HS Football: The Woodlands vs Grand Oaks preview

By: JD Hurd II
| Published 11/11/2020

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THE WOODLANDS, TX -- Fresh off of their first district varsity win in school history, the Grand Oaks Grizzlies (1-1 / 5-1) will return to Woodforest Bank Stadium for their first-ever meeting with The Woodlands Highlanders (2-0 / 3-2).

Thursday’s matchup between the Highlanders and Grizzlies will be a clash of styles offensively. Grand Oaks is a run-heavy team based out of a single-wing formation. It’s an offense that has been able to give most teams trouble so far this season. Through six games, Grand Oaks has averaged 37 runs a game at 8.6 yards per rush, scoring 47 points per game.

However, those numbers have decreased significantly in district 13-6A games. The Grizzlies are down to just 4.3 YPR and 18 points a game through their first two district games. Although they haven’t been consistently explosive, Grand Oaks still forces opponents to play disciplined defense, because the big-play threat is always there.

The Woodlands offense is the typical spread offense with a run/pass split that leans more towards running the football but features a solid amount of passing as well. The Highlanders are averaging 37 points per game in district play, with 6.4 YPR, along with passing for 193 yards per game.

Both squads possess the firepower to put up big numbers, so all eyes will be on the defenses to see who will succeed at forcing their opponent out of their comfort zone. The Woodlands defense is giving up 18 PPG in district play, while the Grand Oaks defense is allowing 23 PPG. One area where Grand Oaks excels is winning the turnover/takeaway battle. The Grizzlies have 18 takeaways so far this season, including 10 interceptions.

If the Grizzlies want to pull off their second-straight upset, defense and special teams will be where the game is won. If the Highlanders want their fourth 3-0 start in district play in five seasons, an early lead that forces Grand Oaks away from their run game will be the gameplan. Prediction: The Woodlands 42, Grand Oaks 20

Thursday’s game will be a Woodlands Online Livestream sponsored by Team Sinisi and RE/MAX. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

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