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LOOKING FOR #4 - District Battle Begins Friday As Billies Face
Off Against Boerne
The quest for a fourth straight district championship begins for the, Fredericksburg High
School varsity football team this Friday, Oct. 9, when the Boerne Greyhounds come to town
for a 7:30 p.m.. 28-AAAA opener.
The first of five league games for the Billies, the Parents
Night clash at FHS Stadium will serve as the tie-breaker for the two schools' most-recent
series (3-3) that began in 1992.
Boerne, which finished the 1997 campaign in fourth place in
the old District 27-AAAA, brings a 2-3 pre-district record under new head coach Jeff Dicus
into Friday's battle.
After dropping their first two games to Jefferson (34-0)
and Marble Falls (26-0), the Greyhounds ripped off two straight victories over San Antonio
O'Connor (28-12) and Sam Houston (34-7) before dropping last week's pre-loop finale to
neighbor Smithson Valley (28-0).
"Boerne is a lot better than their record might
indicate," said FHS head coach Jerald Klett whose Billies are just one rung up from
the Hounds in pre-district standings (3-2). "They will be fired up and ready."
He characterized the Hound defense as formidable.
"They give you a lot of looks and like to bring a lot
of people at you," Klett said. "They might even have as many as 10 players up on
the line, so we'd better be ready."
The kingpin in the Hound defensive attack is middle
linebacker Casey Freeland (6-3, 210) who Klett said covers the field well. "He is
undoubtedly among the best middle linebackers in the area."
Other key elements in Boerne's 4-3 defensive lineup are
left tackle Jesse Felder (250), right tackle Anthony Gonzales (215), left end Thomas
Phariss (180) and right end Robert Beadie (190).
On offense, where the Hounds "mix it up pretty
well" with the multiple-I, power-I and one-back formations, a real threat is posed by
senior quarterback Joseph Brann (6-2, 180) who is.' a transfer from Mission.
"He has a heck of an arm and is a real double-threat
because he also runs so well," Klett said.
Another big link in Boerne's offensive game Friday is
likely to be junior fullback Deets Finley (5-10, 190) who is expected to be back in action
after missing last week's Smithson Valley game due to an injury that was sustained against
Finley often works as a blocking back for junior tailback
Jesse Short (175) who "runs real hard and who is difficult to bring down."
Up front, the Hound offensive line is very big, with the
smallest player being a 190-pound center.
Others in that forward wa1l are right tackle Jesse Felder
(250), left tackle Luke Smith (275), left guard Shane Davis (215), right guard Chris
Gonzales (220) and tight end Trey Brant (210).
As for the Billies, the FHS varsity sports 28-AAAA's
second-best pre-district record at 3-2 --just behind pre-season favorite Alamo Heights
Fredericksburg had started off the year with a pair of
lopsided wins over Llano (33-0) and Bandera (27-7), only to be shut out in back-to-back
losses to Smithson Valley (34-0) and Clemens (22-0).
But then better times returned this past Friday when the
Billies ended their slide with a 30-11 win over Dripping Springs.
Klett said just about everyone should be suited up for
Friday's league opener although junior lineman John Merz is doubtful due to a hip injury
suffered against Dripping Springs.
Senior right guard Dale Woerner, who is recovering from a
broken foot, resumed limited workouts this week as did senior defensive back Justin
Jenschke as he bounces back from a nagging shoulder injury.
"Otherwise, I think we should be in good shape for
Boerne," Klett said Tuesday. "But we'll need to get after it and play hard in
all phases of the game in order to win. It will be our first tough challenge in a string
of five tough district games."
Fredericksburg has won the past two meetings with Boerne by
13-0 (last year) and 13-8 (in 1996) after the Hounds won the 1995 battle, 12-6.
OFFENSE SWALLOWS TIGERS - As Varsity Takes 30-11
Held scoreless in their two previous games, the Fredericksburg High School varsity
football team here Friday breathed new life into its offensive game by scoring a 30-11
homecoming victory over Dripping Springs.
The real explosion Came late in the contest when, after
leading by only narrow margins through three quarters, the Billies took advantage of a
series of Tiger mistakes to score 16 points within five minutes of play.
In the process, Dripping Springs sustained its first loss
in five games, while the Billies closed out pre-district play on the positive side, 3-2.
"Overall, our kids did a good job responding to a very
good football team," said FHS head coach Jerald Klett. "It was a good warm-up
The visiting Tigers, who defeated Fredericksburg (13-7) in
overtime last fall, actually had better field position here Friday as they drove into
Billie territory on seven of nine possessions.
However, the FHS defense refused to knuckle under and
allowed the Tigers, who previously in 1998 had outscored their opponents by a wide margin
(121-86), to dent the Billie 20 only three times.
The key rejection of the night came immediately before
half-time when Dripping Springs had to give up the ball on downs after having
first-and-goal at the Fredericksburg two-yard line.
"That goalline stand seemed to set the tone and give
us momentum for the second half," said Klett whose team ended up edging the visitors
in total offense, 268-256.
The end of good times for the Tigers came early in the
fourth period just after Dripping Springs quarterback Britt Peterson scored on a 12-yard
touch-down run. He then threw a two-point conversion pass to Regan Foster with 11:27 to go
to narrow Fredericksburg's lead to 14-11.
However, that would be the end of any further serious
scoring threats by the visitors as the Tigers never again earned a first down and in fact
were thereafter held to a net minus-seven yards in total offense.
In the meantime, the Billies were taking advantage of Tiger
Midway in the fourth, a bobbled punt snap gave
Fredericksburg the ball at the DS 43. Six plays later, senior running back Freddy Cantu
scored one of his three TDs of the night on a one-yard scamper. Charles Klein kicked the
PAT, and FHS' outlook improved, 21-11.
But Fredericksburg's good times did not end there as Billie
special teams player David Garcia recovered a Tiger fumble at the DS 34 on the ensuing
Four plays later produced another Billie score, with Cantu
scoring from 21 yards out. Klein added his last of four PAT kicks to put the locals up,
28-11, with 3:55 left on the clock.
Three minutes later, Dripping Springs was stung again when
the visitors were stopped at their own 21 and a deep snap sailed over the Tiger punter's
head beyond the end zone for a safety.
That score with just 1:01 left on the clock capped an
effort that had begun on the Billies' initial possession of the night when Fredericksburg
scored the game 5 first TD.
After junior Chris Weirich returned the opening kickoff 61
yards to the Tiger 21, Cantu capped a six-play march by scoring from the two. Klein then
kicked the point-after with 8:33 remaining in the first quarter.
Dripping Springs drew next blood on a 39-yard field goal in
the first by Russell Cameron (5:19), only to have the Billies counter in the second (7:06)
when Weirich dove into the end zone on a nine-yard carry. Klein's toe made it 14-3, and
that's how the score stood until the Tigers closed to within three with their fourth
Along with his three touchdowns, Cantu ended up with the
lion's share of Fredericksburg's 192 yards rushing as he carried the ball 22 times for 119
yards while also catching two passes for 31 yards.
In the air, FHS junior quarter-back T.J. Theis connected on
four of eight passes for 76 yards as senior receiver Heath Holloway snared two aerials for
On the other side of the ball, Dripping Springs tailback
Tony Salazar led all runners with 129 yards on 13 tries, while Tiger signal caller Britt
Peterson completed six of 15 passes for 66 yards. Matt Hightower was his team's top
receiver at 34 yards on three catches.
Defensively for the Billies, senior Grant Gold led the way
with six tackles and one assist, while other key performers included Weirich (6-0), Casey
Montandon (4-3), Drew Woerner (4-2), Kyle Treibs (4-1) and Kaleb Kothe (4-1).
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