No. 2 Van Meter (10-0)
at No. 6 Denver (9-1)
Time: Friday, 7 p.m.
Postseason history: Van Meter is in the field for the 16th time overall and the 10th year in a row. Denver has qualified 14 times and has reached five of the last six tournaments.
Opening statements: Van Meter topped Belmond-Klemme 24-6 in its state opener, while Denver handled No. 10 South Hamilton 28-6.
Quick slants: The Bulldog offense relies heavily on explosive running back Carson Rhodes who is averaging 8.8 yards per carry. The senior has rushed for 1,745 yards, 20 touchdowns and is coming off an enormous showing in the postseason opener, rushing for 247 yards and finding the end zone three times. Quarterback Blake Fryar has thrown for 1,260 yards and showed how dangerous he can be on the ground against Belmond-Klemme, gaining 85 yards on nine carries. After allowing 20 points in the season opener, the Bulldog defense has surrendered just 29 in the nine games since, pitching five shutouts in the process. Chris Reames (nine sacks) and Connor Guess (eight) lead a dominant pass rush. ... A shift from a power attack to a speed one hasn't lessened the Cyclones' standing as one of the class' top rushing teams, as Sam Joerger and Bo McMahon have combined for 2,370 yards and 32 touchdowns. Quarterback Joerger had a great game against South Hamilton last Friday, accounting for 304 yards and three touchdowns on offense, while also returning an interception 93 yards for a score. ... Each team beat the other's first postseason opponent during the regular season. Denver beat Belmond-Klemme 14-13 on Sept. 22, while Van Meter topped South Hamilton 42-0 Sept. 15.