DISTRICT 7-5A Division I

Sherman Bearcats (4-5, 3-2)

vs.

John Tyler Lions (6-2, 5-0)

7:30 p.m. Friday
Trinity Mother Frances Rose Stadium, Tyler

Coaches

  • Sherman: JD Martinez
  • John Tyler: Ricklan Holmes

Last week

Next week

  • Sherman: vs. TBD, bi-district playoffs
  • John Tyler: vs. TBD, bi-district playoffs

Players to watch

Sherman

  • QB Blaise Bentsen, Sr., 6-5, 235 (96-of-181, 1,019 yards, 8 TDs, 6 INTs; 128 carries, 463 yards, 9 TDs)
  • RB Miketavion Brown, Jr., 5-6, 176 (184 carries, 1,111 yards, 9 TDs; 7 catches, 128 yards, 2 TDs)
  • TE Blake Steele, Sr., 6-2, 190 (11 catches, 212 yards, 1 TD)
  • WR Tate Bethel (22 catches, 200 yards, 1 TD)
  • RB Damian McKee, Sr. (76 carries, 444 yards, 3 TDs)
  • DB Gage Smith, Sr., 6-0, 170 (47 tackles, 4 for loss, 1 sack, 1 INT, 1 fumble recovery)
  • LB Brandon Bonilla, So., 5-10, 190 (31 tackles, 5 for loss, 3 sacks)

John Tyler

  • WR Ke'Andre Street, Sr., 6-2, 200 (22 catches, 654 yards, 8 TDs; committed to Houston)
  • RB Roderick Hawkins, Sr., 5-8, 190 (101 carries, 985 yards, 8 TDs; 8 catches, 107 yards)
  • RB/CB Cameron Grant, Sr., 5-10, 185 (47 carries, 440 yards, 6 TDs; 30 tackles, 1 for loss, 2 INTs, 11 PBUs, 1 forced fumble)
  • OL Chance Billington, Sr., 6-4, 275 (committed to Louisiana-Monroe)
  • QB Devlen Woods, Sr., 5-8, 170 (66-of-112, 1,432 yards, 15 TDs, 4 INTs; 45 carries, 194 yards, 2 TDs)
  • RB Ka'Darian Asbell, Sr., 5-10, 210 (21 carries, 248 yards, 2 TDs)
  • DE Christian Hartsfield, Sr., 5-10, 221 (45 tackles, 5 for loss, 6 sacks, 1 blocked punt)
  • DT Ja'Bralen Yarber, Sr., 6-1, 280 (43 tackles, 5 for loss, 2 sacks, 13 QB pressures; committed to Northwestern State)

Just the facts

  • John Tyler is 5-1 against Sherman since 1908. The Lions won the most recent meeting in 2011, 45-21.
  • Lions receiver Ke'Andre Street doubled his touchdowns in this past week's game against Mesquite Poteet. He also caught the game-winning Hal Mary touchdown pass.
  • John Tyler is averaging 469.3 yards per game (200.3 passing and 269 rushing).
  • Lions running back Roderick Hawkins has been on a tear over the past three games, setting a season-high in rushing yards in each game. He is averaging 185.3 yards and has four touchdowns during that span.
  • Sherman is averaging 337.1 yards per game (111.1 passing and 226 rushing).
  • The Bearcats have caused 13 turnovers this season (five interceptions and eight fumbles).
  • Sherman tight end Blake Steele is averaging 19.3 yards per catch.

Key matchup: Roderick Hawkins against the Sherman defense. If Sherman wants to have a shot, it's going to have to find a way to stop Hawkins. The John Tyler running back has been on a tear in his past three games and has rushed for more than 200 yards in the past two. Defenses can't find an answer for the power back, who has helped the Lions jump out to early leads.

John Tyler running back Roderick Hawkins (© ETSN.fm)

The Bearcats should look to slow the run so John Tyler can't control the clock. Brandon Bonilla has had a successful sophomore campaign thus far and leads the team in sacks with three. If he can get to the running backs the same way he has the quarterback this season, it would greatly benefit Sherman's chances of winning.

Don't be surprised if: Ke'Andre Street continues to impress. He likely won't repeat his four-touchdown performance against Mesquite Poteet, but Street seems to be finding a rhythm with quarterback Devlen Woods at the right time. If he can carry over a modicum of his massive game into this one, the Lions should keep rolling and finish district play unscathed.