By Cody Johnson
The Newcastle Racers rolled through Pauls Valley on their own field last Friday with a 47-7 win.
"The offense and defense executed really well," head coach Keith Bolles said.
Led by starting senior quarterback Casey Freeman, the offense marched over Pauls Valley's defense, scoring three touchdowns in the first quarter putting the Racers ahead 21-0.
Senior running back Zach Bergt scored the first touchdown of the night on a 25-yard break away run. A 19-yard pass from Freeman to senior running back Kyle Rice followed soon after.
Driving down the field towards the end of the first quarter, Freeman ran a 1-yard quarterback sneak up the middle for the third touchdown. Sophomore Jose Ramirez kicked three field goals for extra points.
In the second quarter, the Racers didn’t slow down. A 32-yard pass to junior wide-receiver Gavin Garner from Freeman and another extra-point kick from Ramirez continued the Newcastle dominated game. Bergt ran in another touchdown from 61 yards out, however the extra point attempt was no good. This put the score at the end of the half at 34-0.
In the second half, Newcastle began rotating out their starting lineup after Freeman hit senior running back Whispern Williams with a 15-yard touchdown pass followed by another Ramirez kick for an extra point.
"They went in and did not want them to score, and I was really proud of them," Bolles said about the second-string players making a defensive stop ten yards shy of the end zone.
Pauls Valley was able to score one touchdown and extra point towards the end of the third quarter, however neither team put any points on the scoreboard in the fourth quarter.
"Overall for the first night and having missed our second scrimmage, I was really pleased with our execution," Bolles said.
The Racers will return to action on Friday at home against the Tuttle Tigers at 7:30 p.m.
Tuttle is coming off a 27-39 home-field defeat that was handed to them by Blanchard last Friday in their season opener.
By Cody Johnson
The Newcastle High School boys and girls cross country team traveled to Purcell last Thursday for their season-opener. The boys' team won first place with a team score of 52. The girls' team took third with a team score of 99.
In the girls' division, runners ran a 1.3 miles course and there were 98 runners. Allie Shumard won first with a time of 9:04. Sydney Cannon took eighteenth place with a time of 10:22. Aubrey Sanders followed in nineteenth place two seconds after Sydney.
In the boys' division, 120 runners ran a 2 miles course. Nick Tate was the fastest Racer coming in third with a time of 10:57. Austin Hilderbrand ran the course in 11:30 and came in eighth place. Hunter Palacois was hot on Austin’s heels coming in at 11:52 and in eleventh place.
Josh McFarland came in thirteenth place with a time of 11:54 while Joey Rice placed seventeenth with a time of 12:01.
On Friday the High School teams will travel to Norman for their next race at 9:30 a.m.
The Junior High Lady Racers are out to a blazing start this season. Thus far the Lady Racers have compiled 12 wins, 2 losses, and 1 tie. The Junior High Racers started practicing at the beginning of July in anticipation for a good season. Under newly named Head Coach Chance Scott and new assistant Casey Carolan the Lady Racers prepared for the upcoming season. The Racers have 23 players on the roster including six returning starters from last years team.
In the first outing of the year, the Lady Racers played in the Irving Festival in Norman, where they defeated Noble, Whittier, and Irving. They also had a tie with Longfellow. The following Monday the Lady Racers suffered their first loss of the young season at the hands of the Tuttle Lady Tigers. The next day the team traveled to Purcell to play a very tough game, but were victorious in their efforts. " This was one of the most exciting games I have been involved in, in my 15 years of coaching," said Head Coach Chance Scott. With their spirits still riding high the Lady Racers next challenge would be the Lady Lions from Blanchard. The Lions tried to rally late in the game but the Racers were able to hold on for the win.
The next challenge for the Lady Racers would be the Tuttle Tournament. The Racers took out the OKC Lady Broncos in the first round. Then in the second round the Racers had to go extra innings to beat Mustang North. In the third round the Lady Bobcats were next on the bracket. The Lady Racers emerged victorious once again. Then in the semifinals Newcastle lost to South Moore. In the third place game the Lady Racers bounced back and beat a very tough Dale squad.
The following week the JH Racers traveled to Lexington where they collected yet a another win. Then continuing the hot streak they took wins over Bridge Creek and Lindsay later in the week.
Three ladies share time in the circle for the Racers, Brianna Jackson, Taryn O’Brien, and Mackenzie Wagoner. "It's a rare and fun time when you can have three pitchers in Junior High that you can in the circle and know you can compete with anyone." stated Coach Scott.
By Cody Johnson
The Newcastle Lady Racers fastpitch team went 2-0 last Thursday and Friday as they traveled down to Lindsay for the Lindsay Festival.
Newcastle began the festival by playing Ninnekah at 11:15 a.m. on Thursday. They rolled through the Ninnekah Owls 17-0.
The next game of the day came at 1:15 p.m. when the Lady Racers faced off against the Lindsay Leopards. Newcastle blew away the Leopards in that face off 6-0.
When the Lady Racers returned on Friday the rains came with them. Their Friday game of the Lindsay festival was canceled leaving them with a 2-0 record.
The Lady Racers will travel next weekend to Bixby for an all-day Thursday, Friday and Saturday tournament.
The Newcastle Racers football team continues to prepare for the upcoming season with a scrimmage on Thursday at home against Tecumseh and Mount Saint Mary. This will be the second and final scrimmage the Racers play in their pre-season schedule.
Last week Newcastle took on the Bethany Bronchos and the Harrah Panthers in a scrimmage on the Bronchos' field.
"For our first scrimmage, I was very pleased," Head Coach Keith Bolles said. "We have a pretty experienced team."
"It was really good for us from a defensive standpoint. We got to see people adjust and we got to see some things that we need to work on this week so we are ready for our next opponent," Bolles said.
Bethany showed the Racers a spread offensive lineup, not showing a running back most of the time. Harrah showed an opposite style offense with two backs on the field and double tight ends.
"Offensively, I felt like we did some really good things. Casey threw the ball well and receivers caught the ball well. Obviously they brought some different type sets that we haven’t seen a lot on or worked on so that’s some stuff we have drawn up now and gives us an opportunity to work on," Bolles said.
The scrimmage was set up with the Racers facing off 10 plays offense and 10 plays defense against each opponent. Newcastle played 30 snaps in a row and did not have any player cramp or have to come out, a fact Bolles attributes to their conditioning.
With seven players starting for their third year and 24 seniors, the Racers have pushed forward working hard in preparation for the season. They spend their last hour of the school day lifting and working on their cardio.
Once school lets out, their football practice begins. Having already taken care of cardio, they only have one focus on the field…. playing football.
Newcastle's first game of the season will be on September 5 at Pauls Valley at 7:30 p.m.
The Newcastle Lady Racers fastpitch team took on ninth-ranked Mount Saint Mary Monday defeating them 1- 0 in the eighth inning.
A walk off double by Kindle Nelms hit Lainee Grider into home to win in the second extra inning. Cerny only allowed three hits the entire game and struck out 17.
This win along with two wins from last Saturday bumped the Lady Racers up in the state rankings from 20 to 11.
The Lady Racers traveled to Shawnee last Saturday for the Hall of Fame Shootout and did not take any mercy on their opponents.
"Emily is getting better and better, she struck out 27 Saturday," Head Coach Mike Crossley said.
Led on the mound by Emily Cerny, Newcastle took down Elk City 1-0 and one of the top ranked teams in 5A, Claremore 5-0.
Next the Lady Racers will travel to Lindsay Thursday for a two-game lineup with the Ninnekah Owls at 11:15 a.m. and the Lindsay Leopards at 1:45 p.m.
By Cody Johnson
The Lady Racers Volleyball team played their third match of the 2014 season at Crossing Christian on Monday losing in the fifth game.
"We play the best three out of five and went to the fifth game and lost," Head Coach Melissa Johnson said.
The Lady Racers lost the first two games by several points but came back to win the third game 25-6 and 25-17 fourth game. This took the match into the fifth and final game.
The score was 14-15 with the Lady Racers serving the final point. Newcastle's server was called stepping over the line during her serve. This penalty gave Crossing Christian the final point they needed to win 14-16.
"In the third and fourth game we played fantastic. In the fifth game we played pretty good to win, but you know," Johnson said, "It was bitter."
After a School Board decision last year, this is the first year Newcastle offers volleyball as a sport. This is part of Superintendent Tony O'Brien's vision to grow the school district academically and athletically according to Johnson. "He has really been a big supporter of having volleyball here."
"We are playing against teams that have played for ten years," Johnson said. "Our team 7-12 grade, we have been spending hours and hours in the summer time getting ready for volleyball because it’s the first time ever. If you went into the gym, they are doing fantastic. We have tremendous girl athletes here at Newcastle."
Each volleyball match consists of either best two out of three games or best three out of five games. Each game consists of the first team to obtain 25 points and to be ahead of their opponents by at least two points. If the match goes into the final game, the game is the first to obtain 15 points and win by two or more points ahead of their opponents.
The Lady Racers hit the road on Thursday returning to action at Community Christian with ninth grade, junior varsity, and varsity starting at 4:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m., and 6:30 p.m. respectively. They will also return to Community Christian on Saturday for a tournament.
By Cody Johnson
The Newcastle Varsity Lady Racer's Fast-pitch team lost their first head-to-head game of the 2014 season 0-8 on Monday at home against the Tuttle Tigers.
With E. Cerny on the mound pitching the entire game, the Lady Racers looked strong on the field, but a couple two-run innings and one four-run inning left the Lady Racers behind in the fifth inning 8-0 with a run-rule finish.
In the top of the first inning, Tuttle's first batter struck out by Cerny's pitches. The second Tiger up to bat scored a triple, which was followed up by an in the park homerun.
Unshaken by the two scored runs, Cerny struck another batter out to put an end to the Tigers early lead.
With the Racers up to bat in the bottom of the first, they didn't waste anytime getting on base. Crossley bunted her way on first but was forced out at second base when Vandiver bunted her way onto first. With two balls hit from Cerny and Workman to the outfield that were caught by Tigers, the Lady Racers ended the first inning 0-2.
In the second inning, Newcastle held off Tuttle but was unable to hit any runner home.
The third inning was when the Tigers pulled away. A single by the third Tiger batter hit two runners home and was followed by a stolen second base. A double and a single hit two more runners home before the Lady Racers were able to mount a defense, which obtained the final two outs via strikeout.
Bottom of the third, the Lady Racers' first three batters hit a good piece of the ball but were either caught or forced out at first base.
In the fourth inning the Tigers hit two more runners home. Trying to stage a comeback, Newcastle spent the next two innings smacking the ball, but the Tigers managed to hold off the assault, which left the Lady Racers run-ruled 0-8 at the end of the fifth inning.
With a storm blowing in, the junior varsity Fast Pitch game, set for immediately following the varsity game, was cancelled. The Lady Racers return to action Thursday against the Purcell Lady Dragons at 5:30 p.m. in Newcastle.
By Cody Johnson
The annual Pigskin Press Pass will be available on Aug. 28 with in-depth details about the 2014 Newcastle Racers and Bridge Creek Bobcats football season.
This year’s magazine includes insider looks at the Racer’s summer training program and camps, as well as each specific area of play. Looking to take district by storm and moving up to class 4A, the Racers will take on new opponents this year. Look at the Racers’ competition with the Pigskin Press Pass’s overview of each new school’s football history.
The 2014 issue also includes an in-depth view of the Bridge Creek Bobcats and their well-seasoned roster. Spreading their opponents out in a shotgun offense and changing their passing to running ratios to around 60-40 the Bobcats hold a tough lineup for the 2014 season.
With a new look and design the Pigskin Press Pass has more information about the community’s football players than ever before. Next year the magazine will expand even more to look at Blanchard’s pigskin players.
Copies of the Pigskin Press Pass can be found at newsstands with The Newcastle Pacer or extra copies can be picked up at The Pacer office 120 NE. 2nd St. # 102.
By Max Terrell
Boys Basketball at Newcastle will see a shift in leadership with the hiring of new head coach Kevin Johnson, who looks to not only bring success to the athletes but also develop a new attitude for Racer Basketball.
Johnson started his coaching career at Haskell in Lawrence, Kan. as a graduate assistant after playing his college basketball there. Johnson also coached in Colorado as an assistant and spent some time in Ketchikan, Alaska as a head coach where he developed the future NBA player Damen Bell-Holter and took his team to two state championship games.
After several other coaching jobs, Johnson landed a job at a major 5A school in Lebanon, Oregon where he helped improve the program.
Now after 20 years of coaching experience, Johnson feels at home back in Oklahoma coaching with attitude and creating a physical mindset for Racers basketball.
"I'm pretty straight forward," said Johnson. "I tell everyone; at 5'10 and a 180 pounds, there are a whole bunch of guys out there like that; so to win, you better have some sort of edge about you as a competitor that can separate you [from other players]. That's how I’ve always coached. I love my job and I love teaching kids."
Bringing a new attitude and developing the young Racers is exactly what Johnson is looking to do in his time here. He wants to develop, mature and see the athletes excel beyond what they are expected to do, he said.
One of the biggest changes that may come from the coaching change is the way the program will work to develop the youngest players in Newcastle up to the high school athletes.
Everywhere he has coached, the program has been cultivated to teach the same basketball system from second grade, up to the high school. The new coach has already begun to talk to the Newcastle All Sports Association to bring them on board with his program to help develop the younger athletes.
Johnson is a systematic coach and believes that the younger they can get the students adjusted to the new system the more it will benefit the entire Newcastle basketball program, he said. There will also be a new focus on the transition game with the players running up and down the court and dictating the pace of the games while still putting players in the best spots to succeed.
Johnson feels that the players have adapted well to the transition of a new coach and a whole new system during the summer, but there have been some challenges along the way.
"I think the transition has been fairly smooth," Johnson said. "I wish it would have happened a little sooner, so we could have gotten some more coaches established and got some more things for our younger kids.
Our Freshman up have played quite a few games this summer and got some practice times in. But coming in later and not having a staff in place hurt me a little bit because I couldn’t get my seventh or sixth graders coming in."
The emphasis will be on defense with coach Johnson and will change from more zone on the court to a more man to man defense, he said. This will keep them accountable and all eleven players are expected to be responsible for their roles on the rotation.
Johnson has an aggressive defensive mind; planning to play full court basketball and trapping constantly.
"We’re going to play full court as much as we can with the teams we can," Johnson said. "We’re going to do a lot of trapping and do a lot of jumping. We are not going to let other teams dictate the tempo on offense, and the minute that we do, someone else will be coming into the game."
He looks for the team to not rely on one or two people but to play team basketball and get everyone involved to one day reach their goal and have the mindset of a playoff team,
"The goal is to get to the state championship, and if that’s not the goal, then we are in the wrong place," said Johnson.