District Preview: Class 3A District 7

CLASS 3A-DISTRICT 7 PREVIEW

GALENA (6-0)

After a run to the Class 3A regional round a year ago, defending district champion Galena has been perfect to date in 2017 as it takes a 6-0 mark into Friday’s home game with Cherryvale. The Bulldogs have won nine straight regular-season games dating back to last season, including last week’s thrilling 33-29 victory over Class 4A-Division II No. 1 Columbus. That win gave the Bulldogs the upperhand in the chase for the CNC League championship. Galena has been especially tough on the defensive side of the ball this season, holding four of its six opponents to single digits in scoring, including an impressive 16-0 shutout win over Pittsburg-Colgan in week one. Under the direction of coach Beau Sarwinski, the Bulldogs are seeking a seventh straight trip to the playoffs. Following its district opener with Cherryvale, Galena will close out the regular season with games against winless Southeast-Cherokee and Riverton.

CHERRYVALE (5-1)

Since a week-two loss at Humboldt, Cherryvale has won its last four games and takes a 5-1 mark into Friday’s district opener at Galena. The Chargers are coming off a 22-16 home win over Montgomery County rival Caney Valley last Friday — a victory that could go a long way towards a possible share of the Tri-Valley League championship for the Chargers. In its win over Caney Valley, CHS won despite being outgained 362-206 in total yardage by the Bullpups. That is a credit to Cherryvale’s defense, which forced three turnovers and held the ‘Pups away from the goal line on three red-zone opportunities in the first half. Cherryvale has already clinched a fifth straight winning season and is seeking its 11th postseason appearance in school history, including a fifth trip to the playoffs under coach Harry Hester. Friday’s contest in Galena will be the Chargers’ final road game of the regular season as they finish the season with home games against Riverton and Southeast.

SOUTHEAST-CHEROKEE (0-4)

Due to a weird quirk in its schedule, Southeast-Cherokee has played only four games during the first six weeks of the regular season. The Lancers were unable to find opponents in week two and week five as they make a transition into the Three Rivers League. It’s been a rough going this season for Southeast as it has dropped all four of its games to date, including a 53-0 loss at Girard last week. That was the second straight shutout for the Lancers, who have been outscored 186-24 in their first four outings. Southeast — which opens district play Friday at 0-6 Riverton — is trying to avoid a third straight winless season as it has dropped 25 consecutive games overall. The Lancers’ last victory was a 27-20 decision at Northeast-Arma on Oct. 10, 2014.

RIVERTON (0-6)

It has been a rough season so far for Riverton as it wipes the slate clean with the start of district play. The Rams are 0-6 overall following last week’s 49-6 home loss to Pittsburg-Colgan. Riverton has struggled to put points on the scoreboard all season long as it has been outscored 300-18 through the first six weeks of play. In fact, the Rams have been shut out four times already, including three in a row against Columbus, Girard and Coffeyville-Field Kindley to open the season. Despite recording just two wins last season, the Rams did come out of District 7 as the runner-up, losing in the 3A bi-district playoffs to Caney Valley. Riverton, which opens district play at home with Southeast-Cherokee, has an eight-game overall losing streak dating back to last season.

Prediction

Champion: Galena

Runner-up: Cherryvale