SHINER -- Every district opener is dubbed as a "big game."
But the Shiner football team has things stepped up a notch for its Division I-District 15-A opener tonight. The Comanches host Class A No. 1 Ganado.
Shiner (2-4) and Ganado (6-0) duke it out tonight at Comanche Field in Shiner for a shot at the DI-15-A driver’s seat. Kickoff is set for 7:30.
"We figured Ganado would be a good team, and we’re not surprised that they’re No. 1 in the state," Shiner coach Steven Cerny said. "We’re going into this game as the underdog, but we’re coming to play and we’re going to give Ganado everything we’ve got."
The Comanches and Indians have one common opponent going into tonight’s contest -- Vanderbilt Industrial. Shiner lost to Industrial, 20-7, in the season opener, while Ganado beat the Cobras, 33-13, the following week.
Both teams faced Class 2A schools in their first four games of the season, and each faced a 3A school as well. While the Comanches will face a Class A school for the second time this season, the Indians face a school in their own classification for the first time this year.
Ganado runs the football the majority of the time either out of the wishbone or the veer. The Indians boast a 1,000-yard rusher in Josh Labay (1,086 yards) and an offensive line, which has three players weighing in at 290 lbs or more.
"They run mainly power or split back," Cerny said. "Most of their power plays are out of the wishbone, and most of their split back is out of the veer."
While Ganado may have more size than Shiner, the Comanches have a little more speed than the Indians. Cerny also has a method for his defense -- particularly the defensive linemen.
"We have to stay low," he said. "We also have to get to the gaps quicker. We have to use our quickness to our advantage."
Ganado operates out of a 4-3 alignment on defense. Cerny said the Indians are strong in the secondary as well.
Shiner has a few injuries going into tonight’s game. Evel Jones is out with a torn MCL, while Marlon Wallace is day-to-day with a shoulder injury, and a game-time decision will be made as to whether or not Wallace will play.