Jason Herring’s Sonora football team won its state championship against the Blanco Panthers in a tight 27 to 24 game in 2000. The same coaches will face each other again.
“I know him very well,” Herring said. “It’s the same coaches and the same playing style.”
The teams are both 13-0.
The Bobcats and Panthers will face off for the Region IV-2A Division II championship at 6 p.m. Refugio is the home team.
Although the game was originally set for 8 p.m., the time was moved to 6 p.m. when a triple-header at the Alamodome turned into a double-header. Five A team Austin Westlake will play San Antonio Clark at 2 p.m. followed by Refugio’s game.
Only Refugio and Cuero remain in the playoffs in this area. Beeville, George West and Gregory-Portland all ended their seasons last week.
Statistically, the Bobcats and Panthers are evenly matched in size and speed. Ball turnovers will be the key. Blanco recorded one loss this season against Cisco. After the loss, the Bobcats leap-frogged over Blanco to be named No. 1 in the state.
“Every game from here on out will be a war,” Herring said. “Every team is tough.”
The closest game Blanco has played is the 28-9 victory over Hallettsville in the area playoffs. Refugio also beat Hallettsville in a closer, 28-25 match.
Herring says the team that does everything right and makes no mistakes will come out ahead. The head coach is neither cocky or daunted by Saturday’s game.
“We’re part of a special group,” he says. “The teams only get better and better. We’re going to give it our best shot.”