A rematch from the previous year’s playoffs is always fun and that’s what we’ll see tonight when Austin LBJ takes on Vista Ridge. The Jaguars knocked out Vista Ridge in the 2014 bi-district round of the playoffs, beginning an inspired postseason run by head coach Andrew Jackson’s team.
LBJ started off with a shutout victory over Wyatt in Week 1, but the Rangers from Vista Ridge are ready for revenge. Both teams are state-ranked and expected to make the playoffs again in 2015, but it is Vista Ridge who returns the most players from the last meeting. Quarterback Alex Snow returns to lead Vista Ridge after an all-district season. The senior had over 130 yards passing and rushing in the Rangers’ opening-season victory over Seguin.
LBJ isn’t as settled at quarterback. The Jaguars used three different quarterbacks in Week 1, but it was DeAndre Wytaske who made the biggest impact. He accounted for four touchdowns in the win. Wytaske, a senior, threw for a touchdown, rushed for two and even caught a pass for a score. The Jaguars are loaded with athleticism, including wide receiver Kevin Waites, and it’ll be up to a Vista Ridge defense that returned seven starters from last year’s bunch to slow down the Jaguars tonight. Waites caught three touchdown passes and recorded 135 reception yards in Week 1.
Defensive back Tyler Harris and linebacker RJ Phillips led a Vista Ridge defense that allowed just eight points in the season opener. Senior defensive lineman Jay Mobley is the Rangers’ best player up front. Vista Ridge’s district is loaded with teams like Cedar Park and Vandegrift, so LBJ will be a great test for an experienced group ready to lead its team further in the playoffs this season.
For LBJ, FBS recruit Jonnie Williams, a defensive lineman receiving a ton of recruiting attention, helped the Jaguars post their third shutout in the last 11 games. Vista Ridge is the best team LBJ will face before the playoffs due to the Jaguars playing in District 26-5A, so a challenge like tonight’s will provide a litmus test for a team likely not to be challenged again until the bi-district round of the playoffs.