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In the Heart of the Blackland Divide

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Plowboys Fall to Miles, 29-7

Kolten Hope makes a tackle as Jake Gonzales moves in.
The Plowboys had another rough outing Friday evening, losing to Miles 29-7. The loss was disappointing in that much of it was self-inflicted, especially in the first half, as untimely penalties and turnovers killed drives and kept the team from gaining any offensive rhythm or momentum.  

The Plowboys lost an opportunity for a quick touchdown on their first play from scrimmage when an open receiver was unable to bring in a long pass at the Miles 32. Then, after advancing to the Miles 40 on a successful fake punt, a 15-yard penalty killed the drive, and Miles took over. They moved down the field on a nine-play drive that ended when QB Brayden Dunlap went 10 yards for the TD. The extra-point kick was good, and with 4:08 left in the quarter, the Bulldogs were up 7-0. The Plowboys’ next series ended when a Miles defender intercepted an errant pass and returned it 36 yards for another Miles TD. The extra-point attempt, a fake kick, was successful, and with 2:46 left in the quarter, the score was 15-0. Another interception on the next Plowboy possession gave the ball back to Miles, and on the first play of the second quarter, Dunlap ran it in from the 9-yard line, and the Bulldogs were ahead 22-0. For the next three quarters, the game was essentially even, but the damage had already been done. The score at halftime was 22-0.

After a scoreless third quarter, the Bulldogs struck again early in the fourth. From the Plowboy 40, Miles QB Dunlap completed a pass to the Plowboy 20, and on the next play, he ran it in for the score, putting his team ahead, 29-0. Later in the quarter, the Plowboys mounted an 8-play drive that started on their own 32 and ended with a touchdown when QB Antonio Aguayo hit Kolten Hope in the end zone on a 25-yard pass. Aguayo kicked the extra point, making the final score 29-7, as Miles then kept the ball until the clock ran out.

For the game, Miles had 11 first downs to the Plowboys 10, and Roscoe played hard throughout. However, the Plowboys had 3 turnovers to Miles’s 1 and 16 penalties for a whopping 145 yards, which was 34 more than their entire offensive output of 115 yards. Last week, they had 116 penalty yards against Stamford, so they must become more disciplined if they hope to win future games.

Aguayo completed 11 of 16 passes for 107 yards and 1 TD along with 2 interceptions. Hope led the receivers with 3 catches for 42 yards, followed by Zeke Murphy’s 2 for 19 yards. Hope, Aguayo, and Murphy also led the defense along with Diego Vela and Jordan Blain.

Scoring by quarters:
                                       1          2          3          4          T

            Miles                15         7          0          7         29
            Plowboys          0         0          0          7           7


Plowboys vs. Christoval in Christoval

This Friday the Plowboys take on Coach Casey Otho’s Christoval Cougars in an away game.

Christoval is currently 12th in the Texas 2A-II rankings. They are 2-1 so far this year with a season-opening loss (36-21) to undefeated and state-ranked No. 5 Wink, followed by wins over 3A-II Grape Creek (23-18) and 3A-II Sonora (22-14). Texas Football magazine predicts them to win District 14-2A-II as they return 6 starters on offense and defense from last year’s 10-2 area finalists. They are led by QB Brayden Wilcox and WR Beau Jolly on offense and DB Wilcox and LB Ketcher Joiner on defense.  

Kickoff in Christoval is at 7:00pm

PLEASE NOTE: If you are planning to go to the game, you must purchase your ticket in advance at the Roscoe Collegiate High School office. They are $4 each and will not be sold at the door. You will need a wristband to enter the game. For more information, call 325-766-3327.



The Roscoe City Council held its regular monthly meeting in City Hall Thursday evening. They heard updates on public works from the City Manager and the August Police Report from the Chief of Police, approved some action items and tabled others.

City Manager Cody Thompson reported that the pump at the northside lift station is out and will have to be replaced at a cost of $6800. Work at the new and old wastewater plants is proceeding and should be finished in the next 60 days, and the TWDB (Texas Water Development Board) and TCEQ (Texas Commission on Environmental Quality) are nearing approval of water-line improvement plans. The 2020-21 budget will be discussed and can be approved at the proposed budget meeting next Monday. The lineup for the West Texas Wind Festival the third week of October will be announced in the October newsletter to be mailed out the last week of this month.

Chief of Police Felix Pantoja gave the Police Report for August, saying that the Department received 89 calls for service, handled two vehicle crashes, made one arrest, and issued 13 warnings. He also reported a stabbing on August 20 in the Lucky Pot Game Room at the 235 Travel Stop. The female suspect fled the crime scene but was later located and arrested in Sweetwater for unrelated warrants. The male victim also fled but was later identified as a person from Abilene with outstanding warrants for dangerous drugs. The crime is believed to be drug related. The Roscoe Police also handled an accident on Sunday, August 30, in which a motorcycle rider headed north on US 84 crashed into a southbound vehicle on FM 608 and sustained serious injuries. He was airlifted to a nearby hospital. The driver of the vehicle was cited for failure to yield right-of-way. Both these incidents are still under investigation by Roscoe Police.

The Council then passed an ordinance setting the 2020-21 tax rate to be the same as this year’s and postponed approval of the 2020-21 budget until the meeting on Monday.

The Council also approved an ordinance assessing a $2.00 fee for Roscoe Volunteer Fire Department services to residents’ monthly water/services bill. It also approved an Atmos Energy settlement that is routine and done annually.  



This week, Roscoe got its first confirmed positive test for Covid-19, a student who was at the Early Childhood Center Friday. Yesterday, the school sent letters to parents of students who may have come in close contact with the positive student, whether in the student’s class or who “shared some combination of PE, recess, lunch, or a bus ride and may have been in close contact for some period before symptoms arose.” The letter then asks parents to watch closely for Covid-19 symptoms in their own child or children.

This local news comes on a week when Covid-19 numbers continue to drop statewide and remain relatively stable in most of the Big Country.  

Last week, Texas had 790 Covid-19 deaths (956 a week ago), 3,311 hospitalizations (3,537 a week ago) and an average of 4,048 cases per day, a decrease of 13% from the average two weeks ago.

Taylor County has 409 active cases (385 last week), and Abilene currently has 23 Covid-19 hospitalizations (20 last week). There have been 48 total Covid-19 deaths.

Nolan County reports 22 active cases, a decrease of 11 from 33 last week. Mitchell County has 9 active cases, down from 12 last week, and Fisher County has 3 active cases (4 last week).

Scurry County, however, bucked the trend with an outbreak at the Goodlife Assisted Living Facility, where 14 residents and 10 employees tested positive for Covid-19. The county now reports 47 active cases, 23 more than last week. It also confirms another death, an 84-year-old female.

Here are the Big Country’s county totals for the year as of yesterday (with a week ago in parentheses): Erath, 785 (722); Scurry, 579 (563); Jones, 566 (588); Brown, 524 (500); Howard, 438 (350); Comanche, 254 (221); Runnels, 242 (210); Nolan, 189 (180); Eastland, 155 (126); Stephens, 126 (126); Mitchell, 82 (75); Callahan 79 (73); Knox, 68 (67); Fisher, 63 (60); Coleman, 62 (56); Haskell, 59 (56); Coke, 50 (49); Shackelford, 25 (23); Stonewall, 10 (9); Kent, 7 (7); Throckmorton, 6 (5).
Selected west Texas counties yesterday (with a week ago in parentheses): Lubbock, 9,828 (8,983); Midland, 3,469 (3,362); Ector (Odessa), 2,962 (2,895); Tom Green (San Angelo), 2,151 (2,089); Wichita (Wichita Falls), 1.525 (1,392).

Texas now has had a total of 668,746 cases (641,791 a week ago), 68,483 of them active (74,829 a week ago), and 14,343 total deaths (13,553 a week ago).



First Hard Times photo: Caden Smith (12) follows Mike Massey block for TD.
The Roscoe Hard Times has now completed a decade of reporting Roscoe news. The first post (not counting preliminaries) was an account of the Plowboy football game with Stamford at the Sammy Baugh classic in Mustang Bowl on September 11, 2010. 

I’d just retired from Towson University and returned to live in Roscoe. I had just got internet access at what was then my mother’s home and still had yet for the moving truck to arrive with almost all my earthly possessions from Baltimore, where I’d lived for the previous 17 years.

In the beginning I posted the news as soon as I got it, but by December of that year I’d figured out it was easier on me and the blog’s readers to publish it weekly. I’ve been posting it on Wednesday mornings at around 10:00am ever since, minus two or three times every year when other aspects of my life knock me out of my normal routine.

The blog I use as the format is a free one provided by Google, and for that reason I can get information from Google Analytics about its postings. The number of hits provides a general idea of how popular a particular posting is, and another measure records where readers are located. With the internet being what it is, the Hard Times is read by people from all over the world, often including unexpected places like India or Kazakhstan. I’ve been getting similar weekly numbers for about the past five years, usually ranging from a low of about 250 hits weekly to the occasional 3,000 or 4,000 hits, which happens when there is big news and many facebook shares by readers. For example, the issue about Roscoe being on the NBC Nightly News and MSNBC got over 5,000 hits.

When I started the Hard Times, I had no idea how long I’d keep it up--and still don’t. I often thought I’d quit after ten years, but now that that time has been reached, I guess I’ll keep it up a while longer. As I said once before, I’ll probably continue as long as I consider the reward greater than the effort. It’s a way for me to give back to the community in a way that keeps me busy and mentally active, so I’m happy to do it.

Anyway, thanks to all you readers who regularly check the Hard Times to find out what’s going on in Roscoe. You make me feel useful and keep me on my toes.



Standing water in a cotton field west of Roscoe.
The official first day of autumn doesn’t arrive until next Tuesday, September 22, but you wouldn’t know it from the weather this past week as it has been decidedly fall-like. 

A couple of daily records and maybe more were set for low temperatures, and the high temperature for the week never got above 82°F, which is unusual for this time of year. According to the Weather Channel website, the record daily lows here for September 9 and 10 were 48° and 51° respectively, but last week’s lows for those two days were both 45°. I’d be willing to bet those two days also now hold the record for low daily maximums. The high for September 9 last week was 55° and for September 10 was 52°, only one degree above the previous record low.

With that said, the rest of the week was also cool with highs from Friday through yesterday 71°, 82°, 82°, 78°, and 82°. Lows ranged from 45° to Sunday’s 66°.

More rain fell on Thursday to add to that of Tuesday and Wednesday reported last week. My total here in town for the week was 3.4”, and the official amount reported by Kenny Landfried was 3.36”. Other places around Roscoe got more, but most people I talked to got between 3.25” and 5.00”. In any case, it was one of those big rains typical of September that was welcomed by everyone whose livelihood is affected by rainfall.

The forecast for the coming week is for more fall-like weather with mostly sunny skies the entire week (except tomorrow) and highs in the 80s, ranging from today’s forecast of 87° to 83° Thursday through Sunday. Lows will range from today’s 63° to Saturday’s and Sunday’s 57°. The drying out of last week’s rainfall will continue as more rain is unlikely. Tomorrow’s chance for precipitation is set at 20%, the rest of the week at 10%.

The autumnal equinox, when day and night are equal, arrives on Tuesday, September 22, at 8:31am.  At that moment, fall officially begins.



Funeral services for Sue Reeves Womack, 63, of Fort Worth, formerly of Roscoe, will be at 1:00pm Saturday, September 19, at McCoy Chapel of Memories with Billy Joe Jay officiating. Interment will follow at Roscoe Cemetery under the direction of McCoy Funeral Home. Visitation is Friday 6:00-8:00pm and Saturday 12:00-1:00pm. She passed away at her home on Saturday, September 5.

Sue was born October 5, 1956, at Loraine. She was a graduate of Roscoe High School and attended First United Methodist Church in Roscoe. Sue loved baseball and was very involved with the Euless Athletic Association serving as a President, Board Member, and Volunteer Coach. In the last few years, she enjoyed watching her grandsons play sports. Sue was a social butterfly and left many friends behind. She never met a stranger and always had a beautiful smile on her face.

Sue is survived by her son, Chris Womack and wife Danielle of Friendswood, Texas; grandsons, Jakob and Chase; sisters, Ann Tierney of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and Janet Russell of Houston; brothers; Paul Cauthen and wife Vicki, and Melvin Cauthen and wife Tammy, all of Arlington, Texas; and numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews.

She is preceded in death by her father, Leroy Reeves and wife Thelma; mother, Mary (White) Ballard and husband Al; and brothers; Tommy Reeves and Reggie Cauthen.

Pallbearers will be Jakob Cordova, Dan Cauthen, Paul Cauthen, Jr., Shawn Cauthen, Jared Reeves, and Casey Nordmeyer. Honorary pallbearers are Louis Womack and Chase Vasquez.

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