Needville Blue Jays (10-2) vs. Lampasas Badgers (11-1)
Saturday, Nov. 30 — noon — San Antonio, TX — Alamodome
NEEDVILLE — It has been nearly 30 years since the last time the Needville High School football team has reached this point in the season.
The Blue Jays are on the doorstep of playing for a regional championship.
But before that can be a potential outcome, Needville (10-2) will have to get past Lampasas on Saturday in San Antonio.
The Blue Jays will face the Badgers at noon at the Alamodome.
“This is a huge thing for our kids and our community,” Needville head coach Mike Giles said. “It is a great opportunity, playing a really good football team.
“Our team is excited to be practicing during Thanksgiving and playing at the Alamodome is a big deal.
“We see a bigger picture as well. We don’t want to be satisfied with this week and our kids are really hungry.
“We just have to play really, really well. Let it all fly and see what happens.”
Like Needville, Lampasas (11-1) comes into the contest on a program high with the team’s first double-digit victory season since 2011.
The Badgers have already knocked out one member of District 13-4A DI with a bi-district victory over Brazosport (42-14) before an area win over Gonzales (56-6).
The Lampasas offense has been defined by junior quarterback Ace Whitehead.
“We have to stop No. 2,” Giles said. “Whitehead, the quarterback. He makes them go.”
The Badger quarterback has completed 70 percent of passes (197x280) for 3,069 yards and 41 touchdowns against three interceptions.
The playoffs haven’t slowed Whitehead down. He has completed 71 percent of his passes (32x45) for 444 yards and six touchdowns.
Whitehead is also team’s No. 2 rusher behind junior Jack Jerome.
Whitehead has rushed for 603 yards and 18 touchdowns against 102 carries.
Jerome has 1,215 yards and 11 touchdowns on 176 carries. The junior rusher has 273 rushing yards and a touchdown in the playoffs.
Whitehead’s top targets are senior Cameron Everts, senior Jaylon Porter and junior Michael Murrary.
All three receivers have at least 40 catches for over 700 receiving yards and 15-plus yards per reception.
The Needville defense will have plenty to handle Saturday against the Lampasas’ spread attack.
The question on the other hand: Will the Lampasas defense be ready for the Needville running attack?
Needville is averaging nearly 300 yards rushing per contest this season behind Mr. Texas Football Player of the Year finalist Ashton Stredick.
Stredick is averaging 240 yards per game and combined with junior Walker Warncke for 600 yards in last week’s win against Boerne.
Lampasas has allowed 288 yards per contest during the regular season, including 137.2 rushing yards per game.