LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - In each of the last three seasons Central Catholic & Pioneer have squared off in the State Tournament. The Knights and Panthers are both successful programs but only one has made a deep run each fall.
The 3x defending state champions have owned the recent series against Pioneer. The Knights have outscored the Panthers 107-18 in the last three meetings and understand if they aren't careful, this year could be different.
"It doesn't really matter what has happened in the past because anything can change and we have to come out with the same mentality that we have the past three years to smack them in the mouth from the beginning," said senior Timmy Mills. "They have some good playmakers and at any point they can break a play open and we have to be ready for it and play to the best of our abilities," said Mills.
"You can't overlook anybody anymore because if you do then your season is over and we definitely don't want that," said senior Andrew Hubertz. Just playing them in general is always fun and always competitive and usually it brings out a good crowd which is a great atmosphere to play in," said Hubertz.
For the third time in four years the Class 1A showdown will take place at LaRocca Field, a place the Knights haven't lost a game since October 31, 2008.
"I think it's great, we have a lot of fans that come out and support us and it's always great to play on this field," said senior Brad Schrader. "It's a home game and of course we don't want it to be our last. Being a senior, this could be my last game and I want three more," said Schrader.
"What's important is that we got our home fans. We have a great fan base that travels well. Our student body does a great job in supporting our football program," said Central Catholic Head Coach Kevin O'Shea. "Having Pioneer here with the way our season was at the end of the year with three straight on the road, we haven't been here very much and it's nice to be home," said O'Shea.
It's 10-1 Central Catholic versus 10-1 Pioneer, two programs that are built on fundamentals and playmakers.
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