Highland Park has been in this situation before, so they know the potential pitfalls.
The Scots have emerged from the toughest stretch of their schedule with sole possession of first place in District 15-5A. Now they face a couple of games against opponents near the bottom of the standings with the playoffs looming in the near future.
In other words, since such a position is familiar, don’t expect a letdown from HP when they travel to Forney on Friday night.
The Scots (6-1, 4-0) have won five straight games overall, including a 40-29 victory last week against Mesquite Poteet that broke a tie atop the league standings. Now HP is alone in that spot, while Poteet sits in a three-way tie for second with Wylie East and West Mesquite.
The Scots picked the right game to put together their most prolific and most balanced offensive performance of the season against the Pirates.
They racked up 609 yards of total offense, led by a 381-yard passing performance by John Stephen Jones (including two touchdowns) and a 145-yard rushing effort by Jack Kozmetsky (also including two touchdowns).
That came against a Poteet defense that hadn’t surrendered more than 24 points against any other opponent this season. And that includes state powers such as Denton Ryan and Mansfield Lake Ridge. In other words, HP has found its groove.
Meanwhile, Forney has dropped four of its past five games overall, including a 30-14 loss to West Mesquite a week ago in which the Jackrabbits (3-4, 1-3) completed just four of 20 passes. They haven’t scored more than two touchdowns in a game since a Week 2 victory over Lindale.
On offense, Forney is led by dual-threat quarterback Devon Rideaux and by 260-pound running back Jaylon Hutchings, who also is a standout on the defensive line.
HP has dominated the series between the two teams. In the past six meetings dating back to 2004, the Scots have outscored the Jackrabbits by an average margin of 43-10.