After a week off to reassess, regroup and, more importantly, recover, the Waxahachie Indians return to football action Friday night at home against Mansfield Lake Ridge.
The contest will be the third District 7-6A tilt for both teams this season. It is also the annual Pink Out game for the Indians, which honors breast cancer survivors with a special pre-game on-field ceremony. Fans for both teams are also encouraged to wear pink in support.
Waxahachie enters the game on a four-game losing streak at 1-4 overall and 0-2 in district action after playing arguably two of the three best teams in 7-6A. Friday will be no easier for the Tribe, though, as Lake Ridge is third of those three teams — paired with Cedar Hill and DeSoto — who have planted themselves atop the district standings.
The Eagles are 3-1 on the season and 2-0 in 7-6A with district wins against South Grand Prairie (34-22) and DeSoto (34-29).
Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Stuart B. Lumpkins Stadium, located at 600 Indian Drive in Waxahachie.
Waxahachie fans now have an FM option on the radio dial to listen to Indian athletics, as KBEC 1390 has added 99.1 FM. Join the "Voice of the Indians," Ken Roberts, and coach Mike Turner for pregame programming at 7 p.m. on either 1390 AM, 99.1 FM or by searching for "KBEC" on the TuneIn app on Apple and Android devices.
Per UIL regulations, all early ticket sales end at 11:30 a.m. Friday. Adult tickets are $6 and students are $3 (cash only) and can be purchased at the Waxahachie Daily Light.
General admission tickets are $7 at the gate.
ABOUT THE INDIANS
In their last time out before the bye week, the Indians tallied 322 yards of total offense and 28 points on a Cedar Hill defense that entered having limited opponents to fewer than 120 yards and nine points per game over the first four weeks.
DJ Hollywood posted a four-touchdown performance on 15-of-21 passing for 215 yards.
Hollywood, who has split snaps under center this season with Campbell Sullivan and Jordan Fay, is now the clear leader for the Tribe through the air. He has completed 31-of-53 passes for 572 yards and eight touchdowns.
Josh Sterns led the Indians with six receptions for 113 yards and two touchdowns and added 33 rushing yards on three carries against the physical Cedar Hill defense.
The Indians began the game against Cedar Hill with seven players in street clothes due to injury and added at least four more during the contest. There were also as many as nine underclassmen on the field for the defense at one time.
ABOUT THE EAGLES
The Eagles enter Friday's game averaging nearly 500 yards of total offense (478.8) but allowing 416.8 yards and 29.5 points per game. They are also still carrying the momentum gained from the upset two Fridays ago against DeSoto.
Quarterback Chandler Rodgers, who torched the Indians defense two seasons ago as a sophomore for seven rushing touchdowns, leads the team in rushing and passing. The senior has completed 75-of-116 passes for 1,079 yards and eight touchdowns with six interceptions. He also has a team-high 71 carries for 499 yards and five touchdowns.
Dewone Jackson has matched the 71 carries of Rodgers and has a team-high seven rushing touchdowns to go with his 324 rushing yards.
Tameron Derrough is leading receiver in terms of yardage (16-304) but Kaleb Whitley has been the favorite target for Rodgers with 23 catches for 156 yards. Keylan Johnson is the big-play threat for the Eagles with four touchdown receptions on nine catches and 169 yards.
Waxahachie and Lake Ridge have met six times on the gridiron, though Indians fans may have rather the series had stopped after one.
After the Indians won the first meeting 77-0 in 2012, the Eagles have won each of the last five meetings, including 42-17 last year. The other four Lake Ridge wins included 38-34 in 2013, 72-55 in 2014, 60-34 in 2015 and 63-49.