When the Mansfield Legacy and Mansfield Lake Ridge football teams hook up on Friday night, it will not only pit two district rivals and teams from the same school district against one another, but also two of the stronger programs in District 10-5A.
Legacy coach Chris Melson said that it is always fun when the Broncos and Eagles meet on the gridiron and said he does not believe this season will be any different.
“We expect it to be a very physical, competitive game with Lake Ridge,” Melson said. “They are a very good team. They’re a tough team, and they always give us everything they’ve got. It should be a good game.”
Lake Ridge will have to account for the Broncos’ running game, as Legacy running back Kam Session is the leading rusher in 10-5A this season with nearly 900 yards and eight touchdowns heading into this past Friday’s game against Waxahachie.
Kendall Catalon is the top rushing quarterback in the district as well.
In spite of Legacy’s potent rushing attack, Lake Ridge coach Kirk Thor said he does not want his team to get too bogged down in concentrating on one area or even so much on what Legacy is doing to win ball games.
“Legacy is a very good football team,” Thor said. “Like every game, we are going to focus on what we can control and not worry about what we can’t.”
Thor said that one of the things that makes it such an exciting game is that players and coaches from both teams know each other very well and get along.
“I think any MISD game is big because many of our kids played together as younger kids,” Thor said. “Our coaches are all good friends, so there is a mutual respect between teams.”
Lake Ridge’s Jason Bean is one of the area’s top passers, and with Zack Jackson (14 yards per catch) as his main target, the Eagles could present problems for the Legacy defense.
Melson said that the fact that it is Lake Ridge and Legacy does add to the importance of the game, but mainly because of playoff positioning.
“I think it does add to it because of where they are in the standing,” Melson said. “For us to knock them off would be great for our team’s chances at the postseason, and the same is true for them beating us. It is definitely going to be an important game.”