Parking is going to be a bit different this year for those attending Escalon High School football games.
Only those with parking passes will be allowed in at the back gate at the high school; others are asked to park at Escalon Covenant Church, which is across Escalon-Bellota Road from the high school or park along Stanislaus Street adjacent to the school and walk in.
New fencing has reduced the parking availability on the campus and the other locations should be utilized by fans wanting to attend the game. Those with handicapped placards should contact the school, 838-7073, to find out about where to park.
Also, this Friday’s game is the first home game of the season and will include a special performance by the Tiny Cougars cheerleaders, more than 70 strong joining in for a performance with their high school counterparts. The performance is planned at halftime of the varsity football game.
In terms of competition, the JV game starts at 5:30 p.m. and the varsity follows, with the Cougars welcoming in a new opponent, Liberty High of Madera.
Varsity head coach Mark Loureiro said the schools have never faced each other so his team will be watching a lot of film on the Hawks to help devise a game plan. Liberty comes in at 0-2, losing this past week to Mendota by a 25-19 final, coming in hungry for victory.
Escalon, after winning its opener against Enochs, fell by a 45-16 decision to Calaveras on the road this past week.
“Liberty runs the Wing T offense so they run a lot of the same stuff we do,” Loureiro said. “That will make it a little easier to prepare.”
Quarterback is Mark Brandt, with his top rushers Christian Baker and Keith Roth, with leading receiver Wyatt Roth. Top linemen include Ethan Clark and Spencer Howard.
Escalon will look to get back in the win column and Loureiro expects the team to be fired up for the home opener, hoping for a big crowd.
“This is a pivotal game for us,” Loureiro said. “It’s one we really feel we need to get.”