Time: 7 p.m., Friday

Stadium: Earl Campbell Field at Christus Trinity Mother Frances Rose Stadium, 700 Fair Park Drive, Tyler, 75701 (Capacity: 12,500)


Euless Trinity: Chris Jensen (5th season, 41-10)

John Tyler: Ricklan Holmes (8th season; 66-26)

Radio: KTBB 97.5-FM/600-AM (Tyler-Longview). Broadcasters: Manny Almanza, Reginald Coleman

Last week: Euless Trinity 31, Colleyville Heritage 17; Longview 42, John Tyler 0.

Up next: Euless Trinity vs. Hurst L.D. Bell, 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 26 (Pennington Field, Bedford); Texas High at John Tyler, 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 27.


Players to watch

Euless: QB Marcus Ervin (6-3, 190) ... RB Zechariah Moore (5-7, 155, Jr.) ... RB Ollie Gordon ... RB A.J. Barrett ... OL Malakai Katoa

John Tyler: CB Kitan Crawford (6-0, 195, Sr.) ... LB Isaiah Johnson (6-2, 187, Sr.) ... LB Kameron Mayfield (6-1, 215, Sr.) ... LB Daveon Cummings (5-10, 185, Sr.) ... LB Tyrone Williams (6-0, 190)

Keys: The Trojans are averaging 300 yards rushing per outing for a total of 361.3 average. ... Zechariah Moore leads Trinity with 321 yards with three touchdowns on 63 carries. Quarterback Marcus Ervin is second with 151 yards and a TD on 18 attempts. He has thrown for 193 yards while hitting on 9 of 17 passing attempts for a TD. ... The Lions’ front of nose guard LaTravion Hawkins (6-1, 275, Jr.) and linemen Preston Johnson (6-3, 275, Jr.) and Jamaurea Britton (6-0, 210, Fr.) will be tested as well as linebackers Tyrone Williams (6-0, 190, Sr.), Daveon Cummings (5-10, 185, Sr.), Isaiah Johnson (6-1, 200, Sr.) and Kameron Mayfield (6-1, 215, Sr.).

He said it: “(Trojans) are always going to be a good football team. They are kind of like us, people expect them to win. We expect to win. We are going to finish up this last preseason game and we are going to be ready for district.” — Holmes


Players to watch

Euless Trinity: DT Poukesi Vakauta (6-2, 265) ... LB Zion Fonua (6-1, 225) ... LB Noa Lutui ... CB Micah Woodley

John Tyler: QB Cameron Ford (6-0, 190, Jr.) ... RB Kitan Crawford (6-0, 195, Sr.) ... C LeTavion Erwin (5-9, 225, Jr.) ... OL Kadarius Tave (6-1, 235, Soph.) ... WR Robert Draper (6-0, 185, Soph.)

Keys: The Lions have to get the offense cranking. JT is averaging 225 yards per game, which ranks sixth of the seven teams in District 7-5A Division I. ... Crawford, who also plays cornerback, leads the team in rushing with 175 yards and a TD on 17 attempts (10.29 yards per carry). Quarterback Cameron Ford is next at 101 yards and a TD on 44 carries. Sophomore Jakyron Lacy is third with 16 totes for 70 yards. ... Ford has thrown for 209 yards as he has hit 16 of 52 attempts for a TD and two interceptions. Isaiah Johnson, who also plays linebacker, has connected on 8 of 20 attempts for 54 yards. ... The Trojans defense is stingy, allowing 16.7 points a game and 228.3 yards.

He said it: “That is what it is always about. When I set the schedule, I set the schedule to win or struggle to win. So far we have been struggling without winning. It comes with the territory sometimes. We are a 5A football team — Division I — and we are playing all 6A teams, twice our size. A lot of them have double the amount of kids we have. A lot of that has to do with the amount of kids we have here. We lost a lot of kids because of the re-zoning and we are dealing with the effects of it now. As we go throughout the process — the years, it will get better and we will start getting more kids back.” — Holmes

Did you know: Last year’s game between the Lions and Trojans, scheduled for Bedford’s Pennington Field, was postponed due to potential inclement weather. ... This is the first meeting between the two schools on the gridiron. ... The Trojans won 10 consecutive district champions from 2005 until 2015. After a year’s absence from the top its league, Trinity won the district title in 2018 and was runner-up last year. The Trojans have made the playoffs 21 straight years. ... The Euless school, which has enrollment of 3,470, is in District 3-6A with Abilene, San Angelo Central, Haltom City, Hurst L.D. Bell, North Richland Hills Richland and Weatherford. Interesting, the distance from Euless to San Angelo is some 258 miles. The state of Connecticut is 110 miles from east to west and 70 miles from north to south, while Rhode Island is 37 miles east to west. ... The Trojans are 3-0 with victories over Waco Midway (20-14) in Bedford, 21-19 over Garland Sachse at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas and 31-17 over Colleyville Heritage in Grapevine. ... Euless Trinity has won three state titles (2005, 2007, 2009). The Lions have three state titles as well (1930,1973, 1994). ... Also, Cujo fans may want to get to the game early and take in the Trojans’ haka dance that the team performs before each game. The war dance embraces the culture of a population of immigrants from the island kingdom of Tonga, in the southwest Pacific east of Fiji. An estimated 3,000 people of Tongan descent live in Euless, a city of 54,769 (2016 estimate). Local officials said most of the Tongans were drew to the area because of Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. ... According to The Handbook of Texas Online, Trinity has grade levels of 10–12 and is a part of the Hurst-Euless-Bedford Independent School District. The school is named “Trinity” as an homage to the three cities comprised by the school district in which it is located: Hurst, Euless and Bedford (and also as a reference to the nearby Trinity River, which forms the southern border of the school district). ... In 1881 Elisha Adam and Julia Euless from Tennessee built a home and cotton gin near present day Euless and the community began to thrive. Local farmers decided to honor the young man whose presence seemed to coincide with better times, and the community was named for him. ... According to Dave Campbell’s Football Magazine in conjuction with Jerry Forrest at PigskinPrep.com, the computer ratings have Trinity favored by 19 points over the Lions. ... On TexasFootball.com, Euless Trinity is ranked No. 27 in Class 6A, down from No. 23 last week. JT is No. 30, down from No. 29 last week. ... Trinity began playing football in 1969. The Trojans have made the playoffs 33 times with 26 district titles and three state championships. The Trojans have an overall record of 429-158-6. ... The Lions began playing football in 1906 as Tyler High. They have an all-time record of 717-387-41 with 37 playoff appearances, 28 district titles, three state championships and two state runner-up trophies. The Lions’ playoff record is 59-31-3. ... JT is named after President John Tyler, who was instrumental in Texas joining the union. He was the 10th president of the United States from 1841 to 1845 after briefly serving as the 10th vice president. He was elected VP on the 1840 Whig ticket with President William Henry Harrison, who died after a month in office.

Twitter-sized preview: John Tyler hopes to get its offense on track as the district play looms.



Sports Editor

I am a native Tylerite and I grew up reading the Tyler Morning Telegraph and The Tyler Courier-Times. My parents took both the morning and afternoon papers. I came to work here 35 years ago at the age of 23, right after college.

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