On Friday night, more Texas high school football teams will join in on district action.
And if eyes weren’t already on District 2-2A Division I entering the season thanks in part to the Antelopes’ advancement to the fifth round of the playoff last year, there are certainly compelling stories waiting to unfold with four undefeated teams entering the slate. Of the aforementioned squads, Abernathy and Sundown are slated for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff Friday at Antelope Stadium.
“Abernathy is a semifinalist returning from last year and coach (Darrell Daily’s) son is a real good player,” said Roughnecks coach Steve Smith, whose team is 5-0. “They are well coached, have a lot of discipline and don’t beat themselves. So, when you play a team that strong and disciplined you really have to contain your own mistakes and be disciplined in your own place.”
The Antelopes (5-0), Sundown, New Deal and Hale Center make up the undefeated quartet, but Smith isn’t underestimating outliers Floydada and Olton.
“This is a very good district top to bottom,” Smith said. “I know four of us are undefeated, but the other two are are good quality teams. I guarantee one of these teams will be undefeated by the time it is all over, but the thing with that is it makes you play up to that level. If you are in a bad district sometimes your play doesn’t improve. In this district, you better be ready to go ever night.”
Abernathy sophomore quarterback Bryson Daily continues to spearhead the Antelope offense, accounting for 978 total yards and 15 touchdowns. Paired with teammate and junior Kole Carlisle, who has 464 rushing yards and six touchdowns, Abernathy has averaged 41 points a game.
The Roughnecks have found some talented players in their underclassmen, as well. Sundown sophomore quarterback Christian Huey has 1,590 total yards and 21 touchdowns through five games of work.
Abernathy coach Darrell Daily and company will look to keep Huey and the Sundown offense off the field Friday night while making the most of every drive.
The winner of the contest gains an advantage in district play, remaining undefeated in the process. The undefeated Lions take on Olton, while the Owls face Floydada after a week off.
With the talent that is featured in 2-2A, the district’s champs could see a prolonged playoff push.
“It is a tough district,” Daily said. “Last year, we went all the way to the semifinals and there were close games in district. We had to come back to beat Sundown last year. Our kids played hard. New Deal and Hale Center, who we beat by seven last game of (district), and those other teams were competitive. This district is tough and the teams are well coached. So, it will be a battle very Friday night, not just tomorrow.”