After falling 48-21 last week to Navarro, the Shiner Comanches carry a three-game losing streak into Friday’s matchup at Ben Bolt-Palito Blanco. Shiner head coach Steven Cerny said last Friday’s loss was not a totally negative experience.
"It was a great test for us," he said. "We didn’t win the game, but I thought we gave a great effort and saw some things on the field that we had been looking forward to seeing."
The Badgers, who are 16th in the Associated Press’ Class 1A poll and averaging 50.6 points per game, return 14 starters from an area finalist that went 9-1 in 2010.
"They’ve got a lot back from last year’s club," said Cerny. "They lost their quarterback but Coach (Jeff) Lefevre does a good job of developing them, so they’ve got another good one this year. They're definitely going to be a playoff team this year, so it’s another good test for us. We want to see where we are and see if we fit the mold of being a playoff team ourselves."
Shiner comes into the game with 1,084 rushing yards from their traditional veer offense, but the Comanches have had difficulty holding on to the football with 26 fumbles this season.
"We’re fumbling way too much, it’s been unbelievable," Cerny said. "If we don’t fix that problem, then we’re not going to fix our offense."
Even though on paper it looks like a matchup of two teams heading in different directions, Lefevre is not in any way taking the Comanches lightly.
"Let’s not forget who Shiner is," he said. "It doesn’t matter how they start out, they’re still Shiner and they are what they’ve always been. Their record is no indicative of what their football program is right now. They’re probably the best 1-4 football team in the state of Texas."
The Comanche defense will be tested by the Badgers’ skill players, which include quarterback Albert Gonzalez (1,048 passing yards, 12TDs), tailback Gabriel Ramirez (836 rushing yards, 14TDs), and all-state receiver Andres Alaniz (36 catches, 744 yards, 13TDs).
"Our strength right now is we don’t have just one kid who catches the ball, we’ve got five or six," Lefevre said. "Alaniz is a special kid, but we do have others who catch the ball well and are effective. We’re not big at all, so we’ve got to try and get yards anyway we can."
The game kicks off at 7:30 p.m. at J.E. Barrera Stadium in Ben Bolt.