Week 2 of the high school football season is in the books and Week 3 is quickly approaching. Here’s a preview on each area team’s game this week:
Clinton (0-1) at Wahlert Catholic (1-1)
Preparing for his first road game as coach of the River Kings, Nate Herrig had to do something he’s never done before.
“For the first time in my life today, I made a seating chart for the bus,” Herrig said. “State rules say we’ve got to have a seating chart so the kids sit in the same seat on the way up as they do on the way back, so that’s a bit different trying to get all that stuff lined up.”
Despite that, Clinton is staying focused on what it can do to improve after a 55-6 loss to West Delaware in Week 2.
“The biggest thing for us was showing these guys the tape on Monday — showing them how close we were against a very good ball club,” Herrig said. “We were in the right spots, we got lined up correctly, we just didn’t make the plays. Our scout team can’t emulate the speed of West Delaware, so we saw live bullets last Friday.
“Hopefully we’re ready to see more live bullets this Friday.”
Herrig said a positive from Friday was his team only had two plays that went for negative yardage. He said they’ll need all the positive yardage they can get this week against Wahlert Catholic. Wahlert fell to West Delaware 35-0 in its first game but rebounded with a 51-18 win over Waterloo East last week.
“They run a tricky offense,” Herrig said. “They’ll line it up, run a little bit of Wing-T and they’ll spread you out and try to throw it around a little bit, so we’ve been practicing all sorts of different things. Defensively, they blitz a lot of guys, they run a 3-4, they walk two guys up all the time so it looks like they’re bringing five.
“They bring a lot of pressure, so we’ve got to make sure we sort through all that, stay on our tracks and hopefully make some big runs.”
Wahlert Catholic is led by Bryce Rudiger (three passing touchdowns), Ryan Brosius (116 yards rushing, one TD) and Gabe Anstoetter (16 tackles) on defense.
Tipton (1-1) at Camanche (1-1)
After a loss in Week 1, Camanche stormed back in Week 2 with a blowout win over Independence.
“I thought we played really well Friday night,” Indians coach Dustin Coit said. “Offensively, we changed our gameplan up from Week 1 and we executed it really well. Our kids did a nice job making plays all night. Defensively, they came in with a really good running back and I thought we did a nice job bottling him up for most of the night.”
Tipton opened the year with a 17-8 loss to West Branch but came back with a 47-28 win over Mount Pleasant last week. While the team struggles to pass the ball, Payten Elijah (377 rushing yards, three TDs) and Levi Daniel (204 yards, four TDs) are a load on the ground. Lake Anderson has three sacks on defense.
“We know that they’re very big upfront, physical, strong — they run a different kind of offense with a spinner back and a bunch of guys going different directions, but we’re really going to have to focus on their run, stopping that, doing our jobs and making plays,” Coit said.
Cade Everson was one of the highlights for Camanche last week, totaling 226 yards on 16 carries with three TDs. Coit said the Indians are lucky to have him.
“He can do just about anything for us offensively,” Coit said. “He gets most of the carries at running back, but we also can split him out and put him in the slot. He’s got good hands, good speed and we can use him in our quick bubble screens as well.
“It’s nice to have a kid like that who can do two different things for us.”
Northeast (1-1) at Beckman Catholic (0-1)
Northeast coach Mark Lee noticed a change in his team during this week’s practice.
“Our kids have some confidence this week — we can definitely tell the difference in practice,” Lee said. “A win always helps that.”
After falling in Week 1, Northeast came up with a 20-14 win over North Cedar and will hope to keep it rolling against Beckman, who fell to Anamosa last week, 42-28.
“They’re very big upfront on their offensive line and their skill players as well — their receivers are very quick and they like to spread you out and use that to their advantage as well, so we’re definitely going to have our work cut out for us, but nothing we can’t handle,” Lee said.
Beckman is led by quarterback Nick Offerman — not the Parks and Rec one — at quarterback (202 passing yards, three TDs) and receiver Trent Koelker (six catches, 114 yards, two TDs, one interception on defense). The team only has six yards on 21 carries running the ball this season.
Northeast, on the other hand, had two 100-yard rushers last week in Caleb Gruhn and Kael Parson, who will be looked upon again this week.
“We’ve preached to our offensive linemen for us to be successful, it has to be on them to get the job done upfront,” Lee said. “We’re fairly young there, so they’re getting a taste for the speed of the game as well, but we’ve got some good guys.”
Easton Valley (2-0) at Kee (2-0) — 8-man football
Coming off an 85-point performance at home in Week 2, Easton Valley coach Tony Johnson said his team is ready to hit the road again.
“We’re feeling good,” Johnson said. “We’re healthy, which is a good thing and we’re just looking to get better every week and going on another long road trip is always tough, but we’re looking forward to the challenge.”
Kolton Murphy led the way for EV last week, carrying the rock nine times for 192 yards and five TDs. Johnson is looking forward to another big game for Murphy this week.
“He struggled a little bit in Week 1 and he really took it upon himself,” Johnson said. “He was upset with himself. He got nine carries and made the most of it — he almost had 200 yards. He ran with a purpose last Friday and that’s the Kolton we know and I think we’re going to see from here on out.”
Kee is led by Damon Weber (200 passing yards, three TDs) at quarterback and features four different running back with at least 89 rushing yards and two rushing TDs. Weber also leads the team in tackles (19). The team has wins over Central Elkader (54-14) and West Central (55-14).
“Kee’s big,” Johnson said. “They’ve got a quarterback who’s a third-year starter, so he’s a very good athlete. They’re going to look to run the ball, occasionally sprinkle in a little pass, but they want to be physical with us so we like that and we’re just going to take it to them.”
North Scott (1-1) at Central DeWitt (2-0)
After a blowout win in Week 2, Central DeWitt coach Ryan Streets just wants to keep building.
“We had a couple guys go down early before the season started, but these last two weeks we’ve come out healthy, which is important,” Streets said. “I think we really improved from Week 1 to Week 2, which is good. We started getting some guys feet wet that previously hadn’t had a lot of varsity experience.
“We’re just going to keep trying to build off that as we move forward.”
In the Sabers’ 34-7 win over Davenport West, quarterback Henry Bloom exploded for 221 offensive yards and five TDs after his coaches challenged him in practice.
“We challenged him a little bit,” Streets said. “The first game, he didn’t pull the ball much and was really telegraphing his reads, he was just giving it to the dive guy all the time. We said, ‘Hey listen: you’ve got to let the guy down and make a read.’ So, he started pulling the ball this week and he had three rushing touchdowns because of it.”
North Scott opened the season with a 26-0 win over Muscatine but fell to Pleasant Valley 24-10 last week. Carter Markham leads the offense (135 passing yards, one TD) and the team has no runners over 100 yards yet on the season.
“They run a lot of everything,” Streets said. “They’ll run outside stuff if it’s working, they’ll run inside stuff if it’s working, a lot of QB run game, a lot of bubble screens, quick-hitting wide receiver tunnel screens.
“Their goal is to run the football and they’re going to adjust to whatever you throw at them.”