It’s getting down to crunch time / make-or-break / in-or-out whatever cliche you prefer to use down the stretch of the football season.
I did it again. Didn’t I? Ugh. Cliches.
Here are the games of importance for SEK-Sports.com coverage area teams for Week 7. Perhaps it’s a battle for a district title, maybe it’s keeping playoff hopes alive, whatever the case may be, these are the games we’re watching closely this Friday night.
Coffeyville @ Chanute
Chanute is 5-1 for the first time since 2009, 10 years to be exact. Led by quarterback Ty Bowman and Briley Peavy, the Comet offense is clicking. The Blue Comets are averaging 34.5 points per game offensively. With a win, Chanute will be tied with Labette County, who is making the long haul to Ulysses, at 3-0 in the SEK League ahead of the Week 8 regular-season finale with the title on the line.
CLASS 3A DISTRICT 1
Galena @ Columbus
Is there a more “magical”, “feel good” story than the Columbus Titans this year? I’ll wait. Ok. Times up. For Columbus they’ll be tested by traditional powerhouse Galena. Perhaps the unsung star of Columbus’ season is their defense. They are giving up just 13.5 points per game against the likes of Colgan, Caney Valley, Coffeyville and Parsons. Galena’s offense is averaging 36.5 points per game. Columbus also boasts one of the best arms in the state in Patrick Cassidy, who’s amassed 800 yards passing through 6 weeks. This will be a good measuring stick for both teams with the playoffs looming. Should Columbus come away with the win, no doubt will next week’s game against Frontenac be a “must watch” not just for eastern Kansas, but the entire state.
CLASS 3A DISTRICT 2
Anderson County @ Prairie View
With a win tonight, Prairie View captures the Pioneer League title outright, clinches the district title, and moves to 7-0. No pressure. Except they host a talented, loaded offense in Anderson County. The Bulldogs have the one-man wrecking crew in Bo Dilliner, who is a junior. Dilliner has 664 yards passing with 9 touchdowns thrown. On the ground he’s leading the team with 947 yards rushing and 12 touchdowns. The Bulldogs offense is averaging 34 points per game. In the games in which they’ve won, Anderson county has scored over 30 points, but in the games they’ve lost they have been held to 26 or fewer. For Prairie View, senior Justin Scott has been a highlight reel going 21-of-42 with 490 yards passing with 8 touchdowns thrown. He’s backed up by Hunter Boone who’s rushed for 706 yards this season with 10 touchdowns. If for no other reason, this game should be fun to attend and watch with 2 high powered offenses with plenty of talent on both sides.
CLASS 3A DISTRICT 3
Bishop Ward @ Santa Fe Trail / Jefferson West @ Wellsville
Santa Fe Trail and Wellsville are both 1-2 in the district. If the season ended, Wellsville would be in and Santa Fe Trail would be out. Bishop Ward is 0-3 in the district going into their match up with Santa Fe Trail. Jefferson West is 2-1 and fighting for a potential home playoff game. There is still plenty to compete for this Friday night. Santa Fe Trail will bring in one of the state’s top rushers with 830 yards.
CLASS 2A DISTRICT 1
Southeast @ Riverton
Southeast-Cherokee is putting together the best season in the school’s history. They are undefeated. They are the Three Rivers League 11-Man Champions. They have Riverton to contend with this week. Riverton’s season could be described as one of that like a pendulum. They’ve had blowout losses (58-8 to Galena, 52-35 to Lighthouse Christian) and they’ve had blowout wins (50-12 over Erie, 48-18 over Northeast). Last week Riverton came close to pulling off the upset over Humboldt. Southeast couldn’t have scheduled a better tune-up game for a possible showdown for the district title in a game with a competitive Riverton team with something to prove.
CLASS 2A DISTRICT 5
Belle Plaine @ Eureka
Hey, remember when I picked Belle Plaine to finish last and Eureka to be on the road for the playoffs? Great times. I’ll admit my mistake and admit when I’m wrong. Not only did I get it wrong, I completely whiffed. Belle Plaine has remained hot. Eureka has taken full advantage of playing at home. In fact, the Tornadoes are 3-0 at their new facility and have posted an impressive 40.6 points per game on offense while their opponents have averaged just 5 points per game in the 3 contests including last weeks shut out over Neodesha. I’m not going to make a prediction on this one, but I will say it should be a fun one!
CLASS 8M-I DISTRICT 1
Oswego @ Cedar Vale/Dexter
This match-up could single-handedly shake up the entire 8M-I District 1 landscape. On one hand, a win by Cedar Vale/Dexter locks down the district championship and Oswego is still on the outside looking in for a playoff spot. However, a win by Oswego and they’re right back in the thick of things for a playoff spot, and Cedar Vale/Dexter is tied with either Sedan or Central-Burden (who are facing off against one another tonight). Oswego also brings in Jace Wilson who has 845 yards on the ground. Wilson will be a challenge for Cedar Vale/Dexter to contend with, but if they stop him, that will no doubt help their chances. Oswego not only has the chance to play spoiler, but also the chance to make week 8 VERY interesting.
CLASS 8M-I DISTRICT 3
Burlingame @ Madison
Madison is undefeated entering into this week with a chance to clinch the Lyon County League title and wrap up the district title. Burlingame is beaten up and will not suit up any seniors due to injuries for this match-up, but still with a league match-up like this, anything can happen.