Victoria East is hoping the second time will be the charm.
The Titans suffered a 38-7 loss to Columbia in last week’s season opener, but hope for a better outcome when they host Gregory-Portland at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Memorial Stadium.
“We thought we were ready but we weren’t,” said East offensive lineman Hunter Crump. “We have to give 110 percent every game and continue to get better – starting with Gregory-Portland.”
The Titans (0-1) finished with 276 yards of total offense behind running backs William Garley and Alan Jimenez, Ethan White, Terrance Terrell and Tay Partida.
But Columbia totaled 397 yards through the air and on the ground.
“We’ve had a really good week of practice,” said East head coach Roland Gonzalez. “We have had to increase our tempo, and our focus has been play better than we did last week.”
Gregory-Portland, which is coming off a 45-12 win over Corpus Christi Carroll, is led by quarterback Jeremy Barker and running backs Joe Sauceda and Kaleem Gholsby.
Friday’s game will be a rematch of last year’s second regular-season game, in which the Wildcats edged East 25-22.
“They’re quick and they have size,” Crump said. “They’re not as big but they’e very fast. We will have to put our hands on them.”
East’s game against the Wildcats will be the team’s final non-district contest.
The Titans will look to make the most of Friday’s game with District 15-5A, Division I play starting next week.
“There’s a quick turnaround,” Gonzalez said. “We have one more game to tie up some loose ends before we go into the district for Miller. This is an important game for us.”