The last time Smithson Valley faced Judson, the undefeated Rockets were ranked as the top team in the San Antonio area by KSAT 12 and ranked second overall in Texas. The Rangers were unfazed, stunning Judson with a 40-37 overtime win.
“Smithson Valley is a very disciplined team,” Judson senior running back Sincere McCormick said. “Last year they gave us a run for our money in overtime. We don’t want that same feeling and we come into this year’s matchup with the mindset of attacking the game.”
This year, the Rockets are off to a similar start. Judson boasts a perfect 5-0 record, including wins against Clear Springs, Wagner, Steele, San Marcos and New Braunfels, and are once again ranked highly in the state, sitting at third overall.
”It’s really exciting,” said Smithson Valley senior defensive tackle Will Gibbens. “It’s always a great atmosphere playing one of the highest ranked teams in the state. It’s always really fun thing getting out there and testing our team and see how far we’ve come from the beginning of the season.”
The story has been different for Smithson Valley. The Rangers opened the 2018 with three straight one-possession losses to Midland Lee, Madison and Clemens. They’ve since rebounded, winning their last two district games against New Braunfels and East Central. In those two wins, the Rangers offense averaged 41 points a game.
“They’re dangerous,” Judson senior running back Rashad Wisdom said. “They’re still trying to find their momentum. They’re going to have something to come out and play against us. They’re always a good team, very disciplined, well coached. It’s going to be a good game.”
“Our fans get really excited about it,” Gibbens said. “Hopefully, we’ll fill Rangers Stadium up.”
Kickoff between the Rockets and Rangers is set for Friday at 7:30 p.m.
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