Following a District 12-5A II opening win against Dayton, Barbers Hill faces its first test to its title hopes tonight in Nederland.
The Eagles (3-1, 1-0) travel the hour east with a battle against the host Bulldogs (1-3, 1-0) looming, which could provide a sneak peak on the potential, future district champs.
“It’s going to be a good game,” Barbers Hill head coach Tom Westerberg said. “They are very good at doing their thing and they try not to beat themselves. They aren’t really flashy and consistent in what they do.”
Nederland’s record may be a bit misleading having played and lost to three top caliber opponents in West Orange-Stark (21-20), Beaumont United (35-10) and Silsbee (43-27) who are a combined 9-3 so far this season.
Last week, they got off the mark with a 48-0 rout at Santa Fe.
“They are coached very well and are a consistent football team,” Westerberg said.
Nederland beat Barbers Hill 27-21 in Mont Belvieu as the Bulldogs scored late to earn the win.
“We made the mistake with a penalty on third down that set us back and we couldn’t get the first down,” Westerberg said. “We don’t stop them and they score with 35-40 seconds to go.
“It’s early in district, but we have to approach it as we want to win a district championship and what we have to do is win them all to do that. This is the second step toward one of our goals of winning the district championship.”
Against Dayton, a big third quarter broke open a 6-0 game at halftime in a 27-0 Barbers Hill win.
The inconsistent play on offense continued.
“One game it might be a turnover, one game it might be a penalty,” Westerberg said. “The Dayton game, early on, it was penalties. You live and your grow and every game is different.”
Senior quarterback Christian Kaopua has transitioned seamlessly into the position after attending school in Baytown and Humble the previous three years to when he last suited up for the Eagles. He has thrown for 733 yards and 13 touchdowns and rushed for 240 more yards and a score.
“I kept in contact with a lot of the players,” Kaopua said. “It was cool when I came back and clicked with them again. Our chemistry in football was building off on what we used to be. It was really smooth.
“I am happy to be back for sure. I always thought about coming back to Barbers Hill and I am happy with what’s going on.”