Gonzales Cannon On-Line

Shiner shops for semifinal spot against Mart
by Mark Lube, Gonzales Cannon Sports Editor
Thursday, December 12, 2013

Gonzales Cannon Article   |   Shiner Comanche Football

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Mart. State semifinals.

Sound familiar?

It should if you are familiar with some of the recent history of the Shiner Comanches football team.

Shiner (10-3) will play Mart (10-3) at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Kelly Reeves Athletic Complex in Round Rock in the Class 1A Division I state semifinals.

The two teams met last year in this round, at the same venue, with Mart taking the victory 42-7.

Shiner used a huge defensive effort to hold off Thorndale, 14-10, in the quarterfinals last week in Buda.

"It was a big win for us," Shiner head coach Steven Cerny said. "We moved the ball well but could not capitalize on offensive chances inside the 10. Our defense really stepped up and once we got into the flow of the game, we did a good job of shutting Thorndale down."

Shiner's Chad Neubauer got a fourth-quarter interception at his goal line and the Comanches also put lots of pressure on quarterback Riley Schaefer, including a sack. Mart pounded Bosqueville, 58-26, in their quarterfinal matchup.

The Comanches are hoping for some redemption from last year.

"You have that last loss from the previous season and you hope to get the opportunity for the rematch," Cerny said. "Our kids have stepped up hard to have earned this opportunity."

Mart has most of its skilled players back from the 2012 team but has lost some players on both lines.

The Panthers run a spread system based primarily out of the shotgun.

"They run a lot of jet sweeps and quarterback-read plays," Cerny said.

Quarterback De'Nerian Thomas is the trigger man for the Mart offense

"Thomas makes things happens and is a great running quarterback," Cerny said.

Running back D'Marcus Cosby, a starter as a freshman last year, will get some carries as well.

In the passing game, the Panthers will look to tall receiver Trevian Medlock and to Walker Love.

Cerny said Love will be the ball carrier on the jet sweeps most of the time.

"Our defense will need to contain their speed and prevent Mart from making any big plays," he said. We need to make them earn everything."

Neubauer, Dillion Kalina, Jacob Stafford and the rest of the Shiner defense will see some similarity in Mart's offense to Thorndale.

With just one difference.

"Mart's offensive is more explosive," Cerny said.

The Panther's defense comes out in the 3-4, and likely switch to the 5-2 or 5-3 to counter the Comanches' double-tight end sets.

Two-time All-State linebacker Collin Nail and Cosby at linebacker are the key players for the Shiner defense to be aware of.

"We will need to keep their defensive line from penetrating into our backfield," Cerny said. "Mart will not sit back on technique. They will move. We have to take good blocking angles.

The winner will meet either Stamford or Hico at 10 a.m. December 19 at the AT&T Stadium in Arlington in the state championship game.

Shiner Comanche Football


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