In a normal football season, the only time a team will get a second chance against an opponent is in the postseason. The only thing is, the pandemic took care of “normal” a long time ago.
With only one game left, Foothill expects a championship game atmosphere in its road game against Shasta Friday night in the Tri Counties Bank Game of the Week and the 2021 shortened season finale in the North State.
The Wolves (4-1) enter on a four-game winning streak since its season-opening loss to West Valley at home. One of those wins was a 42-14 contest at Foothill three weeks ago, which the Cougars (4-2) believe wasn’t an accurate portrayal of the squad they put on the field on a weekly basis.
“We did not rise to the challenge,” Brown told Shasta County Sports. “This should be our best week of practice ever because it’s our last week of practice ever. We have a lot of motivation. We wanted to play again (and) wanted to prove we’re better than what the score showed.”
It all starts with the defense for Foothill, which is giving up 14 points a game in the other five contests aside of allowing a season-high 42 points in the last meeting against Shasta.
But the Cougars are missing three starters on the defensive side of the ball due to health — two senior stud defensive linemen Eric Roberts and Caleb Tuggle and linebacker Caiden Williford. Junior backer Braden Cregger stepped to force two fumbles in place of Williford a week ago and the Cougars have Jarius Mast and Waylon Bell leading the secondary.
Shasta counters with an offensive attack that is keeping opponents guessing. The three-pronged rushing attack of between-the-tackles power fullback of Bryson Kimp, all-around talented wing James Weaver and speedy wing Hunter Pinkston provide a diverse and potent backfield capable of putting up points in bunches. Add in quarterback Layton Dunlap, who leads Shasta County with 557 passing yards, and the Wolves present a challenge for any defensive unit.
Defensively, Shasta has given up 40 points in the past four games and haven’t allowed more than 20 points in a game on the season.