STAFF WRITER JENNIFER FIERRO
The Faith Academy of Marble Falls football team begins district play on the road against its toughest test of the season: Austin Veritas.
Veritas (3-3), the defending state champion, was a preseason top 10 team and the pick of most experts to win the Division I, District 2 six-man championship in the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools.
The two teams square off at 7:30 p.m. Friday, October 11, at Sycamore Springs Middle School, 14451 Sawyer Ranch Road in Austin.
“This is how we start off district – with the best we can face,” said Flames head coach Stephen Shipley. “If we can start off district with a big win, we can start off with momentum. We’ll have to play a great game in all aspects. They feel like we’re the best team they’ve faced all season.”
The Flames are 4-1.
Veritas has a successful program, “establishing a culture and a system that starts off at a young age.”
“They run a system; they run it well,” Shipley said. “They pester you offensively and block you defensively. They do the fundamentals correctly.”
Though Veritas lost eight players to graduation, Shipley said his team must be prepared for an opponent that’s not used to losing.
Offensively, Veritas uses a three-back system though they sometimes throw the ball, Shipley said.
“They’re doing a lot of things right,” he said. “It shows they don’t make a lot of mistakes. Blocking and tackling, that’s what we’re going to have to do to be successful. We have to wrap up. We’re going to have to do a good job in that.”
The Veritas defense has speed. With 31 players on the roster, the Defenders’ substitutes are always fresh.
The Flames enter this contest with plenty of confidence, especially on offense. Faith is averaging 67.6 points a contest.
“I feel like we have more of a rhythm,” Shipley said. “Defensively, we still have some things we need to put together. Obviously, we’re going to have to do that this week.”