STAFF WRITER JENNIFER FIERRO
The schedule doesn’t get easier for the Burnet High School football team.
A week after playing undefeated Fischer Canyon Lake, the Bulldogs (2-5 overall, 0-2 District 13-4A Division I) host rival Liberty Hill (5-1, 2-0) with a 7:30 p.m. kickoff Friday, Oct. 26, at Bulldog Field, 1400 Bulldog Stadium Drive.
The advantage for the Bulldogs is that the Panthers run the same slot-T offense as Canyon Lake, so they will defend the same scheme in back-to-back weeks.
But what’s the one big difference between how the two offenses function?
Canyon Lake might have more options in its formations, Burnet head coach Kurt Jones said, while Liberty Hill simply lines up and runs the plays without caring if the defense knows what’s coming.
The Panthers are led by senior running back Kyle Harrison, who has 102 carries for 1,061 yards and 18 touchdowns, and junior quarterback Jacob Cearley, who has 31 carries for 334 yards and nine scores.
Jones credits the offensive line, led by senior Justin Montgomery, for the Panthers having more than 3,000 yards rushing on the season. Jones noted most of the starting offensive linemen are seniors who have played together for years
“It’s kind of where it all starts for them,” he said. “When you have great offensive linemen, there’s no limit.
“Liberty Hill runs the slot-T as well as anyone in Texas,” he added. “You realize why they rank in most everyone’s top three. It’ll be the toughest challenge we’ll face. There’s not much that team lacks in size, strength, and depth.”
Defensively, the Panthers are led by senior defensive lineman Kobry Schmidt and senior defensive back Wyatt Cheney.
“They’re very aggressive,” Jones said. “They have great team speed. Their secondary is rock solid.”
Jones summed up the 43-0 loss to Canyon Lake on Oct. 19.
“We had another tough night,” he said. “They’re a physical football team. We couldn’t get much going offensively. We played pretty good defense.”
Leading 14-0, the Hawks scored a touchdown with a minute left in the first half. Canyon Lake got 364 yards of total offense with 364 on the ground. Jacob Ruff had 19 carries for 144 yards and three touchdowns, while Tristan Chacon had 13 carries for 103 yards and a score.
Still, Jones was proud of the effort from his players.
“Our kids battled hard and gave great effort,” he said.