SPARTA — Out of the frying pan and into the fire.
That’s the way the Highland Scots football team feels this week as they open Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference play by hosting North Union on Friday.
The Scots opened the season with neighborhood rival and perennial playoff team Fredericktown. A second-half comeback wasn’t enough to overcome some first-half mistakes and the Scots fell 28-21 to a Freddie team that made it to the state semifinals last fall.
This week, the Scots host North Union, who has made the playoffs the last two years and won the MOAC Red Division as well.
“We start right out in the fire,” said Highland coach Chad Carpenter. “That’s the way the schedule falls. We know we’ve got to be ready to go.”
The Wildcats are coming off an impressive 50-14 victory over Fairbanks in Week 1. North Union can mix it up, but usually relies on a strong, physical offense to pound teams into submission.
Senior running back Brandon Mercer (6-foot-3, 215 pounds) leads the way for the Wildcats. While Mercer does the pounding, Josh Smith, a 5-8, 155-pound senior, can run by the defense.