WELCH — For the second time this season, Welch has had to forfeit a football game due to low numbers.

The Wildcats, who were scheduled to play at Covington-Douglas on Friday, Oct. 5, have only seven healthy players to suit up this week.

Welch has an average daily membership of 85.68, ranking it 371st out of 481 member schools.

Average daily membership is used to determine classifications for sports-playing schools. It is based on enrollment in grades 9-12.

The Cats, now 0-6, had to forfeit their Sept. 14 game with Foyil then were idle last week after Copan scrapped it’s season because of the same problem.

“Dakota (Arnold) played with fractured elbow a couple weeks,” Hindman said. “He finally went to the doctor and they put him out for the rest of the year. That takes us down to 10. We should get all the rest of them back next week.

Hunter Deerinwater has been sidelined with a high ankle sprain and Eli Gilman and Robbie Foust have been out with concussions.

Gilman was about to be released but got a bad case of poison ivy, Hindman said.

The Cats suffered a 54-0 loss to Medford on Friday, Sept. 28. The game ended at the half.

“We got better last week,” Hindman said, “We tackled better. With just eight guys playing we just got worn down. I think our offensive line played better.”

Hindman said game officials asked if he wanted to use a running clock the last five minutes or so.

“I said ‘no, we are getting practice out of this,’” he said. “This was an opportunity for us to get better and we did.”

The Wildcats’ remaining games include Oct. 12 at Coyle, Oct. 18 at home with Southwest Covenant, Oct. 26 at Bluejacket and Nov. 2 at home with Deer Creek-Lamont.

Quapaw moved its game at Oklahoma Union to Thursday night since the OU fast pitch softball team is in the state tournament.

In games that will be played Friday night, it’s Commerce at Fairland, Afton at Colcord, Wyandotte at Tulsa Metro Christian and Bluejacket at Medford.

This is the third time in the past five years the Welch has started 0-6.

By contrast, it has had 10 seasons with 10 or more wins, including 1987’s Class B state championship drive where the Cats went 13-0.

“There are things to build on for next year,” Hindman said. “The junior high is winning and that makes a big difference.”

Hindman loses three seniors (Gilman, Deerinwater and Nate Beaty), but anticipates an infusion of six to eight players from a junior high team that is currently 4-2.

While it’s the 73rd time Commerce and Fairland have met since 1924, this will just be the second time for Wyandotte and Metro to square off.

The only other time was in 1989 in the playoffs.

Metro, founded in 1983 and now located at the old Charles Mason High School, shares eighth in The Associated Press Oklahoma high school poll.

It dropped down after competing on the Class 4A level the previous four seasons. Prior to that, the Patriots were in 3A.

Commerce and Fairland haven’t met since 2009, when the Tigers moved up to 2A.