SCHERTZ, Texas — Three weeks ago Clemens was undefeated and fans weren’t worrying in Schertz.
Fast forward and the team has lost two of its last three games, granted against good teams. Had the Buffaloes won one or even both of those games, they’d be the district champs. Regardless, Clemens is fourth in its district and riding into the playoffs after losing a heartbreaker to Steele last week.
That doesn’t matter in the locker room, though. As coach Jared Johnston will tell you the games were very winnable and his team doesn’t sit and whine about it. Besides, it’s not like they lost to poor teams.
“When you play the schedule you play, the teams that you play, you want to win them all,” Johnston said. “But as far as hitting the panic button, there’s no sign of that. We just got to continue to work and get better at what we can do.”
Its next challenge will be O’Connor, who has a special offensive unit. In 10 games, the Panthers have scored less than 40 twice. The Buffaloes offense isn’t made to do that, as it hasn’t been over 30 since September 22.
The defense, however, is made to stop high-paced offenses and has done so for most of the year. Thankfully, for the Buffaloes, running back Marshawn Brown has not slacked during the rough patch. In fact, Johnston says he’s been a bright spot as he always is. In the two losses, the workhorse has put in for 252 yards rushing.
The issue is finishing the drives.
“Marshawn, he understands the big picture,” Johnston said. “The thing we want to do is continue to get better. Our goal is to get into the playoffs and then make a run. He feels good about it and he’ll be ready to run on Friday.”
Clemens has known it would get paired with O’Connor for a while. The Panthers are undefeated and are arguably the best team in San Antonio. But the district Clemens resides in is tough and has prepared the Buffaloes for what they face next.
“The district we play in is really good,” Johnston said. “I think that’s going to help us, at least in the fact of the type of athletes we’re going to see on Friday, it’s not the first time we’ve seen them. We’ve been seeing athletes and good teams all year long.
“I’ve always said if you get out of our district, you have an opportunity to play well in the playoffs just because the caliber teams we play week in and week out helps you play in the playoffs.”
The Friday night matchup is the Texas High School Football game of the week. It pairs two great teams who could both give anyone in the state a fight. Kickoff is at 7:30 on Friday night.