Prep Spotlight: Week 4
Last Friday, the majority of the state – outside of Class 4A – opened up district football action.
Now, after seeing what it will take to put together a postseason run, coaches are fine-tuning and adjusting where it’s needed most.
Tonight, a number of area squads can move one step closer to earning a coveted playoff berth.
In Algona, a pair of Top-10 Class A rivals square off, as fourth-ranked AGWSR meets up with No. 9 Bishop Garrigan.
The Golden Bears have reeled off two straight since a season-opening loss to St. Edmond.
A few miles south, eighth-ranked (3A) Humboldt must avoid looking ahead when they host long-time North Central Conference rival Algona.
The Wildcats have a key meeting with No. 6 Clear Lake next week on the docket.
South Central Calhoun has arguably had one of the toughest schedules in the state to date, and that gets amped up another degree this evening when they travel to top-ranked (2A) Carroll Kuemper.
Here’s a more in-depth look at those games taking place around the area tonight:
No. 4 (A) AGWSR (4-0, 1-0) at No. 9 (A) Bishop Garrigan (2-1, 1-0)
Last year, the Golden Bears pulled out a 14-6 victory on AGWSR’s home field.
Junior quarterback Reece Wadle tossed touchdown passes to Brayton and Chris Loss in that win, and all three return looking to make it two straight over the Cougars.
Wadle, in his third year as a starter, is completing just under 59-percent of his passes for 203 yards on the year. Chris Loss has been his favorite target, connecting six times for 92 yards, but Zac Kibby (5-49) and Ben Vaske (6-37) have also been focal points of the aerial attack.
Brayton Loss, Wadle and Connor Langerman have ran for a combined 488 yards and nine scores.
The Garrigan defense will be primed to stop the “Triple C” rushing attack of AGWSR’s Clay Bohner, Clay Meinders and Cody Williams.
Combined, those three have ran for 902 yards, while Levi Stockdale adds another 242 and Darrick Kyle-Murphy 190.
Williams has seven touchdowns, while Meinders has six. Bohner and Meinders are averaging over seven yards per carry.
As a unit, the Cougars are fourth in the state with 1,378 yards on the ground.
BGHS head coach Marty Wadle is a master at planning different attacks, and you can bet the veteran has been keying all week on limiting big plays by the AGWSR backfield.
Algona (1-2, 0-1) at No. 8 (Class 3A) Humboldt (3-0, 1-0)
On paper, the Wildcats should cruise in this one, as they have scored 40-plus points twice and pitched a shutout in their other contest.
Last year, a 35-6 win over the Bulldogs jump-started Humboldt on a seven-game win streak that included a trip to the second round of the playoffs.
Junior workhorse Brady Ross has picked up right where he left off, rushing for 410 yards and six TDs. Backfield mate Nikko Wheeler has another 178 and five scores.
Jaxon Heinz has replaced Ben Jacobson and not missed a beat, completing 78-percent of his passes for 237 yards.
Expect more of those three vs. an Algona defense that has surrendered just 28 points on the year.
Despite a 1-2 mark, the Bulldogs have been close, falling 12-6 to Forest City and 10-6 to Waverly-Shell Rock. Tyler Frideres anchors the unit with 41 tackles, with Mason Decker adding 29 and six for loss.
If they are to pull the upset, Weston Shaw might be the one to do it. As a quarterback, Shaw has 446 yards and three touchdowns, while adding another 159 on the ground.
South Central Calhoun (1-2) at No. 1 (2A) Carroll Kuemper (3-0)
Bryan Case and the Titans snapped a two-game losing skid at home last week, topping Clarion-Goldfield 28-19.
They will need to dig deep vs. No. 1 Carroll Kuemper, which has been nothing short of amazing so far.
After defeating Carroll, 7-6, the Knights have racked up 44-0 and 84-0 victories over Denison-Schleswig and Clarinda Academy.
Kuemper scored 75 points in the first half, and benched the starters midway through the second. Cole Neary was 10-for-10 passing for 200 yards and five touchdowns.
Neary is 34 of 51 on the year with 522 yards passing and seven scores. Chase Rupiper leads the rushing attack with 258 yards and five touchdowns, while Alex Drees has caught eight passes for 199 yards and four scores.
While this is a non-district affair, the prospects of defeating No. 1 on the road could do wonders for momentum heading back into district play next week.
SCC quarterback Jake Petzenhauser will have to be the focal point for the attack, as the senior threw for 145 yards and two scores, while running for 40 and another TD, last Friday.
Tonight’s other games: Iowa Falls-Alden (1-2, 0-1) at No. 10 (3A) Webster City (3-0, 1-0); Estherville-LC (2-1, 1-0) at Clarion-Goldfield (1-2, 0-1); Manson Northwest Webster (2-1, 0-1) at IKM-Manning (2-1, 0-0); East Sac County (2-1, 0-1) at Forest City (1-2, 0-1); Emmetsburg (1-2, 1-0) at Okoboji (0-3, 0-1); Hull Western Christian (1-2, 0-0) at North Union (0-3, 0-1); No. 4 (1A) Dike New-Hartford (3-0, 1-0) at Eagle Grove (0-3, 0-1); Prairie Valley (0-3, 0-1) at Southeast Webster-Grand (1-2, 0-1); Corwith-CWL (2-2, 1-0) at Laurens-Marathon (1-2, 0-1); No. 3 (8-man) Newell-Fonda (3-0, 1-0) at Northeast Hamilton (2-1, 0-1); Graettinger-Terril (2-1, 1-0) at No. 5 (8-man) West Bend-Mallard (4-0, 1-0).