In the small East Texas town of Pineland (population 815), Demarie Smith is putting up huge numbers for West Sabine.
The undersized Smith (5-foot-7-inch, 145 pounds) is the Tigers’ little-big man, wowing West Sabine fans and opponents alike with his array of moves, bone-crunching tackles and nose for the end zone.
“What he lacks in size, he makes up for with toughness,” Coach Jonathan Jones said of his junior star.
In last week’s 56-20 win over Hull-Daisetta, Smith had a night to remember. First, he rushed 14 times for 275 yards and six touchdowns. That means that nearly half of his carries went for scores. Next, he had a 65-yard kick return. He also ran for a pair of two-point conversions and threw for three more. Finally, he made 12 tackles and broke up four passes. Rumors that he also sold programs at the front gate were likely unfounded. With the victory, the Tigers upped their mark to 3-2 with San Augustine coming to town for the District 10-2A Division 1 opener.
Smith is an accomplished student-athlete, earning all-district honors in basketball and baseball (shortstop) while running on two relays at the regional track and field meet last spring.
In the classroom, he’s a star with a straight-A average and ranked near the top of his class. Smith is a member of the National Honor Society, class president and participates in Tigers Give Back, a community beautification program.
“Demarie does it all, whether on the field or around the school,” said Coach Jones. “He gained most of his yardage running inside, then bouncing to the outside with a tremendous burst of speed. Demarie is certainly tough, fast and smart. But just as important, he’s 100% reliable and clearly our team leader.’’