The Lions (1-3) face a formidable challenge right away in Wayne, a team that Scenters said is much more dangerous than its record might indicate.
"No one should be fooled. They have played a difficult pre-district schedule as well," he said. "They are about as good as they were last year, but the record is different because of the competition."
The Cardinals have lost to Monroe, Rockcastle and Russell counties and McCreary Central, giving up an average of 35.5 points in those games.
Garrard's opponents have averaged 34.5 points in its four games, but three of those games were decided by six points or less. The Lions are scoring 26.3 points per game; Wayne's average is just 13.8.
The Cardinals have won four of their last five games against the Lions, including two in Lancaster, but three of those games were decided by seven points or less.
"This is a tough district opener because Wayne County and Garrard County typically match up well against each other and have good ballgames," he said. "I'm ready for this game, I wish the game were today."
South Laurel (1-4) at Mercer County (0-5)
No team needs a fresh start quite like Mercer County.
The Titans lost all five of their non-district games, four of them by large margins, but they move into the next phase of their schedule Friday when they host South Laurel in their first Class AAAAA, District 7 game.
"We can officially excuse ourselves from an 0-5 start and look towards defending the district championship," Mercer coach Bill Mason said.
South Laurel is surely looking forward to starting over as well. The Cardinals' only win in five games is a six-point victory over Williamsburg, a 1-4 Class A school.
"I'm certain the South Laurel coach has sung the same tune: 'District play is when it counts, all our goals are intact, peak at the end of the year, continue to work and improve.' It is 100 percent true," Mason said.
"They have a new head coach, offensive coordinator and defensive coordinator, just like us. They lost a ton to graduation and are playing several young guys, just like us. I'd say we are very similar."
South Laurel's offense is averaging 11.4 points per game in its first year under coach Larry Welch, whose pro-I offense is built around the run.
Mason said his team has made great strides in some areas in the past five weeks, but he said some areas still have a ways to go.
"Our special teams have really come a long way, and our tackling is light years better than our first scrimmage. Executing the offense and defense has proven to be the biggest obstacle, but we're continuing to work and improve," he said.
Somerset (5-0) at Casey County (2-3)
Casey begins its Class AAA, District 5 schedule against an opponent that is riding high, but the Rebels snapped a three-game losing streak with a win at Powell County last week that coach Andy Stephens said helped his team's confidence and also helped them realize what they're capable of.
"A win can do a great deal to build some confidence. It also lets the guys know good things can happen for you if you work hard and put in the time you need to make us better," Stephens said.
"I think we still need to improve a great deal on our execution on both sides of the football. I think our effort can be a lot better. I think we need to focus on doing what were coached to do."
He also said the offense was more effective than in recent weeks.
"I think our execution was better. We were able to complete some passes when we really needed to and were able to convert our third downs," Stephens said.
Casey faces a potent Somerset offense that is stocked with seniors and adept at both running and throwing. The Briar Jumpers are averaging 31.4 points, while the Rebels are allowing 35.4 per game.
Wayne County at Garrard County
7:30 p.m. Friday, Lancaster
* RADIO/WEBCAST: WRNZ-FM (105.1) at 10 p.m. www.hometownlive.net
Cardinals: 0-4 (0-0 3A-5)
Golden Lions: 1-3 (0-0 3A-5)
* LAST MEETING: (2008) Wayne County 33-12
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South Laurel at Mercer County
7:30 p.m. Friday, Harrodsburg
WHBN-AM (1420) www.hometownlive.net
Cardinals: 1-4 (0-0 5A-7)
Titans: 0-5 (0-0 5A-7)
* LAST MEETING:
Mercer County 48-14
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Somerset at Casey County
7:30 p.m. Friday, Liberty
Briar Jumpers: 5-0 (0-0 3A-5)
Rebels: 2-3 (0-0 3A-5)
* LAST MEETING: