MHS, DeQueen set to kick off '09 season
The Monticello football team will help kick off the 2009 season Monday, August 31, when the Billies take on DeQueen at Arkansas-Pine Bluff's Golden Lions Stadium.
The game, scheduled for a 5:30 p.m. kickoff, will open Simmons First/Hootens.com Kickoff Week and mark the beginning of the Arkansas high school season. It will feature a matchup of highly ranked teams, as well as two of the state's marquee recruits.
DeQueen finished 11-2 last season and advanced to the Class 4A quarterfinals. Monticello finished 10-3, won the 5A Southeast title and came up just short of playing for a state title after a one-point loss to Helena-West Helena in the semifinals. Both teams are ranked No. 2 by Hooten's in their respective classifications.
DeQueen running back / defensive end Greg White has committed to the University of Missouri, while Monticello wingback / safety Brishen Mathews has committed to Ole Miss.
MHS coach Van Pascal said the Leopards have much in common with his Billies. DeQueen's offense is very similar to Monticello's, he said, and both squads enter the season with state title aspirations.
"It should be a good ballgame," Paschal said. "They're hard-nosed kids, and Coach (Chris) Vereen does a good job with them. They'll do well this year. Hopefully we can be just a little bit better than they are."
Simmons First/Hootens.com Kickoff Week will feature six games in all, three doubleheaders hosted by UAPB, Van Buren High School and Henderson State University in Arkadelphia. Star City and DeWitt will face off in Monday's nightcap at UAPB.
Tickets are $7 and are good for both games. They're available from any football player, cheerleader, band member or pom squad member. They're also available at Union Bank, the Monticello superintendent's office, Amy Brunson at MHS or Bernadette Carmical at 723-1234.
Tickets will be available at the gate, but MHS fans are encouraged to buy theirs in advance. Only advance tickets will benefit the Monticello School District.
Kickoff Week continues Tuesday, September 1 in Van Buren, when Cedarville plays Pocola, Okla., at 5:30 p.m., followed by Booneville and Mena.
The final night is Thursday, September 3, in Arkadelphia. Bearden and Camden Harmony Grove play at 5:30 p.m. followed by 2008 state title game participants Fountain Lake and Junction City.
<em>Information obtained from Simmons First/Hootens.com press release.</em>