10-29-19Harrison and degrate.jpg

Daily Sun photo/Ron Farmer

Grant Harrison and Chris Degrate (26), seen here making a tackle against Sulphur Springs, both had big games in the Tigers’ 7-0 shutout against Forney last week.

If we know anything about the 2019 Corsicana Tigers, we know this: They are resilient.

They have bounced back all year and suddenly they find themselves in Week 10, facing their biggest test of the season  with a showdown against their biggest rival Friday night at Tiger Stadium.

Ennis’ state-ranked Lions, who are unbeaten in the District 8-5A DII race, will be in Corsicana Friday, and the Tigers need to bounce back once again after playing one of their worst games offensively  of the year.

The Tigers, who had averaged almost 30 points a game this season, scored just once and struggled moving the ball in the air and on the ground in their 7-0 win over Forney on Friday night on the road.

The defense had an inspired effort and came up with some big plays to nail down its first shutout of the season on a wet and chilly night.

But now Hal Wasson’s young team that began the season with tons of questions, has to find a way to bounce back one more time against what is arguably the best opponent on the schedule.

The Tigers have rebounded from long nights all year, starting with the second game of the season when they had to come back from a tough loss on opening night to state-ranked Burleson Centennial in a game where they had no running game to speak and a young secondary that struggled against Centennial’s talented Flex-bone offensive scheme.

But after that tough loss to begin the season the Tigers came home and played better than anyone could have imagined and had a dramatic comeback against a strong Saginaw Boswell team, scoring on a 12-yard run in the final seconds to cap off a 40-34 comeback that started when the Tigers trailed 34-20 in the third quarter.

Damarius Daniels and Anthony Young were inserted into the backfield that night, giving the Tigers an all-sophomore backfield, and that formula has worked since.

The three first-time starters have improved and the offense has bee formidable for most of the season, averaging alost 400 yards a game until last week.

The Tigers also bounced back strong after their longest night of the year three weeks ago in Royse City, where they lost 27-0 on a night when nothing went right.

They came back with a strong performance the next week and beat Sulphur Springs 41-14 with a dominating performance in the second half, outscoring Wildcats 20-0 to make a statement in that game.

That’s one reason last week’s 7-0 win was disappointing, because the Tigers had looked so strong the week before.

But this team has proven it can come back after a setback time and time again, and that’s what the goal is this week when they face Ennis, which has beaten Corsicana in the final week of the season in recent years.

Wasson and his assistant coaches have done a remarkable job this season bringing this young team along/

It’s been well documented that the Tigers lost 92 percent of its offense to graduation, and when Wasson showed up in January there were just 30 players on the roster. The Tigers have seen 16 new Tigers who had never played on a Friday night help give the team talent and depth in this growing pains season.

Wasson’s kids have already clinched a playoff berth -- which seemed like such a long shot back in August -- and have stepped up all year, changing games and changing minds along the way.

And now they face their biggest test before opening the playoffs in two weeks. And they will have to find their own momentum this week and bounce back one more time from a tough Friday night on the road.

The Tigers are unbeaten at home, and Wasson expects a big crowd for the showdown against Ennis. He also expects his team to bounce back from the Forney game and make the showdown must-see-TV for a fanbase that has been waiting for a Tiger team to make a run in the playoffs.

The next step comes Friday for Wasson, who likes to say it’s all about the next play and the next game, and the focus on both.

It’s Ennis Week in Corsicana, and if we know anything about the 2019 Corsicana Tigers we know this: They are resilient ...

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