Kilgore & Lindale Start New Rivalry For District - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

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Kilgore & Lindale Start New Rivalry For District

District 14-4A gets underway tonight, and the defending co-champion Kilgore Bulldogs are glad to be playing again for real.

"Yeah, it's a whole new season," Kilgore center Colby Rosen said. "Up until now, it doesn't even count. It's a whole different level."

Back over in Smith County, the Lindale Eagles have quietly put together an undefeated pre-district run, and at 5-0, they've already won as many games as they did last year. They know as of right now, that means nothing.

"It's a lot more intense, "Lindale linebacker Alex Eisenmann said, "because the competition really steps up."

"Playing preseason is all build-up," Lindale quarterback Nathan Simmons said. "We're starting over after a 5-0 record, and we're going to try to get another 5-0."

Tonight, the district starts with two teams that have never played each other., but two teams who want to get that first win and start a rivalry.

"They don't know us, so they don't respect us," Eisenmann said. "We're going to get something going, show them who we are."

"It'll be a surprise," Rosen said. "You play these other teams you've played so many times in the past, this'll be a surprise."

"I look at it like playing a team like Palestine," Kilgore running back Frank Reddic said. "We're just going to go out and play physical. That's what we do."

With both teams eyeing the playoffs, this district opener is more than just bragging rights. This will set the tone for the entire season.

"If we beat this team," Simmons said, "hopefully it will send a message to the rest of the district."

"This will be a big game for us to win and set the tone," Reddic said, "it's hard to play catchup in district if you drop that first one."

Reid Kerr can be reached at rkerr@kltv.com.

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