Last week saw one LeFlore County rivalry on the football field with Panama visiting Pocola. Tonight, another one will take place.
The Bokoshe Tigers will visit the Arkoma Mustangs for a 7:30 p.m. District C-4 contest tonight.
The Mustangs (7-1, 4-1 in district play) lost for the first time last week, dropping a 84-38 decision to Webbers Falls.
“I think we've been ready to get back out there since Tuesday,” Arkoma Coach Mark Weatherton said. “When we watched the Webbers Falls film, the kids were embarrassed in the way they played. They're ready, and they want to get out there and give a lot better effort than last week.”
There's still a lot for Arkoma to achieve.
“We talked about that to the kids,” Weatherton said. “We still have a lot to play for. Two more wins will give us nine wins, which will be a school record for wins in season. One more win will get us a home playoff game, and I think we've only had two home playoff games in school history. The loss ruined our district championship hopes and an undefeated season, but we still have a lot to still play for.”
With the exception of the game, both teams' players are good friends with each other.
“It's a big rivalry game for us,” Weatherton said. “We're close and all the kids know each other. They go to vo-tech together. The last three games have been close. They beat us by four three years ago, then we beat them by four two years ago and beat them by six points last year. I expect them to give their best effort, and I expect their kids to be ready to play. We have to be focused.”
As for the Tigers (1-6, 0-5), they are just trying to get through this rough season and look to the future. But a win over their rivals would help that out.
“We're hoping for the best,” first-year Bokoshe Coach Tyler Massey said. We're just in a bad way right now with injuries and ineligibilities. We started the (last week's Bluejacket) game with 12 players, and ended the game with 10. It's frustrating. I just hope we're better next year. Hopefully, next year will be better because they'll be able to come in here and have spring football and have a summer program."