During a week in which Scotus Central Catholic Football could use a cupcake on the schedule, the Shamrocks might instead be in line for a serving of humble pie.
In the midst of a two-game skid in which Scotus has often been its own worst enemy behind penalties and sloppy play, this week’s schedule sends the team on the road to Class C-1 No. 1 Pierce.
It’s the final non-district game before a slate of opponents that includes No. 3 Wahoo Neumann, No. 5 Lakeview and No. 6 Wahoo.
"It's a big challenge. But I tell our kids, you can't have diamonds without pressure. Iron sharpens iron," coach Tyler Linder said. "The better the competition we play the better we are as a team figuring out how good we can be. Pierce deserves their ranking. They're a talented ball club. We have to show up ready to play not in the fourth quarter, but in quarter number one."
After a Week 1 win over David City Aquinas, previously ranked in C-2 before an 0-2 start, Friday makes it three straight ranked opponents for Scotus following the losses to No. 8 Central City and No. 9 West Point-Beemer.
Regardless, no one left on the schedule is about to feel sorry for coach Tyler Linder and the Shamrocks. With the season approaching its midway point, the ‘Rocks need wins any way they can get them.
Friday, that means upsetting the top team in the state.
The Bluejays opened the 2018 season with a 48-29 victory over C-2 No. 1 Norfolk Catholic, dismantled Arlington 51-8 then made it 3-0 with a 58-42 victory over Ord.
"For me, to quite honest, the pressure is kind of off," Linder said. "In those games that we're supposed to win on paper, we're kind of our own worst enemy.
"Very few people are going to give us a shot on Friday just looking at records and looking at points scored and points allowed. Not a lot of people have confidence in the green and gold. But we do. We know what kind of football we're capable of. If we can come out and play a clean game, Scotus is going to be in it in the fourth quarter. That's where I think our guys shine."