Lady Cats split district games

The Fruitvale Lady Cats began District 18-2A play last week, taking on teams from Miller Grove and Yantis. Fruitvale opened play against Miller Grove Sept. 22 by falling just short in a three-set loss, 25-20, 25-16, 25-21.

Coach Jerry Ptak stated, “The girls played hard, we had some young players step up and played well. Alex Mobley stepped in for injured Mattie Davis and did a great job, she did not miss a single serve.”

Callie Harris had seven kills and a block, Abby Williams had seven assists, Lulu Campbell had five assists and one kill, and Lauren Brown had one kill and one block.

The Lady Cats returned to action Sept. 26, traveling to Yantis and returning with a 25-19, 25-14, 21-25, 25-20 victory.

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Bulldogs dominate Indians in rivalry game

The Van Vandals and Edgewood Bulldogs each logged impressive wins during the fourth week, knocking off Palestine and Grand Saline respectively. The week proved to be less kind to the rest of Van Zandt County’s football teams with Canton, Fruitvale, Grand Saline and Wills Point all coming up short on the scoreboard.

Through four weeks of the season, Van currently sits at 4-0, Edgewood is 3-1, Canton is 2-2, and Fruitvale, Grand Saline and Wills Point are all 0-4. 


The Canton Eagles traveled to Waxahachie Sept. 22, looking to improve to 3-1 on the season with a win over the Life Oak Mustangs. Turnovers would be the story of the game, however, with four costly Canton turnovers leading directly to a 20-14 loss.

Life Waxahachie intercepted two Canton passes in the first quarter, including a pick-six by Gage Mayfield to take a 13-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.


Vandal defense shines in win over Crandall, 34-14

In a season filled with impressive offensive numbers, it was the defense that shined the brightest for the undefeated Van Vandals Friday night as they pulled away in the second half to open District 8-4A, Division I play with a 34-14 victory over the upset-minded Crandall Pirates in Crandall.

Coach Jared Moffatt’s Vandals are now 5-0 overall, but more importantly, they are now 1-0 in District 8-4A, Division I competition tied with the Kaufman Lions and the Athens Hornets at the top of the district standings.

Two of the three co-leaders will go head-to-head Friday at 7:30 p.m. when the Vandals host Athens at Van’s Memorial Stadium in the only contest featuring a Van Zandt County team.

Against the Pirates, the Vandal defense forced five Crandall turnovers including a 15-yard scoop-and-score by Vandal linebacker Beckett Preston early in the fourth quarter that put the game out of reach.


Tiger netters dominate Mt. Pleasant

The Wills Point Tiger tennis team dominated its home court in impressive fashion, improving their record to 6-1 overall with a 19-0 sweep of Mt. Pleasant Sept. 14.

Individual match results included:

-Chase Daniell def. Dakota Elswick, 8-1

-Kash Adams def. Jose Guiterrez, 8-1

-Jack Johns def. Yair Long, 8-1

-Josh Schreffler def. Ronaldo Zuniga, 9-7

-Aidan Phillips def. Johann Sanchez, 8-2

-Justin McGough def. Julian Coronado, 8-6

-Austin Etheridge def. Edgar Cordova, 8-0

-Daniell/Phillips def. Elswick/Guiterrez, 6-1, 6-3

-Adams/Johns Def. Sanchez/Zonga, 6-1, 6-0

-Schreffler/Etheridge def. Cordova/Long, 6-2, 6-4

-Maddie Booth def. Jenn Figueroga, 8-2

-Claire Hiler def. Avera Ayers, 8-2

-Hope Turner def. Pauline Muniz, 8-3

-Hannah Gern def. Cheyenne Clark, 8-3

-Maddie Hiler def. Stacey Henderson, 8-2

-Katelyn Bryant def. KeKe Craddock, 8-0


Mike Wheeler of Canton wins in football contest

With a winning percentage of 85, Mike Wheeler of Canton is the winner of Football Contest No. 3 in the Van Zandt News.


Wheeler wins $50 in merchandise coupons redeemable at the participating merchants on the contest pages.


Contest winners are asked to call 903-567-4000 to make arrangements to pick up their coupons.


The contest pages for Contest No. 5 can be found in the middle of the sports section in this issue of the News.


The rules of the contest are as follows:


In each advertiser’s space on the page is the name of the two teams (high school, college or pro) who will oppose each other in the coming week


You should circle the name of the team you believe will win in each ad.


The person selecting the most correct games for that week will be the winner.



Lady Indians top Mineola, Scurry-Rosser

The Grand Saline Lady Indians propelled themselves into a second-place tie in District 12-3A play last week, winning matches against both Mineola and Scurry-Rosser to improve to 3-1 overall.

Grand Saline opened last week with a match in Mineola Sept. 16, scoring a four-set win over the Lady Jackets. Lady Indian coaches recognized senior Mallory O’Donnell as the team’s Player of the Game for the match after she finished with 18 digs and seven kills overall.

Grand Saline returned to action Sept. 19 to take on a Scurry-Rosser team that finished 13-1 overall in district play in 2016 en route to the District 12-3A title.

Coach Kelly Ridge’s team came out red-hot against the Wildcats, easily taking the first set 25-19. Grand Saline’s stellar play continued in the second set with the Lady Indians outpointing Scurry-Rosser 25-21 to take a commanding two sets to none lead.


Lady Cats to open district play

The Fruitvale Lady Cats wrapped up non-district play last week, sweeping past Cumberland Sept. 15 before falling just short against 4A Pittsburg Sept. 19.

Fruitvale made it look easy against Cumberland cruising to a three-set win. Callie Harris and Mattie Davis both had seven kills each. Lulu Campbell finished with a team-high 12 assists and Abby Williams added nine assists.

The Lady Cats hosted Pittsburg Sept. 19, falling 28-26, 22-25, 25-23, 25-15 to the Lady Pirates. Abby Williams finished play with five kills and seven assists, Callie Harris totaled nine kills, Lulu Campbell finished with 11 assists and two kills and Mattie Davis added seven kills.

Coach Jerry Ptak stated, “The girls played hard and just missed out on a couple of plays that could have gone either way. It was a good match to get ready for district play this Friday (Sept. 22).


Vandals stay red-hot with win

Van Zandt County football teams continued with non-district play last week, posting a combined 3-3 record overall during the season’s third week. Canton, Edgewood and Van all picked up wins with the Vandals improving to a county-best 3-0 overall with a 41-17 win over Lindale.

Fruitvale, Grand Saline and Wills Point all enter the fourth week of the season still looking for their first week of the season.

Through three weeks of the season, Van currently sits at 3-0, Canton and Edgewood are 2-1, and Fruitvale, Grand Saline and Wills Point are all 0-3. 


The Canton Eagles tallied their second consecutive win in as many weeks Sept. 15, jumping out to a big lead and never looking back in a 35-20 home win over the visiting Mabank Panthers. The 15-point win by the Eagles was the largest in the series since a 46-17 win by Canton during the 2014 season.


Five country teams compete at Canton Invitational

Twenty cross country teams from across the East Texas area, including Canton, Edgewood, Fruitvale, Van and Wills Point, traveled to Canton Sept. 16, competing in this year's Canton Invitational Cross Country Meet.

Varsity Boys Results

Canton was the top team finisher among county schools, placing third overall behind Kaufman and Mabank. Wills Point finished fifth, Edgewood ninth, Van 11th, and Fruitvale did not qualify for the team competition with only one runner in the field.

Individual results included:

-Canton: Jonathan Bourquin, 14th, 18:20.66; Garrett Stapleton, 19th, 18:40.11; Wilson Null, 24th, 18:55.96; Kevin Nixon, 29th, 19:19.46; and Gage Bullard, 40th, 19:55.45

-Edgewood: Nobel Smith, 4th, 17:34.91; Brodie Prather, 34th, 19:38.78; Tanner Patterson, 54th, 20:56.72; Nash Heddin, 57th, 21:19.37; and Emanuel Fernandez, 58th, 21:20.42

-Fruitvale: Jereamiah Davis, 77th, 25:58.51


Vandals celebrate Homecoming by outlasting Palestine, 49-28

In a contest that saw both teams struggle with penalties, the Van Vandals showed more firepower and determination in the end as they broke a 28-28 deadlock with three unanswered second half touchdown drives to post a hard fought 49-28 Homecoming victory over the Palestine Wildcats Friday night to remain undefeated.

Coach Jared Moffatt’s Vandals concluded their non-district schedule at 4-0 as they now prepare to open District 8-4A, Division I competition against the Crandall Pirates Friday in a 7:30 p.m. kickoff in Crandall.

During pre-game ceremonies at Van’s Memorial Stadium prior to kick off between Van and Palestine, Taylor Tallant was named as the 2017 Van High School Homecoming Queen and Jake Kellam was selected as the 2017 VHS Homecoming King.

The matchup featuring the Vandals and the Wildcats saw both teams combine for 41 first downs and 791 yards of total offense.


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