JENNIFER FIERRO • STAFF WRITER
MARBLE FALLS — The start of Division III District 3 play for the Faith Academy of Marble Falls football team means the Flames must zero in on their 2015 goals.
Two of those goals: competing for the district crown and qualifying for the playoffs.
Head football coach Randy Denton said the Texas School for the Deaf won’t make it easy when the two squads square off Sept. 25 at Pony Stadium, 1511 Pony Circle Drive. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m.
The Rangers (3-0) beat Dallas Christian Home Educators 64-21, the California School for the Deaf 42-12 and the Florida School for the Deaf 24-18.
“They’ve got some good athletes,” Denton said. “They kind of run a quirky offense that we’re going to have to be disciplined to stop.”
He described the offense as a wing-T running attack that emphasizes misdirection but is operated with the quarterback standing in the shotgun instead of under center.
The Rangers’ Stone Leiker has about 30 rushes for more than 170 yards, while quarterback Austin Silva-Wynne has about 18 rushes for more than 100 yards.
The Flames defense has been working on restraint and reading keys before deciding on which way to run to make the tackle.
“Everybody’s got to do their job,” Denton said. “They’ve got guys going in all different directions at the snap of the ball, and we’re going to have to be disciplined to be where we need to be.”
The Flames (0-4) will continue to utilize their running attack. Denton has installed a few more wrinkles, however, with the aim of eliminating fumbles and extending drives to more than three plays.
“We’re going to have to change it to an attack to where their weaknesses are,” he said. “We’ve been getting better every week at running the football, and it’s been an emphasis in the game. We haven’t thrown it as much in the last couple of weeks, and that was by design to be able to continue to work on the run game. We think it’s there.”
Faith senior Jonathan Reyes has scored all five touchdowns for the Flames. He has 37 carries for 141 yards and four touchdowns, seven catches for 78 yards and an 87-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.
Senior quarterback Rich Coleman has completed 19 passes for 172 yards with three interceptions.
During team meetings, coaches have told players the time is now to bring all the facets together. Denton said coaches have told the seniors the team must take a big step right now.
“Everything else up to this point has been learning the new system, learning the new staff, getting the new guys some experience, and now it’s time to perform,” he said. “I think we’ve done a good job keeping everybody’s spirit up and mind up and explaining to them that we did have a very tough non-district schedule … not to say that a couple of those ballgames we could have won. But I think the spirits are good. I think these couple of weeks in district will tell the tale on how the rest of the season goes.”