The performance of Hassan Ridgeway in Mansfield’s most recent victory convinced coach Jeff Hulme that his star defensive end is on track to have a big senior season.
“He took a big step forward in that game against Mansfield Summit,’’ Hulme said. “He started to show why he is so highly regarded.’’
Ridgeway, a 6-5, 245-pound University of Texas commit, is just 16 years old and may not yet be finished growing.
Mansfield (3-0), coming off a bye week, opens District 5-5A play against Mansfield Timberview (3-0) at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Vernon Newsom Stadium in Mansfield.
After playing well in the opener, Hulme said Ridgeway sat out the second game with a chest ailment and the Tigers allowed a season-high 27 points to Keller.
But he was back, wreaking havoc, two weeks ago in a 46-15 victory over rival Summit. Summit was held to 33 yards rushing on 20 carries in a 46-15 rout.
Hulme said it isn’t uncommon for the Tigers to move Ridgeway around to take advantage of favorable inside matchups.
So far, the Mansfield offense has taken pressure off its defense by scoring at least 40 points in all three wins.
But with talented Timberview quarterback Charles Taylor this week and Cedar Hill and Duncanville down the road, Ridgeway and the defense know more difficult tests await.