ORANGE GROVE, Texas — Orange Grove is the only place you can find organized high school football practice in Jim Wells County.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Alice, Ben Bolt and Premont have delayed the start of their fall athletic season.
But the Orange Grove school board voted to give the Bulldogs the green light in terms of practicing. And here at two-a-days, the coaching staff and trainers are keeping a close watch on their athletes.
In fact, players have been issued these unique cloth splash shields tied to the bottom of their of their helmets.
"We are also not in as much of a hot spot as some others say Alice,” Orange Grove football coach Mark Delpercia said. “Even though we are very close to them, we didn't have the numbers in Orange Grove that Alice did. So that gave them the motivation to say we can roll with this.”
And here they are, preparing to play as a Class 3A school after dropping down this year from Class 4A. The players are excited, especially when you consider they had no idea if there would even be a football season in 2020.
“At the start of the summer, we were really unsure about what the plan was going to be and what was all going on,” Orange Grove wide receiver Conner Eulenfeld said. “But now that's it here, we are rolling and we're not going to stop.”
And the excitement of their new classification has ratcheted up that level of excitement among the Bulldogs even more.
"Even though we dropped down to 3A we are still going to up our game,” Orange Grove wide receiver Jake Marsh said. “We don't play up or down to our opponents. We play our game every week.”