District action begins for area

District play signals the start of a whole new season for Iowa high school football teams.

From here on out, there will be an extra sense of urgency and even less margin for error.

Right off the bat, several key Week 3 games could go a long way toward deciding district champions.

In Class 2A, South Central Calhoun tries to jump into the win column against Clarion-Goldfield.

Manson Northwest Webster faces Ridge View in a battle of 1A unbeatens.

No. 3 Newell-Fonda and North Iowa will also put their perfect records on the line in eight-man, along with fourth-ranked West Bend-Mallard and Northeast Hamilton.

Here’s a closer look at tonight’s area action:

Clarion-Goldfield (1-1) at South Central Calhoun (0-2)

After rebounding with a 42-0 shutout of Eagle Grove last Friday, the Cowboys will look to keep moving in a positive direction.

Sophomore Zach Pogge has been the focal point in Clarion-Goldfield’s rushing attack, accumulating 220 yards and two touchdowns on 25 carries.

Quarterback Trenton Sann, a junior, has also managed 340 yards of total offense, including three scores.

Caleb Hanson and Joel Haberman have posted 15 and 14 tackles, respectively, for a Cowboy defensive unit, which has forced six takeaways – three interceptions and three fumble recoveries.

Bryan Case’s Titans are coming off rare back-to-back losses to Manson Northwest Webster (27-16) and Humboldt (14-0). Seniors Cody Schoop (19 attempts, 120 yards, 0 TD) and Kyler Case (17-116-1) are the offensive stars for South Central Calhoun, which dropped a 17-14 decision to Clarion-Goldfield last year.

Signal-caller Jake Petzenhauser is 16-for-33 through the air for 241 yards.

Rylan Richardson has accounted for a team-high 31 stops from his linebacker spot.

Ridge View (2-0) at Manson Northwest Webster (2-0)

This matchup has all the makings of a barnburner. The Cougars rolled to a 55-8 road victory over Prairie Valley a week ago.

MNW junior quarterback Alex Bush has connected on 24 of 44 passes for 366 yards, including three scores. Bush has also produced 105 yards and reached paydirt four times on the ground.

Hudson Spedding, a senior, has hauled in a team-best 11 catches for 159 yards and a touchdown.

Coy Snell is the other main weapon in the Cougar backfield, gaining 129 yards on 11 totes.

Senior linebackers Tanner Peterson and Ty Condon have combined for 40 tackles and a fumble recovery to anchor MNW defensively.

The Raptors prevailed over Lawton-Bronson (34-21) and Woodbury Central (34-8) in their two previous outings.

Dual-threat signal-caller Ryan Garthoff has been the catalyst for Ridge View, netting 340 rushing yards and seven scores. Garthoff, a senior, has gone 23-for-31 through the air as well for 233 yards, with a pair of touchdowns.

John Kofmhal is the leading receiver for the Raptors, pulling down eight grabs for 89 yards.

In 2012, MNW escaped with a 34-28 triumph over Ridge View. The Cougars received six votes in the latest rankings, while the Raptors picked up two.

North Iowa (2-0) at No. 3 (8-Man) Newell-Fonda (2-0)

Both the Mustangs and Bison are riding a wave of momentum into their district opener.

Last Friday, Newell-Fonda hammered Kingsley-Pierson by a 73-0 final. Brady Bohe, a senior, has served as the workhorse in the punishing Mustang ground charge, amassing 395 yards and finding the endzone eight times on 34 carries. Bohe actually ranks eighth among all 8-Man players in total rushing yards. On the defensive side of the ball, Bohe has registered a team-high 35 stops, while Dillon Anderson has added two picks.

A week ago, North Iowa notched a 26-14 home triumph over Harris-Lake Park. Sophomore Alex Paulson has been a consistent performer for the Bison, racking up 343 yards and six scores on 47 totes, while also pacing the Bison in stops (16).

Austin Paden has chipped in 107 rushing yards and four touchdowns for North Iowa, who earned a pair of votes in the most recent polls.

Newell-Fonda downed the Bison last fall, 34-20.

Northeast Hamilton (2-0) at No. 4 (8-Man) West Bend-Mallard (3-0)

Fresh off a 28-18 victory at defending state champion Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn, the Wolverines appear to be just hitting their stride.

Seniors Davey Jergens (25-192-5), Jesse Zinnel (30-148-3) and Jordan Buhs (29-146-4) supply West Bend-Mallard with a dangerous backfield trio. Zinnel has also completed 14 of 31 passes for 229 yards and a score. Twin brother Jason Zinnel is the leading receiver for the Wolverines, reeling in six catches for 103 yards.

Nathan Grimm has posted a state-best 52 tackles from his linebacker position for WB-M. As a collective unit, the stingy Wolverines are allowing only 223.7 total yards per contest.

Through the first two weeks, the Trojans have been nearly unstoppable, outscoring their opponents by a lopsided combined margin of 96-13. Last Friday, Northeast Hamilton whipped Colo-Nesco, 44-0.

Tyler Smith, a senior, ranks second in the state in rushing yards (514) for the Trojans, while reaching paydirt on seven occasions.

Gabe Rapp spearheads Northeast Hamilton defensively with 32 stops.

The Trojans, who tallied two votes in the latest rankings, clearly have revenge on their minds after being trounced by WB-M a year ago, 52-12.

Other area games tonight: Charles City (0-2) at No. 10 (3A) Webster City (2-0); Iowa Falls-Alden (1-1) at No. 8 (3A) Humboldt (2-0); Waverly-Shell Rock (1-1) at Algona (1-1); Estherville-Lincoln Central (1-1) at East Sac County (2-0); Shenandoah (1-1) at Greene County (0-2); North Union (0-2) at Emmetsburg (0-2); Pocahontas Area (0-2) at Sioux Central (1-1); Eagle Grove (0-2) at Nashua-Plainfield (2-1); No. 10 (A) Bishop Garrigan (1-1) at Prairie Valley (0-2); Southeast Webster-Grand (1-1) at Lake Mills (1-1); CAL (0-2) at Corwith-CWL (1-2); Laurens-Marathon (1-1) at Graettinger-Terril/Ruthven-Ayrshire (1-1).