Mike Trice's pass was intercepted by Shepard and Deen. Each of the two Tigers took steps before seeing who his partner was, and then polite like, turned loose of the ball for the other. Since both turned loose at the same time, the ball wound up on the ground, but a Tiger recovered it.

Wills Point was not out of danger, however, because on the next play Snookie Curtis was jarred loose from the ball, and Donnie Rogers recovered for the Bobcat's on Wills Point's 13-yard line.

The Tiger defense showed what they were made of with Wills Point taking over the ball on the 16-yard line.

Late in the second quarter Wayne Langford picked off another Trice aerial and returned the ball 18 yards to Hallsville's 30-yard line. Deen picked up 8 yards, and C.W. Wilson gained one yard plus Hallsville's 11-yard penalty which gave the Tigers a first down on the 10-yard line. Deen tried a pass to Donnie Dodson, but it fell incomplete. Their second try was complete for 8 yards. Deen made one yard before Wilson smashed in for the Tigers second touchdown with 1:15 left in the half. Sockwell's kick was true, and the Tigers moved out 14 to 0.

The Bobcats received the second half kickoff and after making one first down moved into punt formation. The ball bounced off Trice's fingertips and flipped over his head. As Trice recovered the ball, he was thrown for a 25-yard loss. The Tigers took over on Hallsville's 15-yard line.

Curtis picked up the first 5 yards. Wilson carried the ball the next 4 times through holes blasted by the forward wall. The last run was for one yard and a TD. Sockwell's third kick was good, giving the Tigers a 21 to 0 lead.

On the kickoff Clampitt was waylaid by the Tigers and fumbled. The Tigers, however, even after recovering the ball could not benefit from their good fortune. They wee thrown for 2 losses.

On fourth down Shepard boomed out a 40-yard punt which was taken on the 5 by Buchanan who backtracked to circle the Tiger defenders. He was caught up on his own 2-yard line.

The Bobcats moved up the field with fourth down and 12 yards needed for a first, the Hallsville lads elected to pass from punt formation. The pass for 10 yards was completed from Trice to Buchanan. Most of the fourth quarter the Tigers kept Hallsville deep in their own territory.

With a little over 3 minutes to go Hallsville moved over the 50 with Buchanan receiving a 19-yard pass from Trice. That plus a 15-yard penalty put the Bobcats on the Tiger 34-yard line, for their deepest penetration of the second half.

In the Hallsville team, the Tigers found the heaviest and possibly the best conditioned team they have faced. Hard running, heavy backs gave the Tigers a good workout Saturday as tacklers were having to take second and third shots to bring them down. Usually sure Tiger tacklers were finding it hard to bring them down.

Tiger punting also proved to be an important factor in the contest Saturday. Shepard punted 9 times for an average of 36 yards, keeping the Hallsville team back in their own territory.

Game Statistics
WP
H
First Downs
6
15
Yards gained rushing
143
218
Yards lost rushing
45
40
Passes attempted
7
24
No. Passes completed
1
8
Yards, passing
8
59
Passes intercepted by
4
2
Fumbles lost by
1
0
Punts & avg. yds
9-36
3-34
Penalties & Yds.
6-80
6-66

Back to Top

 

_____________________________________________

 

Tigers Try Rogers In
Q-Finals Play

(Tyler Morning Telegraph, Saturday, December 4, 1965)

HILLSBORO-Wills Point, one of five undefeated teams left in the Class A ranks in Texas, shoots for a semi-final berth in the Class A playoffs when the Tigers face the Rogers Eagles in an 8 p.m. battle here Saturday.

Neither team was figured to be regional champions according to pre-season polls. Wills Point was ranked second to Quitman in District 18-A and Rogers was figured no better than second in District 24-A.

But the sudden surge to success is now history for both teams. Wills Point, under Ken Davis and staff, has now zoomed past 12 straight foes while recording one of the most explosive scoring machines and tightest defensive units in Texas.

Wills Point has rolled up 420 points for an average of 35 points per game. The lowest point production for the Tigers was in a 17-0 blanking of Quitman. And blankings have been very much in order for the pride of Van Zandt County. Eight teams have failed to score against the Tigers, who have allowed an average of only 3.2 points per game.

But defense is also a strong point of Rogers. The Eagles have allowed an average of 5.4 per contest while throwing up shootout efforts at five clubs. Only two clubs scored two or more touchdowns against Rogers. Reicher of Waco managed a 20-6 win and Rosebud, who went to the Class A Finals last year, was a 12-6 victor over the Eagles. Those were the first two games of the season.

Roy Deen, a 150-pound senior, sets the Wills Point offense in motion with his running threats being halfbacks Snookie Curtis, a junior, and John Shepard. The full backing is done by C.W. Wilson, a 175 pound junior.

Rogers has a pair of seniors, a junior and one sophomore in its backfield. Operating the club at quarterback is 143 pound David Sebek while 132 pound junior Clayton Waits and 160 pound senior Jim Mayfield are the halfbacks. Mike Mayfield, a 165 pound sophomore is the fullback.

Defensively, for Wills Point the starting ends are Donnie Dodson and Kirk Evans while all-state candidate Tim Sockwell and David Teel team at tackles. Steve Steadham and Jerry Barnett are at the guard slots. Wayne Langford, Wilson and Shephard operate as line backers while Deen joins Tim Provence at the halfback job.

Starting Lineups
Wills Point Tigers
Pos.
 
Rogers Eagles
Donnie Dodson
190
Jr.
LE
  Roy Sulak
170
So.
Danny Mapes
215
Jr.
LT
  Richard Green
183
Sr.
Steve Steadham
160
Sr.
LG
  Doyle Harris
182
Sr.
Wayne Langford
165
Sr.
C
  Donald Kotrola
152
Jr.
Jerry Barnett
190
Sr.
RG
  Bill Sparks
136
Sr.
Tim Sockwell
220
Sr.
RT
  Jim Richardson
168
Sr.
Richard Davis
160
Sr.
RE
  Ray Schwertner
176
Sr.
Roy Deen
150
Sr.
QB
  David Sebek
143
Sr.
Snookie Curtis
160
Jr.
HB
  Clayton Waits
132
Jr.
John Shepard
170
Sr.
HB
  Jim Mayfield
160
Sr.
C. W. Wilson
175
Jr.
FB
  Mike Mayfield
165
So.

Wills Point Defense

Ends Dodson Evans  
Tackles Sockwell Teel  
Guards Steadham Barnett  
Linebackers Langford Wilson Shepard
Halfbacks Deen Province  

Back to Top

____________________________________________

 

Wills Point Rolls Over Rogers In Quarterfinals 30-0

A scrappy Rogers eleven was unable to do much with the semi-finals bound Wills Point Tigers Saturday night in the quarterfinals contest at Hillsboro.

Tiger defense held the Rogers lads to a minus 38 yards rushing and 134 yards passing, while the Tiger offense was rolling up 270 yards net, rushing and 110 yards passing.

Rogers received the opening kickoff and was halted a yard short of a first down after 3 downs.

On the Eagle punt, the Tigers signaled for a fair catch on their own 17-yard line. Roy Deen got the game in high gear with a 28-yard scamper, John Shepard then picked up 7 before C.W. Wilson's 2 carries for 2-yards each. Deen's first aerial connected with Shepard, who was hauled in on the 5-yard line for a 33 yard gain. The Tigers were slowed by a 5-yard penalty. Then on third down, a fumble cost the Tigers 4 more yards. With 6:40 left in the first quarter, Tim Sockwell moved the Tigers into the lead with a 30-yard field goal.

The Tiger defense held the Eagles once more. With fourth down and 14, Wills Point again called for a fair catch on Ray Schwertners' punt. From their own 39 the Tigers marched down the field with Shepard picking up the last 17 yards for a touchdown. Sockwell's kick made the score 10-0.

Late in the second quarter, the Eagles' passing attack came to life, David Sebel, first connected with Clayton Waits for 16-yards, then with Schwertner for 25 yards and a first down on Wills Point's 28-yard line.

The same combination was good for 21 yards to the Tigers' 6-yard line with first and goal to go. Sebel then met up with Donnie Dodson 15 yards behind the line of scrimmage. A completed pass to Jim Mayfield moved the Eagles back up to the 5-yard line, but on a fourth down pass, Deen went through the arms of Schwertner to knock the ball down on the one yard line.

From there the Tigers made enough yards for a first down, but a penalty called the play back. On fourth down and time running out in the half, Shepard punted the ball 50 years down to the Eagles' 36yard line.

Sebel was thrown for a 17-yard loss trying to pass. On third down, Sebel's pass was almost picked off by C.W. Wilson who could have been long gone since there were no Eagles around, but it was just out of reach.

The Tigers went to the dressing room with a 10 to 0 lead at the half.

Wills Point received the second half kickoff.

The Eagles had stopped Wills Point's first drive 2 yards short, but on fourth down a Rogers' player jumped offside and the 5-yard penalty gave the Tigers a first down. That was all Deen needed, for on the next play, he broke loose for 65-yards and hit paydirt. Sockwells' kick moved the Tigers out front 17 to 0.

The alert Tiger defense picked off four of Sebel's passes in quick succession receiving an assist from the boys up front putting pressure on the passer. Shepard intercepted the first, but Wills Point lost the ball on a fumble on Rogers' 16-yard line. Tim Provence hauled in the second one and returned it 13 yards to the Eagles' 33-yard line. Deen's 31-yard run was called back, on a holding penalty. On the next play Deen connected with Richard Davis, who followed his blocker like a back. Dodson cleared out one Eagle defender with a tremendous block and Davis side-stepped one on his way for a 48-yard TD. Sockwell missed this extra point, leaving the Tigers 23 to 0.

Wayne Langford intercepted. Sebel's next pass and returned the ball 33 yards, notching up 6 points for the Tigers. Sockwell added the extra point, and the Tigers moved out 30 to 0 with 4:13 left in the third quarter.

Joe Dempsey made the fourth interception on Wills Point's 31. From there the Tigers made 2 first downs. Wilson and Provence teamed for one, and Mickey Robertson made the other on a 23-yard run. The drive was halted, and Shepard booted a 31-yard punt which was killed on the one-yard line.

With 5 minutes to go in the ball game the Tigers were having to punt again; but this time, the punt was blocked, and Rogers took over on Wills Point's 13-yard line.

Sebel's pass was incomplete. He completed his pass, but it was for a minus one yard. His third pass was intercepted by Deen who returned the ball 21 yards.

The game ended 30 to 0 with Sebel being thrown for a 9 yard loss by David Laney.

Game Statistics
WP
R
First Downs
16
6
Yards gained rushing
299
27
Yards lost rushing
29
65
Passes attempted
6
30
No. Passes completed
4
9
Yards, passing
110
134
Passes intercepted by
5
2
Fumbles lost by
2
0
Penalties & Yds.
6-70
1-5
Wills Point
10
0
20
0 -- 30
Rogers
0
0
0
0 -- 0

~~~~~~~~~ On To State, Big Blue ~~~~~~~~~

Back to Top

_______________________________________________________

Three Rivers Pick Over Wills Point

By United Press International
Edna and Three Rivers will be favored to become the first Texas schoolboy teams to gain the state prep finals Friday night. Edna meets Needville and Three Rivers Play Wills Point in the only semifinals on the night's program.

The remainder of the decisive battles to set up next week's championship games are scheduled Saturday and Saturday night with Odessa Permian, San Antonio Lee, Brownwood, San Marcos, Iowa Park and White Deer expected to complete the pairings.

Permian faces Texarkana at Fort Worth and Lee meets Brazosport at Austin in Class AAAA showdowns Saturday afternoon.

Brownwood hosts Weatherford Saturday afternoon and San Marcos plays Bridge City at Houston Saturday night in Class AAA games.

Iowa Park and Plano collide Saturday night at Wichita Falls in an AA semifinal and White Deer meets Keller at Snyder Saturday night in a Class A game.

The Edna-Needville AA match is scheduled at Spring Branch, while in Class A. Three Rivers and Wills Point clash at Temple to open the week end firing.

Edna, one of eight undefeated untied survivors, and unbeaten but once-tied Needville are only about 60 miles apart on the coastal plains west and southwest of Houston, but they did not meet during the regular season and had only one common foe. Needville beat Sweeny 21-7 in a district game, while Edna defeated the same club 27-6 at mid-season.

Edna had only one close game all season - a 21-20 tilt with Class AAA Gonzales - and turned back Kenedy, Hondo and Bishop without a point in three playoff games.

Needville, likewise was not pushed during the regular season, but was held to a 6-6 tie by powerful Port Acres in the regional round and advanced on penetrations. Needville defeated Humble and Bellville in their other two playoff contests.

Both Three Rivers and White Deer sport spotless records, but are located so far apart there was no mutual foe. Three Rivers was held to less than three touchdowns but twice and Wills Point but once in regular season play. Both boast strong defenses.

Wills Point, like Edna had swept aside playoff foes - Jefferson, Hallsville and Rogers without yielding a point, while Three Rivers got a stiff test from Woodsboro while mauling Bandera and Smithville in all three outings.

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______________________________________

Wills Point Overthrows Three Rivers 20-14
In Class A Semifinals Playoff

Wills Point's Tigers pulled the plug and dried up No. 1 Three Rivers in one of the most thrilling tilts of the season at Temple Friday night. The Tigers jumped the Rivers and moved to a 13 to 0 lead in the second quarter, but saw a lateral pass on the kickoff develop into a 81-yard scoring play to put the score 13 to 6 at halftime.

Three Rivers took advantage of a Tiger fumble deep in Tiger territory early in the fourth period to move ahead of the Tigers 14 to 13. Later in the fourth with about 8 minutes remaining, Roy Deen hit John Shepard with a screen pass, and with excellent blocking and extra effort by Shepard, he broke into the open to head down the sidelines and as he neared the 20-yard line Snookie Curtis caught up with him to help convoy him into the end zone past the remaining Three Rivers defender. Tim Sockwell kicked the extra point to make it a 20 to 14 score, and the Tigers tenaciously held to that lead for the vital semifinals victory and a shot at White Deer in the finals.

Three Rivers received the opening kickoff. They made one first down and moved to their own 36-yard line. On fourth down Elroy Crawford punted 29 yards to Wills Point's 35-yard line. John Shepard carried the ball 3 times and picked up a total of 8 yards. On fourth down he punted 14 yards, and the ball went out of bounds on the Bulldogs' 43-yard line.

On the second down quarterback David Franke fumbled, and Donnie Dodson recovered for the Tigers on the Three Rivers' 48-yard line. Shepard carried down to the 45 on a 3-yard run. Roy Deen shook loose for 11 yards and was almost gone. Deen flipped his first pass of the night to end Richard Davis for 14 yards and a first down on the Bulldogs' 20-yard line.

C.W. Wilson cracked the line twice for a total of 5 yards. Deen then tried another pass to Davis, but it fell incomplete. The Tigers decided to go for a 33-yard field goal with Tim Sockwell kicking. The ball sailed short and to the right, and the Bulldogs took over on their 20.

Wills Point once again stopped Three Rivers' drive, this time putting their offensive machine in gear on their own 40-yard line. On this drive Deen kept Three Rivers off balance with his two-pronged-passing and running attack.

On the last play of the first quarter, Deen's pass to Shepard was almost intercepted by the Bulldogs before it fell incomplete. On the first play of the second quarter everyone rolled to the right except Dodson, who went down the left sideline and was wide open to take Deen's 24-yard pass for a TD. Deen tried a run for the extra point and was caught short of the goal, leaving the score 6 to 0 with 11:48 left in the half.

After the Tigers received Three Rivers' punt and started their drive from their own 20-yard line, it took just 6 plays for Wills Point to put their second TD on the scoreboard. Shepard got the ball close to the 50-yard line on his 24-yard scamper. He was helped by a fine block from Dodson. On third down and 4 yards for the first, Deen appeared to be losing ground when he broke by 2 players. Then he went through 4 more Bulldogs and broke into a cluster of blue shirts and moved on in for a 45-yard touchdown run. Sockwell added the extra point, giving the Tigers a 13 to 0 lead with 8:31 left in the half.

On the following kickoff the Tiger defense pulled in to try to control the Bulldogs' speedy Joe Gutierrez. He lateralled to Arlen Zamzow, who scampered down the sideline for 83 yards and the score. Joe Gutierrez's extra point kick was wide to the left.

The game rocked back and forth to the half when the score was still 13 to 6.

It was tit for tat in the third quarter until the Bulldogs' Crawford boomed out a 66-yard punt which rolled to the Tiger 8-yard line. On third down, after Deen had picked up 6 yards, he was knocked loose from the football, and it was recovered by Junior Zepeda. From the 16-yard line Joe Gutierrez found the going getting rougher, and rougher. He made 5, 1, and then no gain. On fourth Franke passed to Gibby Moreno who danced over the goal line from 10 yards out.

With the Tigers leading in penetrations and first downs, the Bulldogs elected to go for the two points. The scoring combination of Franke to Moreno was good for the extra points also. Franke was hit just as he passed. The ball wobbled by two Wills Point defenders and into Moreno's hands putting Three Rivers ahead for the first time of the night by a score of 14 to 13.

On the kickoff Snookie Curtis got the Tigers in good field position with his 26-yard return to the Tigers' 47-yard line. Wills Point, however, was not able to move the ball and was forced to punt with a little less than 9 minutes to go in the game.

On the first play from scrimmage, Joe Gutierrez fumbled and Sockwell recovered for the Tigers on the Bulldogs' 36-yard line. When hopes were growing, after the Tigers received a 15-yard penalty that placed the ball on Wills Point's 49-yard line, the Tigers executed an excellent screen pass.

Deen's pass went to Shepard. While Shepard was waiting for his interference to form, two Bulldog linemen recovered almost in time to catch him as he broke through two defensive backs, leaving only one man between him and the goal. Curtis whizzed by Shepard to block the remaining Bulldog on about the 5 yard line so that Shepard could move in for the 51-yard TD run. Sockwell moved the Tigers 6 points in the lead, 20 to 14, with his extra point kick.

Steve Steadham spoiled Three Rivers' hopes as he intercepted a pass as they neared the 50-yard marker. He returned the ball 8 yards to Wills Point's 47. From this point the Tigers made 3 first downs and had moved to the 18 when the ball appeared to be wrestled from Deen by Greg Wright.

The Bulldogs again moved up the field only to have another pass picked off. This time Deen intercepted and returned the ball 14 yards.

The Tigers from there ran the clock out and gained Class A State Finals with this 20-14 victory.

Game Statistics
WP
TR
First Downs
15
10
Yards rushing
236
133
Yards lost
9
6
Passes attempted
16
22
Passes completed
7
5
Yards gained passing
124
36
Passes int. by
2
0
Punts
7-23
6-41
Penalties
5-59
1-14
Fumbles lost by
2
2
Wills Point
0
13
0
7 -- 20
Three Rivers
0
6
0
8 -- 14

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Tigers on Hunt
Wills Point Trails Deer

Wills Point goes "deer" hunting Saturday in Wichita Falls and if everything goes like the Tigers want it to, they'll bring back the Class A football championship.

The East Texans take on White Deer's Bucks at 8 p.m. to bring the curtain down on a successful season, whether they win, lose or draw.

Under Coach Ken Davis, the Tigers have marched passed 14 opponents this year, including an important victory over No. 1 ranked Three Rivers last week, 20-14.

"But we have to get by White Deer to win it all, don't we?" Davis asked. "They have a real good ball club. I scouted them last Saturday night against Keller and what I saw impressed me very much."

DAVIS SAID the Bucks are big and fast. He says that in fullback Vernon Harlar, a 5-11, 182-pound junior, White Deer has a truly fine player.

"I think their line is a little bigger than ours," he said. "They have two tackles, one at 210 and the other at 230. And, they're fast. We'll have our work cut out for us, that's for sure."

The Wills Point mentor said that the Bucks rely mainly on their ground attack and they have a sound kicking game, especially a good field goal kicker.

However, the Tigers aren't lacking for good football players. In four playoff games thus far, they have blanked three opponents-Jefferson, Hallsville, and Rogers. Last Saturday, they once led Three Rivers, 13-0. Wills Point is sound both on offense and defense.

QUARTERBACK Roy Deen guides the Tigers on offense and is ably assisted by fullback John Shepard and halfback C.W. Wilson. During the regular season, Shepard caught 20 passes and has scored six touchdowns on runs of over 50 yards. His longest tally has been on an 85-yard punt return.

"I would put him along side Jefferson's great back, Marty Whelan, and take Shepard," Davis said.

Anchoring the Tigers line is tackle Tim Sockwell, a 6-2, 220-pound senior. He's considered a great blocker with the speed of a lighter guard. "We use him on traps as well as sweeps, and he does both exceptionally well," Davis said. Sockwell is Wills Point's place kicker and has kicked over 50 extra points this year and six field goals. One of his longest was 32 yards.

PRIOR TO this season, Wills Point had never gotten past the regionals. This year, it's a little different and the Tigers are hungry for the state crown.

They lose nine offensive starters and nine defensive regulars off this year's squad, so Davis will have to start from scratch next season.

It would be easier to start with the Class A crown tucked safely away in the school's trophy case.


Tigers a Go, Go!

Pretty Wills Point cheerleader Nelda Penny stirs up some more spirit for the Tigers, who will face White Deer Saturday night for the State Class A high school football title. The game will be at Wichita Falls.

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White Deer Awaits Cinderella Tigers

WILLS POINT---The Wills Point Tigers are gaining the title of the "Cinderella team" of Class A football among the state' sports writers.

But to the Tigers and the residents of this Van Zandt County town reaching the state finals is proving what has been known to them since the start of the season---"we've got a championship football team."

And the way the Tigers knocked off the Three Rivers Bulldogs last Friday night is justifying the belief of the Pointers. The Bulldogs were rated prior to the game as the No. 1 team of the state in the Single A ranks.

Although the town of Wills Point is basking in the limelight, Coach Ken Davis and the Tigers squad are evading the "light," working toward one effort-"ways and means of defeating White Deer," the team winning the right to face the Tigers in the state finals. The game between the West and East Texas teams will be played at 8 p.m. Saturday in Wichita Falls.

Davis reported Sunday on his scouting Saturday night of White Deer which rolled over Keller in a semifinal match, 34-12.

"They (White Deer) have a good team," Davis said. "I'm especially impressed by their 185-pound fullback, Vernon Marlar. He's one of the best I've seen play and it will be him we must stop for a victory. The White Deer team also has a quarterback that can pass and run."

Even though Davis didn't make a comment on the Wills Point quarterback, it's doubtful that the White Deer Field general can top performances of Wills Point quarterback Roy Deen, who was referred to Friday night by sports writers as 'the dean on this football field.'

Deen threw two touchdown passes and scored once himself on a 45-yard scamper. It was a strike by Deen to John Shepard that sewed up the game for the Tigers against the Rivermen. The screen pass to Shepard, totaling 51 yards, was set up on a fumble recover by Tim Sockwell.

During the Three Rivers game Deen hit seven of 16 passes for 124 yards and gained 120 yards of Wills Points' 235 yards rushing in 17 carries.

Davis said the workouts for the Tigers would be no different during the coming week than those of the past week. "We'll go out there and work on our defense and offense-and that's about the total of it." he said.

Wills Point has advanced further this year in football then any previous team of Van Zandt County. The countians are going with Wills Point residents to the game. Last Friday night in Temple there were residents of Canton, Grand Saline, and Van.

Even though Wichita Falls is halfway across the state from the East Texas town of Wills Point, efforts were underway here Sunday to schedule at least five busloads of fans for the game.

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Wills Point - Attraction Of Week

Tiger Booster - The Terrell Booster Club has enacted the sign shown above across Moore Avenue boosting the Wills Point Tigers for their State Class A football finals game in Wichita Falls Saturday night. The sign was put up Friday morning and will remain through Saturday afternoon. The club hopes it will spur the Tigers on to victory.

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Tigers Near Goal

WILLS POINT - Ken Davis, coach of the Wills Point High School Tigers, was asked several years ago by a college professor, "Mr. Davis, what is your goal in life?" The reply, straight from the shoulder, was, "To have a high school football team under my tutorage win a state championship."

That goal has almost been realized by Davis, whose Tigers take on the White Deer Bucks Saturday night in Wichita Falls for the state title in Class A.

Even though the Tigers must win that game for the goal of Davis, who is possibly setting some sort of record as one of the youngest coaches to lead a team into the finals, the residents of Wills Point say there's no question of the outcome.

"We were a little worried last week," one Wills Pointer commented; "but of this week's outcome there's no doubt that the Tigers will win."

Although Wills Point has had some good teams in the past, the fans are in agreement that the 1965 squad is the best because "it plays as a unit" and "there is no one star."

"I'll tell you this," said barber Bill Martin, using his razor to emphasize his words, "I've seen all the teams of Wills Point, and not one of them can top this one".

Martin even goes out on a limb with, "I believe this year's team could give a good account of itself in the 4-A ranks."

Three former Wills Point gridders who played with their 14-0 record, as "rougher" than the teams on which they played.

City manager Baker Ezel recalls that the team on which he played had a line averaging 200 pounds-"I was the runt in the line." However, he is of the opinion that the 1965 Tiger line could make that of his time "sit up and take notice."

Bill Russell, who played tackle and was captain of his team while at Wills Point high, said the 1965 Tigers have a spirit "seldom seen among a high school team." "They don't become flustered like many teams would when errors crop up or when they get behind in the scoring," he said. "They just come on stronger and make up for any error committed."

"I was never worried during any game of the season - or any post-season game, for that matter," said Grady Tarver, also a former and "small" Tiger. "In fact, I wasn't too worried when Three Rivers took the lead last Friday night (the Tigers overcame a 14-13 Rivers lead for a 20-14 win and a berth in the state finals). I knew the boys could come back. They'd done it in two district games."

But Mrs. Fay Castleberry "was worried sick" when Three Rivers went ahead, "even though I knew the boys could win." And since they did win, as she expected, she's "sure the state championship is in the bag."

H.M. Sullivan, the Wills Point chief of police, has only been a resident of the Point for two years, moving here from Grand Saline. It was a "tight" night for Sullivan when the schools of the neighboring towns tangled during the regular season. "But I'm a Wills Pointer and could only sit there and pray." Sullivan will be the "convoy escort" from Wills Point to Wichita Falls Saturday, and "I'll be leading a convoy with nothing but victory on its mind."

 

Mrs. Hubert Kinney will take up arms to any comment that the Tigers are less than "Number One of Texas." "I've seen the Tigers defeated in only one game in the past 25, and the one Saturday night will make it 26-0," she said.

Coach Davis has four footballs on his desk in the Wills Point fieldhouse. "These are the game balls from the bi-district through last week's semifinal." He said. "I'd sure like to add a fifth."

The youthful grin broadens as if he knows much more than he's saying.

But win or lose, Davis, who has been a member of the coaching profession four years, only two of which has been as head coach, knows he has a 48-minute audience for any game - the residents and his neighbors in Wills Point.

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Wills Point Takes 1-A Football
Championship Over Bucks 14-0

"Twas the week before Christmas, when all through the stands.
Not a person was silent, not Wills Point fans;
Their raincoats were hung o'er their shoulders with care,
As they hoped the state championship soon would be theirs.
Stunned Bucks heard them say, ere they drove out of sight,

"HAPPY FOOTBALL TO ALL,
AND TO ALL A GOOD-NIGHT!"

The Wills Point Tigers captured their first State Football Championship Saturday at Wichita Falls with a 14 to 0 victory over the White Deer Bucks.

Wet conditions on the field and the drizzle for the first three quarters of the game dictated that the contest be a defensive battle, and the Tiger defense once again excelled - completing a season of 15 games and only allowing 5 of the teams to score on them and only one in the playoffs - Three Rivers. Fact that the Bucks were making more first downs and leading them in yards didn't bother the Tigers as they methodically held White Deer in tow.

Early in the contest the Tigers found that the slippery field and wet football would not allow the scatbacks -Roy Deen and John Shepard - to operate efficiently, nor permit the usual Tiger passing game to loosen up the tight White Deer defense. However, in the last 2 minutes of the first quarter the Tigers recovered a fumble on the Buck 13-yard line and three plays later the Tigers used one of their scarce pass plays to go in for the first touchdown when Deen hit Richard Davis. Tim Sockwell kicked the extra point to give the Tigers a 7-0 lead, which they held onto until late in the fourth quarter, when they added an insurance TD. Elliott fumbled a Shepard punt and Donnie Dodson recovered, giving the Tigers possession on the Buck's 12-yard line. Shepard then twisted his way through a herd of Bucks and went over for the touchdown and Sockwell added the extra point.

Leading up to the last touchdown, from the stands it looked as though the Tigers could sense the state crown in their grasps when they took possession on their own 18-yard line with 4 minutes and 42 seconds left in the game. Needing to hold possession of the ball for a few minutes the Tigers started giving the ball to C.W. Wilson up the middle and with the offensive line giving that extra effort and Wilson carrying Bucks on his back, the Tigers picked up two first downs. By the time Wilson carried once more for 4 and Deen added 5, the clock had run down to less than two minutes left. It was then that Shepard boomed out a 51-yard punt and the White Deer safety fumbled, setting up the last tally.

The game opened in drizzling rain and Roy Deen took the opening kickoff on his own 4-yard line and returned it 21 yards to the Tigers' 25. John Shepard put 2 runs together for 11 yards and a first down. C.W. Wilson did the same with 12 yards. The Tigers, however, were halted and had to give the ball to the Bucks with a punt.

White Deer made a first down and was well on their way for a second first down when a 12-yard pass from Philip Hart to end Bobby Rapp was fumbled as a Tiger hit Rapp. Shepard recovered for Wills Point on his own 29 yard line.

The Tigers again made 2 first downs. Then on fourth down with 2, the Tigers elected to kick.

With 2 minutes and 5 seconds left in the first quarter, halfback Randy Elliott was hit by Donnie Dodson. The ball squirted out and Kirk Evans recovered it on White Deer's 13 yard line. Wilson crashed down to the 7-yard line, on a 6-yard run. Deen moved down to the 4 yard line, but a penalty brought the ball back 5 yards. On the next play Deen tossed a 12-yard TD pass to Richard Davis, who was running all alone in the end zone. With 43 seconds left in the first quarter, Tim Sockwell kicked the extra point to make the score 7 to 0.

In 3 plays the Tigers had the ball again on a Buck miscue. David Teel covered a loose ball but the pleasure was short lived because the Tigers lost the ball on a fumble.

Once again the Bucks marched to the tune of 37 yards and 3 first downs. With 10 minutes to go in the half their highly rated fullback, Vernon Marlar, was injured and removed for the rest of the game. His replacement, Ronnie Sargent, picked up 11 yards on the next play.

With a first down on the Tigers 26, Hart tossed a swing pass to Sargent, but Shepard came up fast and caught him 5 yards behind the line of scrimmage. With fourth down, Monty Hawpe was back to punt. The ball went straight up in the air, came down, took a Wills Point bounce and landed 13 yards behind the line of scrimmage.

Wills Point had a first down on Snookie Curtis' 6-yard run, but the play was erased when Wills Point received a 15-yard penalty. On fourth down Shepard couldn't handle the pass from center and had to fall on the ball on the Tiger 28-yard line.

The Bucks moved down to the Tiger 9-yard line where they had fourth down and 2. Hart tried a pass to Hawpe which was broken up and the Tigers took over with a minute and 8 seconds left in the half.

The Tigers ran out the clock with the score 7 to 0.

In the third quarter White Deer seemed always to have the right player in the right place to stop the Tigers. Wills Point got the ball on their own 19 and 20 twice during that period. Then Deen intercepted a pass on the goal line and ran the ball back to Wills Point's 12. Deen was hurt on this play but did not have to leave the game.

The Tigers ran 3 plays and still needed 10 yards for a first down. Luckily, the quarter ended before Shepard had to punt into the strong wind. Shepard boomed the ball over Randy Elliott's head and down the field 68 yards before Elliott picked it up and returned the ball 3 yards to White Deer's 23 yard line.

The Bucks got a first down on a roughing the kicker penalty, but on the next play Hart's pass was blocked at the line of scrimmage and Kirk Evans snatched the ball as it bounced off the fingers of a Tiger.

Before the period was half over the Tigers had to give the Bucks the ball again. After White Deer had 2 first downs, the Tiger defense stiffened with three players, Wayne Langford, Steve Steadham, and David Teel, hitting Gary Smith for no gain. Sargent was tackled by Tim Provence 2 yards behind the line of scrimmage.

After the punt the Tigers had the ball on their own 18-yard line with 4 minutes and 42 seconds left in the game. Wills Point needed to maintain possession of the ball. Wilson helped the Tiger cause by making 2 first downs. On another series he made 4 yards and Deen added 5 more, but they fell short of the necessary yardage and with less than 2 minutes to go, from the Tiger 49-yard line, Shepard boomed another punt 51 yards.

The punt was fumbled and Dodson recovered for the Tigers on the Bucks 12-yard line with 1:14 left to go. Shepard iced down the game with a twisting and turning TD run. Sockwell added the extra point to give the Tigers a 14 to 0 lead and the Class A State Championship.

Game Statistics
WP
WD
First Downs
7
13
Yards gained rushing
124
182
Yards lost rushing
25
13
No. Passes attempted
4
6
No. Passes completed
2
4
Passes intercepted by
2
0
Yards gained passing
18
38
Punts & average yds.
8-36
4-23
Yds penalized
65
0
Fumbles lost by
1
4
Wills Point
7
0
0
7 -- 14
White Deer
0
0
0
0 -- 0

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Cheering Crowd Greets
Return Of Wills Point Team

WILLS POINT --- Texas' newly-crowned Class A schoolboy football champions-the Wills Point Tigers-returned home Sunday to be greeted by a cheering crowd of fans, friends and families which gathered when their bus arrived.

Head coach Ken Davis said, "The crowd was so large we weren't able to get the bus off the highway in front of the school." The crowd was made up largely of the same fans who had traveled to Wichita Falls Saturday night to cheer their team to a 14-0 championship contest victory over state-finalist White Deer and returned home earlier Sunday.

Wills Point's undefeated march to the 1965 Class A championship was climaxed Saturday night at Wichita Falls with hysteric screams, tears of happiness, hand-shaking, back-patting and a solitary soft-spoken prayer muted by the excitement of the hour.

As the final buzzer sounded the Wills Point delegation-some one thousand strong-stormed the rain-soaked field to congratulate the newly-proclaimed football champions as the team carried their head coach from the field atop their shoulders.

"It's the fulfillment of a life-long dream," declared the head mentor as he rushed onto the field to join his cheering, mud-covered and undefeated team.

"It's all a dream, I can't believe it," explained defensive stalwart Tim Sockwell when asked what he thought about being a part of a State Championship team.

Quarterback Roy Deen who played three quarters of the game with a sprained ankle and badly bruised arm declared, "It's great, it's just great, I can't believe it."

Families, fans and team members of the Tiger's regional foe Hallsville braved the freezing, rainy weather to cheer the Van Zandt team on to the first state championship in the history of the school or any other school in the county.

Those attending the game could find nothing but praise for the Wills Point team which hadn't known defeat this year.

Line coach Dewayne Carter attributed their success to "one big team effort."

Davis said, "It was our best defensive performance of the year-our boys took advantage of their miscues and our offense took over and pushed the ball in."

Continuing he said, "We had a lot of trouble stopping their power sweep-it was the first time we had played a team which set their backfield as the White Deer team did."

Fumble recoveries at the 13 and 11-yard lines led to the only scoring. They otherwise kept the Bucks in check with two pass interceptions and two more recoveries.

"We emphasize stopping the opponent and let the offense take care of itself." Davis said. "When we got the opportunities to score, we scored."

Seniors Donnie Dodson, Wayne Langford, Steve Steadham, Jerry Barnett, Tim Sockwell and David Teel-linemen and linebackers-were highly instrumental in the victory.

"They were as good, if not better than anyone we played this year." Davis noted. "The way it looks, they'll probably be back. I just hope we can make it, too."

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Davis' Short-Sleeved Shirt Was Tiger Trade Mark

WICHITA FALLS---Even the seasoned outdoorsman exposed to the chilling mid-30 degree temperature backed by a stiff biting wind, found his teeth chattering and chill bumps on arms protected by several layers of clothing.

But Ken Davis belied the elements, despite the fact that he wore only a short-sleeved shirt. His charges, the Wills Point Tigers, had walked off with the State Class A football title by shutting out a favored White Deer eleven 14-0 here before an estimated 5,000 fans, more than 1,000 of them from Van Zandt and East Texas.

As Davis walked from the field Saturday night, he said there was only warmth in his body. "Who could be cold after what happened?" he questioned. "In fact, I hardly had time to get cold during the second half, knowing that he had only a seven-point lead against a team favored in all polls and one that could go all the way on any play. And, when we started that drive in the fading minutes of the game, it actually became hot."

But Davis possibly is immune to cold weather. He has worn no other wrap than a short-sleeved white shirt during the entire 1965 season.

Call it superstition or by any other title, the short sleeves have been a trade mark for Coach Davis, who at 27 years possibly is the youngest mentor to win a state football title.

Davis has refused to wear an outer wrap since losing two games during the 1964 season, each one finding him wearing a jacket. The games were a shutout by Canton in regular season play and a bi-district loss to Jefferson.

In two seasons as head coach at Wills Point-Davis has been with the school four years since graduating from Stephen F. Austin College in 1962-the athletic director has compiled an enviable record in 26 wins of 28 outings, 18 of the wins being shutouts.

And shutting out the White Deer squad, which was picked by sports writers and all polls as the winner by from two to 12 points, was one of the goals of which Davis always has dreamed ..... leading a high school team to a state championship.

Davis took over the Tiger fortunes in 1964, following a season during which the team compiled a 4-4-2 record overall and a 3-2-1 in district. In 1964 the Tigers rolled to the District 18-A title, losing only one game during regular play..... that to the Class AA Canton team-and falling before Jefferson, 14-7, in bi-district play.

But Davis will take very little of the credit for the successful effort that has given Van Zandt County its first state championship. Rather Davis seeks to turn the limelight on the Tiger squad "who are the ones that have done the work."

Although Davis will have "fine players" returning next year the loss of nine members of the starting team through graduation will leave him in a building stage.

Among the Tigers saying farewell to high school ball will be Tim Sockwell and Jerry Barnett, 1964 all-district tackle and guard, respectively. Also, leaving will be Roy Deen, who, moving from the running back post in 1964 to the quarterback slot this season, has won the title of "dean of the gridiron" from sports writers covering games of the Tigers.

Deen is one of the few quarterbacks, who enjoys running as much as any other part of the game. Against White Deer, Deen was not as effective in the running department as he has been in previous games. He gained only 25 yards in 11 carries (he gained 121 yards against Three Rivers in a semifinal game). Nevertheless, he completed two of four passes, one of them a 12-yarder for a touchdown. The other was a five-yard toss.

Another face that will be missing next season from the Tigers lineup is John Shepard, who has filled the slot vacated last year by Deen. Shepard is one of the principal targets for Deen passes.

The starting ends of the 1965 Tiger team ended their high school careers this year. They are Donnie Dodson, who Saturday night was responsible for causing a fumble which lead to the second score, and Richard Davis, who scored one of Saturday night's touchdowns with a grab of a Deen toss in the end zone.

Others leaving the Tiger team this year are tackle Danny Mapes, guard Steve Steadham, and center Wayne Langford.

Nevertheless, two returning starters will be a backbone for the defending state champions. They are Snookie Curtis, blocking back, and fullback C.W. Wilson, who was Saturday's outstanding runner with 61 yards in 18 attempts for more than half the Tiger's rushing total.

Other seniors on the squad include center David Laney, guards Bruce Miracle and David Teel, and end Wayne Lusk.

Davis and his Tigers will be a marked group next season as they try for a repeat of the 1965 gridiron effort.

They were being looked over Saturday night by other teams, one of them from East Texas. The entire Hallsville squad bused to Wichita Falls to take in the game and watch the Tigers in action.

But whether it is hot or cold next year, Coach Davis still will be walking the sidelines in a short-sleeved white shirt.

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WILLS POINT SALUTE

Best in State (Class A)
Merits Rousing Tribute

WILLS POINT---In 1877 a 300 man army from Canton marched on Wills Point during the infamous Van Zandt County Courthouse War.

And that was about the ultimate in excitement around here until Thursday night when more than 1,000 football-mad Wills Pointers gathered at the high school gymnasium to pay tribute to "our Tigers."

For those un-informed souls, Wills Point has the only football team in the universe which is the Texas Class A state champions.

FORMER PRODUCER

And befitting the occasion, the Wills Point Chamber of Commerce put together a rousing "Salute to the Tigers." To stage it all the talents of one Gordon Wynne Jr. were utilized.

Mr. Wynne only recently returned here from New York where as a producer he had staged such things as the Hallmark Hall of Fame and the Judy Garland Show.

While the beaming Wills Point football team sat on stage the beaming Wills Point citizenry applauded and cheered. The band played. The cheerleaders yelled. The majorettes twirled.

Mayor Hubert L. Kinney read a proclamation. Van Zandt County Judge Truett Mayo read a proclamation.

Mr. Wynne read a wire of congratulations from Stan Musial, consultant to the President on physical fitness. The wire was sent on behalf of the President.

 

TOWN PAINTED

Almost as frenzied were the preparations for the show. For example, there was Paula Furrh and Water Longacre, a couple of teen-agers who literally painted the town.

However, instead of red, they used blue and white paint and modestly proclaimed "the best in Class A football" on every downtown show window.

The volunteer department's fire engine rolled out to provide ladders for the hanging of a sign over a furniture store.

A sign even adorned the staid old fountain at the entrance to downtown. Everybody on Wills Point streets grinned. Everybody waved.

 

MEDALS PRESENTED

Highlight of Thursday night's salute was presentation of state championship medals to team members by Coach Ken Davis---the most popular fellow in town.

Also presented was $2,000 in awards to the coaches and band director John Henry. The money was donated by Wills Point citizens.

Also, noted were wires of congratulations from the Dallas Cowboys and coaches and politicians ranging from Gov. John Connally to Sens. John Tower and Ralph Yarborough.

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1965 Tiger's Season Stats

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Athletes Receive Awards
At Special Assembly


Monday, March 7, saw the climax for the 1965-66 football team, coaches and managers when sweaters, jackets and blankets were awarded the first State Championship team in the history of Wills Point school.

Coach Ken A. Davis made the presentations at a special called assembly in the auditorium Tuesday afternoon.

The athletes were given a choice of a jacket, sweater or blanket and the following awards were made: Sweaters, John Shepard, Bruce Miracle, Jerry Barnett, Danny Mapes, Richard Davis and Donnie Dodson.

Blankets went to Roy Deen, David Laney, Wayne Langford, Steve Steadham, and Tim Sockwell.

Jackets were awarded to John Holt, Herschel LyBrand, Johnny Barnett, C.W. Wilson, Mickey Robertson, Tim Provence, Charles Curtis, Jr., Tom Castleberry, David Teel, Wayne Lusk, Joe Dempsey, Mike Whiteside, Danny Teel, Kirk Evans, Kenneth Thomas, Jerry Lawrence, Robert Hindman, and John Deen.

Team manager receiving jackets were John Conn, Troy D. Roberts, Butch Shofner, Dickie Mullins, and Olin Lindsey, Jr.

Coaches Davis, Wendell Boozer and Dewayne Carter each received blazers.

The jackets are oxford gray with leather sleeves. They are lettered with white and have gold footballs. The sleeves bear a state champ patch of white with blue lettering.

The blue blankets have the boys' names and numbers at the bottom, Class A State Champs, 1965 on the top, all in white lettering, with a blue W on a white background.

The sweaters are gray with a blue W on white, and also have the state champ patch of white with blue inscription.

Seniors who lettered had a star. On the blankets it was gold and on the sweaters, white. All reserves had an R.

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