The two smallest schools in Cooke County have a big showdown Friday night.
Era is set to host Sacred Heart as both teams look to bounce back from week one losses.
Era (0-1) fell 71-12 at Lindsay despite keeping it close in the first quarter.
Sacred Heart (0-1) led at halftime at home against Arlington Pantego Christian but could not hold on, losing 35-18.
Sacred Heart coach Dale Schilling said he was pleased with the Tigers’ performance against a larger opponent despite the result.
“We really let one slip away,” Schilling said. “We were up 18-7 at the half, and we played really hard. We just had some really bad breaks go their way in the second half. Hopefully, we’ll bounce back from that. As far as physicality and playing hard, I’m very pleased.”
Sacred Heart’s offense centered around brothers Ryan and Seth Swirczynski. Ryan completed 6 of 10 passes for 52 yards and a touchdown. He also rushed 15 times for 106 yards and two touchdowns. Seth caught two passes for 20 yards and a touchdown and rushed 23 times for 43 yards.
Era coach Terry Felderhoff said the brothers and the Tigers’ other skill position players stand out to him on film.
“Everybody talks about the two Swirczynksi brothers,” Felderhoff said. “Obviously, those two guys are pretty good. They got a few others to go with them, so (if) you focus on them solely, they can hurt you with other kids. Their skill positions are what really stands out.”
For Era, junior quarterback Jarren Twiner led the way, tossing two touchdowns along with 113 yards. Most of that went to senior Kyle Greer, who made five receptions for 102 yards and caught both touchdown passes.
Schilling said one thing he notices about Era is the offensive line. He said the Hornets’ line is bigger than Sacred Heart’s, which will provide a challenge for the Tigers.
“We just have to come off the ball a lot harder and lower and just play with a lot more tenacity, but we have to do it for four quarters,” Schilling said. “That’s the main thing. We just have to play our technique, but we just have to whip the man in front of us by playing with a lot more aggression and tenacity.”
Felderhoff said the Hornets may be shorthanded as they deal with some injuries and illnesses, but he otherwise thinks they’re making good progress.
“I like where we were headed,” Felderhoff said. “Due to illness and injury, we’re kinda having to regroup a little bit. I’ve been pleased with them, pleased with their work ethic and everything else. We were headed in the right direction, we just gotta get through this little rough spot where we can get everybody back here healthy.”
Felderhoff said the key for Era will be execution and every player being on the same page each play. Schilling said the Tigers need to protect the football. If they don’t turn it over, he said they should be fine.
Kickoff in Era is set for 7 p.m.