Despite moving up to class 6A this year, the Germantown Mavericks are off to a strong start, going 2-1 in its first three outings.
The Mavericks are hoping to improve upon that record this week, when they face 6A opponent Terry High School (2-2).
Germantown hopes to move to 3-1, while Terry is looking to rebound after falling to Ridgeland last week.
Friday’s match up will be the first time Germantown has faced off against the Bulldogs, a team that according to stats is pretty evenly matched.
Through three games, the Mavericks have put up 86 points, while allowing 71 against.
By comparison, Terry has scored 129 points in four games, while allowing 68.
Both teams also lost to Canton. Germantown fell to the Tigers in a 21-14 nail-biter that went into overtime. Terry lost to the same team 26-13.
Mavericks head coach Tim Shramek reflected on the Canton matchup.
“Canton had been averaging 28 to 35 points a game and we held them to 21,” he said. “It was 14 to 14 going into overtime.”
Despite the outcome, the coach was impressed with how his team played. “I want to make sure that you give the opponent credit. They played really well,” Shramek said. “We made some mistakes. Canton stopped us on drives. We had situations where we stopped ourselves.
“You can’t make mistakes against good people.”
Germantown used its bye week to address those concerns. “We have to do the little things a little more consistent,” he said. “We play hard, we work hard and we try hard, but we can’t make those little mistakes.”
The Mavericks offense is led by junior quarterback Colton Gardner. So far this year, Gardner (6’, 175 lbs.) has completed 30 of 56 passes for 363 yards and two touchdowns.
On the ground, junior Nick Barnes (5’9”, 190 lbs.) has rushed for 302 yards and eight touchdowns, while junior Branson Robinson (5’10”, 195 lbs.) has carried the ball 20 times for 125 yards and two touchdowns, according to Maxpreps.com.
“All three started on offense last year. We try to get the ball to whoever is open,” he said. “We’re probably thought of as a run team first. The first night we played, we ran the ball 70 percent of the time. Week two, we were about 50/50. Week three, we were close to 50/50.”
In week one, Germantown dismantled DeSoto Central in a 42-24 decision. The following week, the Mavs snuck by Neshoba Central in a 30-27 squeaker. Against Canton, the defense held the undefeated Tigers to just 14 points in regulation.
Defensive standouts include sophomore Devin Arrington (6’1”, 195 lbs.), who has notched 29 tackles and Luke Lary (5’9”, 210 lbs.), who has recorded 25 tackles through three games.
“We’ve got a lot of good young players. We’re just more inexperienced than we’ve been in the past,” he said.
The Mavericks take the field on Friday, September 20 at 7 p.m. The matchup is a home game.
Germantown keys to victory
-Stay balanced: Terry allowed 68 points in its first four games. The Mavericks’ offense will have to rely on its running and passing games in order to keep the defense guessing.
-Step up on defence:Germantown’s young defense will have to step up to stop the potent Bulldog offense, which scored 129 points in its first four outings this year.
Germantown at a glance
-Class/Division: 6A, Region 2 (MHSAA)
-Head Coach: Tim Shramek
-Assistant Coaches: Steve Metz, Dustin Barrick, Tracy Beals, Bruce Brady, Scott Brown, Ben Dew, Corky Houghton, Bryan Pittman, Brad Smotherman and Charlie Shearer
-2018 record: 7-5
John Lewis, L’Arthur Hester, Ojavien Francis, Arrington Robinson, Quavius Thompson, Jalen Cooke, A.J. Edwards, Nick Barnes, Tykwon Wade, McKinley Woodward, Aiden Duclose, Dequante Peoples, Jarrett Wade, Tony Knight, Cole Burton, Tysheid Anderson, Jarbree Tyler, Steven Johnson, Branson Robinson, Dylan Gray, Cameron Helom, Lance Dalton, McCobian Williams, Raveon Jones, Quinton Nelson, Sam Arnett, Ed Dunigan, Fred McAfee, Jaydon Kelly, Dillon Lewis, Jacob Bass, Josh Rose, Bo Eldridge, Jalen Davis, John Edwards, Tyrese Fields, Myles Cheeks, Zack Curtis, Devin Arrington, Luke Lary, Noah Gibbs, Frank Rimmer, Trey McCullough, Zxavian Harris, Isaiah Bell, Bobby Thompson, Jroderic Olive, Zaarrio McBride, Dayne Luby, Clayton Phillips, J.T. Clark, Jacob Greenwood, Gibson Welch, Brandon Smith, Carson Yoder, Aubrey Grace, Jakeise Brown, Bailey Drake, Hunter Eldridge, Michah Maxie, Jacoby Johnson, Connor Shook, Jack Segalini, Carson Ewing, Gabriel Price, Jayden Hart, Jaylen Trice, Dylan Boyd, Justin Bass, Colton Yoder, Chris Sanders, Monterrio Walker, Jackson Dew, Tristian Jackson, Tyius Jackson and Jadarius Williams