Coming up in Hays County football for Aug. 31

Dripping Springs Tigers vs. Kerrville Tivy Antlers 

When: Friday, Aug. 31 at 7:30 p.m.
Where: Tiger Stadium
Last meeting (2017): Dripping Springs 40, Tivy 7
Dripping Springs won’t have to wait long to get its first big test of the season. Rolling into Tiger Stadium Friday is a Tivy program slated to be the frontrunner in 14-5A, Division II and possibly a potent playoff contender. Tivy will be guided by an offense that brings back nearly half of its starters from last year’s deep playoff run. That includes dual-threat senior quarterback Karson Valverde, who last year threw for over 1,300 yards and nine touchdowns, as well as wide receivers Trapper Pannell and Josh Vela. It could be a tall task for a Dripping Springs defense that will have several players make their first varsity start Friday. However, Dripping Springs will counter with an equally potent offense that returns several key elements, including running back Jake Cox and wide receiver Parker Alford. High expectations for both programs could make this battle of former district foes one to keep an eye on.

Hays Rebels at San Marcos Rattlers 

When: Friday, Aug. 31 at 7:30 p.m.
Where: Rattler Stadium, San Marcos
Last meeting (2011): Hays 49, San Marcos 27
An age-old Hays County rivalry is renewed Friday when Hays and San Marcos square off on the gridiron for the first time in seven seasons. Many eyes, however, will be on how the Rebel offense will fare under first year head coach Les Goad, who brings with him the run-oriented Slot-T offense. Hays quarterback Xavier Martinez guides a unit with several key returning elements, such as running backs Martin Shoemaker, Sam Scott and Nate Tate, as well as tight end Baylor Jordan and center Brandon Garcia. They’ll have to crack a seasoned Rattler defense that limited opponents to 24 points per game in 2017. The Rebel defense, led by Michael Mireles, Jamison Eddleman and Jai Bialaszewski, takes on a San Marcos offense that aims to fill the void left by quarterback Prudy Calderon, who graduated in May. Whoever is signal caller will inherit a handful of potent weapons, which includes running back Jamon Williams, who rushed for over 1,000 yards a year ago.

Lehman Lobos vs. New Braunfels Canyon Cougars 

When: Friday, Aug. 31 at 7:30 p.m.
Where; Bob Shelton Stadium
Last meeting (2011): Canyon 35, Lehman 21 
A battle between two teams with new head coaches at the helm will be waged Friday at Shelton Stadium. Lehman, led by first year head coach Bruce Salmon, aims to snap a seven-game losing streak dating back to last season. Helping that cause will be a seasoned offense that brings back seven players from a year ago. The big question, however, is who will the Lobos have at quarterback? Sophomore Bryant Lewis, who took a bulk of the snaps last season, returns, as does senior Daniel O’Neal, who has also saw time under center. Whoever is signal caller will have the help of running back Diego Romero, 6-foot, 3-inch wide receiver Jake Cude, as well as wide receiver Zach Harris. Lehman’s defense, which also brings back seven players, will go up against a Canyon offense that struggled to put up points in 2017. However, Canyon also returns most of its offense, including quarterback Zavier Perez, wide receiver Callon Farr and running back Seth Haney.

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