As if any extra motivation is needed, the winner of the Everman-Mansfield Summit football game clinches a berth in the Class 4A state playoffs.
Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. Friday at Vernon Newsom Stadium in Mansfield.
The matchup, the first between the southern Tarrant County schools, is also about which trophy case will house the gold-colored football trophy symbolic of the District 7-4A championship for 2010.
Everman (5-2, 4-0 in 7-4A), No. 5 in ESPNDALLAS.COM Class 4A rankings, has a streak of 11 consecutive playoff appearances dating from 1999. Five times in that streak the Bulldogs reached the state semifinals, twice winning a state championship.
Summit (6-1, 4-0), ranked No. 7, experienced success in the Class 5A ranks with five playoff seasons in eight years since the school opened in 2002. Changing boundary lines within the Mansfield ISD led to a lower enrollment at Summit and its drop to Class 4A this season.
So far, Everman’s road to 4-0 in district play has been more eventful than its opponent. The Bulldogs have won by one point (Arlington Seguin) and two points (Burleson).
No district team has been closer than a 14-point final score against Summit.
Everman needs to keep the ball away from what can be an explosive Jaguars offense.
To do that, the Bulldogs’ steady ground attack that features 959-yard rusher Cory Franklin must move the chains against a Summit defense that has allowed only two rushing touchdowns and an average of 121 rushing yards in district play.
Summit’s top offensive threats, quarterback Xavier Williams and Lewis Washington, are coming off big performances in last weeks’ 56-6 blowout of Joshua. Williams completed 10-of-11 passes for 159 yards and three touchdowns. Washington rushed 13 times for 199 yards and two touchdowns.