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PREVIEW: Abilene vs. Cooper (TX)

October 1, 2013

ABILENE, TX – A win is much needed for both the Abilene Cooper Cougars and the Abilene Eagles when they meet in the annual “Crosstown Showdown” on Friday at 8:30 p.m. (EST) at Shotwell Stadium. More than 15,000 fans are expected for the game that’s part of the 2013 Great American Rivalry Series presented by the U.S. Army and Hibbett Sports.

Abilene and Cooper have had great success, as Abilene has gone to the playoffs 14 straight times and has 12 seasons with at least eight wins and Cooper has been playoff-bound six straight times with five straight eight-plus-win seasons.

But that may change this season, as the Eagles are off to a 1-4 start and is coming off back-to-back losses (32-10 to San Angelo Central last week), while the Cougars are 3-2 and coming off a 42-31 win over Odessa.

Abilene, coached by Steve Warren, went 12-1 last season, losing in the state quarterfinals to Midway 34-31. Senior quarterback Lorenzo Joe leads the way, as he has accounted for 1,590 total yards and 10 TDs this season. Senior back/receiver Trey Dye (a BYU commit) has 635 total yards and nine TDs. Senior lineman Jake McMillion, who is headed to Texas, anchors the defense.

Cooper, coached by Toby Moebes, is coming off a 9-3 season and is led by senior quarterback Derek Scott, who has thrown for 744 yards and seven TDs this season.

The Cougars hold a 31-20-1 series lead, despite the Eagles winning last season’s matchup 31-27 and eight of the last nine overall.

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What is the Great American Rivalry Series?

Each fall for over a century, high school football has been the centerpiece for families and communities on Friday night. In 2004, iHigh, Inc. created the Great American Rivalry Series to celebrate this uniquely American sport and the cultural phenomenon of “Friday Night in America.” The Series shines the spotlight on top high school football rivalries across the nation, where long-standing traditions are valued, expectations are sky high, and followers are committed.