CLINTON — It would be easy for Clinton to stay in a party mood all week after its monumental football win last Friday at Bettendorf. But coach Lee Camp is pleased to report that it’s business as usual for the River Kings at practice this week.

“Obviously, we’re pretty upbeat, yet pretty focused,” Camp said Wednesday. “To pull off a win like that and then go flat would diminish the importance of that historic win.”

It probably also doesn’t hurt that Davenport Assumption is up next following Clinton’s first win over Bettendorf since 1991.

After all, the River Kings beat the Knights last year for the first time since 1988.

Assumption (3-1) would like nothing better after Friday night than to sit in a tie atop the Mississippi Athletic Conference standings with Clinton, the only undefeated team in the league.

“Assumption has a great tradition, and (coach) Wade King does a great job preparing his kids.”

The Knights are led by the senior trio of Ryan Byrne, Sean Finn and Joe Daniel on offense. It’s an offense similar to Burlington’s but with more misdirection, according to Camp.

If Assumption is effective on offense, it will accomplish something none of Clinton’s first four opponents did. Last week, Clinton allowed a season-high 243 yards to a Bettendorf team that was ranked fourth in the state, the spot the River Kings hold this week after six of last week’s top 10 teams in Class 4A lost last Friday.

“Looking at the stats, they play great defense,” King said of Clinton. “They’ve given up less than 150 yards on the ground, and that impresses me.”

Camp said: “The defense definitely has done a great job. It has created havoc and prevented a lot of long drives. The line does a great job of occupying the offensive linemen, and that creates great opportunities for the linebackers to fly to the ball.”

Byrne is one of the top running backs in the MAC, rushing for 434 yards on 64 carries and catching six passes for 94 yards.

“He’s a hard-nosed kid who complements that style of offense real well,” Camp said.

Finn has been effective running the offense from the quarterback spot. He has completed 30 of 49 passes for 395 yards. Daniel, a big target, has caught 14 passes for 186 yards.

“He manages the offense pretty well for us,” King said of Finn. “He makes good decisions.”

Clinton is averaging 360 yards a game on offense, and that’s a misleading number because it has pretty much shut down its offense early in three of four games.

David Johnson is coming off his best offensive game of the season, rushing for almost 200 yards and completing a pass for 48. He has rushed for 412 yards and caught seven passes for 178 yards.

Johnson is having a senior season reminiscent of the one Willie Argo had as an Assumption senior in 2007, when he was named the Class 4A Player of the Year in Iowa. Argo broke the MAC scoring record that year, a mark that Johnson is on pace to eclipse.

“The one thing that jumps out at me is how much he is scoring,” King said of Johnson. “That’s what we counted on with Willie.”

The River Kings will face a defense that Camp calls “opportunistic.” The Knights average better than two takeaways a game, and Tim Kilfoy leads the way with three interceptions.

King knows the defense will have its hands full Friday, or least he hopes the defenders’ hands are full.

“We have to play a full, consistent game, and we have to tackle,” King said. “Their ballcarriers can break tackles. (Quarterback Jake) Mangler is such a good athlete and can make things happen, and (running back David) Johnson is an incredible athlete. We can’t give up big plays. We’re going to have to make tackles when we get to the football.”

Johnson made one of the biggest plays last week when he broke off a 99-yard touchdown run against Bettendorf. It came after a defensive stand prevented Bettendorf from scoring a game-tying touchdown.

The play helped touch off a celebration that the River Kings hope to continue the rest of the season — without losing sight of the game at hand.

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