Yoakum, Cuero continue DeWitt County rivalry
Yoakum Bulldogs at Cuero Gobblers
7:30 p.m. Friday, Cuero Gobbler Stadium
DQ Big Game of the Week
Highlights: Midnight, Fox Sports Southwest
Radio: KYKM, 92.5 FM & KBAR, 100.9 FM
The rivalry between Yoakum and Cuero has been around for more than a century.
As far as the players are concerned, it never gets old.
"It's fun," said Yoakum senior Blake McCracken. "You're going up against a lot of the people you know and you're friends with. There's a little trash talking going on now and then. We're going to do the talking with our pads on Friday."
Yoakum earned the right to do most of the talking with its 25-21 win last season.
The Bulldogs broke a nine-game losing streak against Cuero and ended the Gobblers' 42-game district winning streak.
Yoakum (4-2, 1-0) and Cuero (2-4, 0-1) will continue the DeWitt County rivalry in a District 26-3A game Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Gobbler Stadium in Cuero.
"This game is special. It huge to all of us," said Cuero senior Ross Riemenschneider. "It's really important since we lost last year. We're coming back and we need our wins in district."
Yoakum opened district by rallying for a 27-24 win at Smithville last week.
"They had to go over to Smithville, which is a tough place to play and they found a way to do it," said Yoakum coach Brent Kornegay. "I told them after the game we never led until one minute and 53 seconds so that's a credit to our kids for battling back every time."
Yoakum could go 2-0 in district for the first time since 2004 with a win over Cuero and take another step toward its first playoff berth since 2009.
"To start off district 2-0 would be big," McCracken said. "I think if we play the way we can play, we can make a deep run in the playoffs."
Cuero dropped a 41-28 decision to No. 7 Giddings in its district opener and a loss to Yoakum would put them one step closer to missing the playoffs for a second straight season.
"The main thing going into this game is getting a district win," said Cuero coach Travis Reeve, "and trying to solidify our spot going toward getting in the playoffs."
Reeve returned to Cuero this season after a two-year absence and is pleased with his team's progress.
"Our kids have been extremely resilient," Reeve said. "The fact we're getting some guys back will hopefully help us."
The game has been chosen as the DQ Big Game of the Week and FOX Sports Southwest will be in Cuero on Friday.
A segment will air on High School Spotlight on Friday at midnight.
The coaches are used to the hoopla surrounding the game, but want their players' attention to be on the field.
"This game is another step toward reaching what our goal is and we've got to take care of business," Kornegay said. "It's just a matter of approaching it the right way and getting ourselves ready to play."
"You get excited about the game, but you can't lose focus on the little things," Reeve said. "It's still a 48-minute football game like we've played however many times this year. We've just got to go out and execute the things we've practiced all week."
NOTES • Former Cuero coach Buster Gilbreth, who led the Gobblers to the state final in 1970, 1973, 1974 and 1975 and state titles in '73 and '74 will be honored at halftime.
• The DQ Big Game of the Week segment will be replayed on FOX Sports Southwest on Saturday at 9 a.m.