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Prep football playoff capsules
PREP PLAYOFF PREVIEW CAPSULES

Prep football playoff capsules

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Class 4A

No. 8 Wat. West (8-1) at

No. 6 C.R. Prairie (8-1)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: West is making its eighth trip to the playoffs, first since 2013. Prairie is making its fifth consecutive playoff appearance, 19th overall. The Hawks won the 1981 state title.

Quick slants: This game figures to be one of the better first-round match-ups. No. 4 Cedar Rapids Washington handed each team its lone loss, defeating Prairie 27-14 in Week 1 and West 35-21 in Week 9. ... Iowa State recruit Devon Moore is up to 1,989 yards passing with 26 touchdowns versus just five interceptions for West. Carlton Todd (40 catches, 675 yards, 10 touchdowns) and Tayshaun Cooper (30 catches, 622 yards, 8 TDs) remain his top targets. Running back Harrison Eighmey has rushed for 730 yards and nine scores at an average of 6 yards per carry. Sam Gerst leads West’s defense with 75 tackles — 10 for loss. ... Prairie hasn’t been held under 38 points since its opening week loss to Washington. The Hawks’ powerful rushing attack is led by the tandem of seniors Joseph Meyer (1,220 yards, 23 touchdowns) and Zachary Ganske (933 yards, 11 touchdowns). Quarterback Dakota Simonsen has completed just 33 passes but is averaging 21.6 yards per completion with six TDs versus four interceptions. Preson LaGrange’s five interceptions lead Prairie’s defense.

— Compiled by Sports Writer Nick Petaros

Class 3A

Waverly-Shell Rock (6-3)

at No. 9 W. Delaware (8-1)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: Waverly-Shell Rock is making its seventh consecutive playoff appearance, 21st overall. The Go-Hawks won state titles in 1990 and 1992. West Delaware is making a ninth trip to the playoffs, 22nd overall. The Hawks won the state championship in between W-SR’s title years in 1991.

Quick slants: West Delaware beat Waverly-Shell Rock, 47-25, in Week 3 last season. W-SR overcame district losses to Benton and No. 2 Xavier to secure the first wild card playoff berth in 3A. John Stensland has thrown for 1,002 yards and 12 touchdowns, while Gabriel Santoiemma has 848 rushing yards and 10 scores. ... Coming off a state semifinal finish last season, Clear Creek-Amana has handed West Delaware its lone loss. The Hawks also have balance on offense with quarterback Tanner Wessels passing for 1,536 yards and 19 touchdowns. Running back Caleb Kehrli has rushed for 1,132 yards and 15 scores, while Wessels has 813 rushing yards from his QB position.

— Compiled by Sports Writer Nick Petaros

Class 2A

Southeast Valley (6-3) at

No. 8 Dike-N.H. (7-2)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: This is SE Valley’s seventh appearance. The first five were when the school was called Prairie Valley. D-NH is in for the 16th time. Dike won the 1A title in 1981, while the Wolverines have been second four times since 1998.

Quick slants: Nolan Brand has passed for 1,713 yards and 21 scores for SE Valley. ... Dike-New Hartford’s Trent Johnson is 401 yards short of tying North Mahaska’s Levi Ferguson as the all-time leading rusher in the state of Iowa. Johnson enters the game with 6,741 career rushing yards.

No. 3 Union (8-1) at

No. 10 Crestwood (7-2)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: Union is in for the 10th time and the Knights won the 2011 3A state title. Crestwood is making its ninth appearance, first since 2013.

Quick slants: Isaiah Vaughan leads Union with 1,228 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns. Troy Hanus has completed 70 percent of his passes for 1,450 yards and 14 scores. ... Spencer Cuvelier leads the Cadets with 1,324 rushing yards and 17 TDs.

No. 7 New Hampton (8-1) at No. 1 N. Fayette Vall. (9-0)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: Both New Hampton and North Fayette Valley are making their 19th playoff appearances. New Hampton won the Class 3A title in 1999. NFV won state championships in 1992 and 2014.

Quick slants: New Hampton’s Carter Stochl has passed for 1,309 yards and 11 scores, while Keaton Geerts has rushed for 980 yards and 12 TDs. ... Tanner Kuhens leads the TigerHawks with 902 rushing yards and 10 scores. Four other runners have 25 or more carries for NFV.

— Compiled by Sports Writer Jim Nelson

Class 1A

Clayton Ridge (7-2) at

No. 3 Denver (9-0)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: Clayton Ridge is in for the seventh time and first since 2013. Denver is in for the 13th time. The Cyclones were state runners-up a year ago and won the Class 1A title in 1995.

Quick slants: Clayton Ridge’s Jace Moore is one of the state’s leaders with 27 touchdown passes. He has thrown for 1,904 yards. ... Denver has three running backs with 740 or more rushing yards — Bo McMahon (812), Sam Joerger (769) and Eli Barrett (741).

South Winneshiek (7-2)

at No. 7 Bellevue (9-0)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: Bellevue is in the playoffs for the eighth time, but the Comets have never won a playoff game. South Winn is in for the 10th time, sixth consecutive.

Quick slants: The Warriors have won six straight since losing their district opener to Denver. Rodney Schwartzhoff has rushed for 1,929 yards and 22 touchdowns. ... Bellevue has a great 1-2 punch in quarterback Cade Daugherty (1,680 yards, 19 touchdowns) and running back Peter Killburg (1,943 rushing yards, 27 TDs).

— Compiled by Sports Writer Jim Nelson

Class A

Hudson (8-1) at

No. 5 W. Hancock (7-2)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: Hudson is making its 16th appearance and eighth in a row with state titles in 1975 (2A) and 1994 (1A). The Pirates lost to eventual champion Iowa City Regina in last year’s 1A playoffs. ... West Hancock will be making its 27th overall appearance (the first six as Britt) and won titles in 1973 (2A) and 1996 (1A). The Eagles bowed out in the first round a year ago to Grundy Center.

Quick slants: Hudson won its first five games by a combined score of 142-14 with three shutouts. The Pirates’ only loss came at the hands of No. 1 Gladbrook-Reinbeck (43-5). Jacob Murray has passed for 811 yards and seven TDs, Chase Schares leads a deep group of running backs with 607 yards and eight scores (7.0 yards per carry), and Alec Staebell is the top receiver (20 catches, 375 yards, 3 TDs). Nathan Graves has been a force on defense with 65 total tackles, 20 tackles for loss and 13.5 sacks. Al Hageman has seven of Hudson’s 15 interceptions and the Pirates have also recovered seven fumbles. Wes Geisler is 6-for-8 on field goals. ... West Hancock is a power running team with a legendary coach in Bob Sanger. The Eagles lost to Garner-Hayfield/Ventura in their opener and to top-ranked St. Ansgar in a hard-fought 28-20 battle. Quarterback Dylan Eckels has thrown just 46 passes all season. Jordan Weiland (1,161 yards, 18 TDs, 11.4 yards per carry) and Colton Francis (903 yards, 15 TDs) lead the ground game. Defensively, the Eagles have 17 takeaways and on special teams they have returned two kickoffs for TDs.

Wapsie Valley (6-3) at

No. 1 St. Ansgar (9-0)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: It’s the 28th appearance for Wapsie Valley, which won titles in 1986 (2A), 1987 (2A), 1997 (1A), 2007 (A) and 2012 (A). The Warriors saw a streak of nine straight postseasons end a year ago. ... St. Ansgar qualified for the 17th time and 11th season in a row. The Saints were the 2011 1A champs. They lost to Dike-New Hartford in last year’s 1A quarterfinals.

Quick slants: Wapsie Valley’s defeats came to playoff qualifiers South Winneshiek (16-0), Denver (16-7) and Lisbon (21-9). The Warriors are ground-oriented with Jake Kuhlman rushing for 1,031 yards and 14 TDs and Colin Schrader adding 820 and 12 scores. Both average 6.3 yards per carry. When Wapsie Valley does throw, Taylan Sauerbrei’s top target has been Jaden Kuethe (11-148, 4 TDs). Defensively, Schrader has six of his team’s 11 interceptions and Ben Weepie has three fumble recoveries. ... St. Ansgar’s offense has been tough to stop this season. The Saints average 47.9 points and 424.5 yards per game. Of that yardage, 331 per game comes from the rushing attack featuring Parker Hendrickson (1,023 yards, 14 TDs, 8.8 yards per carry), Dayton Smith (925 yards, 16 TDs, 7.0 per carry) and John Patterson (409 yards, 5 TDs, 6.9 per carry). St. Ansgar has also been efficient and productive in the passing game where Ben Boerjan has completed 49.4 percent of his 85 passes for 785 yards and 12 TDs with just three interceptions. Ryan Petersen is the top target with 22 catches for 429 yards. Defensively, the Saints have 15 takeaways, and they’ve returned a kickoff and a punt for touchdowns.

No. 6 Lisbon (8-1) at

No. 9 E. Buchanan (7-2)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: Lisbon is making its 17th appearance, 13th in a row, and won a Class A title in 2011. The Lions were knocked out by BGM in the second round last season. ... East Buchanan is also in for the 17th time and is looking for its first trip to the finals. The Buccaneers fell to eventual champion Gladbrook-Reinbeck in the first round a year ago.

Quick slants: This is a rematch from mid-season when East Buchanan handed Lisbon its only loss, 44-20. The Lions, who own a 21-9 win over playoff qualifier Wapsie Valley, feature a dangerous passing game where Jake Jennett has hit 56 percent of 133 throws for 1,377 yards and 14 TDs with seven interceptions. Blake Langhurst leads the receivers with 25 catches for 582 yards and nine scores. On the ground, Jake Butteris (497 yards), Austin Krob (470) and Jennett (392) all average at least 6.6 yards per carry. Lisbon has returned a punt and a kickoff for TDs. ... East Buchanan’s losses came to Jesup in the opener (14-6) and to Wapsie Valley (23-7). The Bucs finished the season with five straight victories during which they averaged 50.2 points and outscored their foes, 251-41 with a pair of shutouts. Offensively, it’s largely about the rushing attack where Carter Downer has piled up 1,391 yards and 21 TDs with a per -carry average of 8.3 yards. Tyler Williams has 838 yards and eight TDs with a 7.1 average per carry. Defensively, East Buchanan has 11 interceptions (five by Jake Ohl and four by Max McGraw) and 11 fumble recoveries (three by Tyler Williams).

No. 10 Lynnville-Sully (8-1) at No. 2 Glad.-Rein. (9-0)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: Lynnville-Sully is in for the 12th time and won the 1986 1A state title. Mount Ayr eliminated the Hawks in last year’s quarterfinals. ... Gladbrook-Reinbeck has qualified for the 11th time since consolidation and is the defending Class A state champion.

Quick slants: Lynnville-Sully’s only defeat came in its regular-season finale to Montezuma. The Hawks shut out three opponents and held another to one score. They feature a balanced offensive attack. Elijah Collins has completed 55 percent of 101 passes for 779 yards and 13 TDs with just three interceptions while Tyler Van Zante has hit 64 percent of 42 attempts for 380 yards and two more scores, but has been picked off six times. On the ground, Sage Zylstra (705 yards, 8 TDs, 6.1 per carry) an Evan Squires (413 yards, 7 TDs, 4.3 per carry) are the leaders. Brevin Hansen tops the receiving corps with 33 grabs for 444 yards and six scores, while Caden Dunsbergen has 22 catches for 360 yards and six TDs. Defensively, Ryan Hofer, Zylstra and Kemper Lukehart all have double-digit tackles for loss. ... Gladbrook-Reinbeck opened the season with narrow wins over Grundy Center (7-6) and Dike-New Hartford (17-14), then dominated its last seven foes 338-32. Quarterback Hunter Lott has hit on 63 percent of 82 passes for 1,168 yards and 14 TDs with only two interceptions. Gage Murty, Walker Thede, Matt Roeding and Erik Knaack all have double-digit receptions and more than 200 receiving yards. Parker Bown is the leading rusher with 478 yards and 10 scores. Defensively, the Rebels have helped out the offense with 15 interceptions and 16 fumble recoveries, and their special teams have been outstanding with Thede returning four punts and one kickoff for TDs and Knaack running back two more punts for scores.

— Compiled by Sports Editor Doug Newhoff

8-Player

No. 4 Don Bosco (8-1) at

No. 1 Turkey Valley (9-0)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: Don Bosco has qualified for the playoffs every year since joining the 8-player class and owns a state title (2013) and two runner-up finishes, including last season when the Dons lost to Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn in the finals. ... Turkey Valley is in for the 15th time and eight in a row. The Trojans lost to Don Bosco in last year’s second round.

Quick slants: Following a mid-season, 44-34 loss to Central Elkader, Don Bosco has averaged 74 points per game and recorded a pair of shutouts in the last four outings. Brandon Bagby ignites the attack and has 969 passing yards and 22 TDs while completing 61 percent of 87 attempts with no interceptions. He’s also the leading rusher with 1,104 yards and 19 TDs (7.3 yards per carry) while Austin Svoboda has 787 rushing yards and 14 scores with a per-carry average of 14.6 yards. Caleb Rigdon leads the receivers with 23 catches for 521 yards and nine TDs. Defensively, Walker Even and Svoboda are the leading tacklers with 52 and 45 solo stops, respectively, and both own double-digit tackles for loss. ... Turkey Valley rolled through the regular season with no game closer than 22 points. Cody Hackman has completed 28 of 40 passes for 770 yards with 19 of those completions going for TDs against just two interceptions. Wyatt Blazek owns 1,201 rushing yards and 16 TDs at 9.3 yards per carry, and Hackman has rushed for 610 yards and 14 scores while knocking out 7.9 yards per rush. Walker Liebold is the leading receiver with 11 catches for 328 yards and nine TDs. Defensively, Blazek has 77 total tackles and Hackman has six of the Trojans’ 14 interceptions. Turkey Valley has also recovered 11 fumbles.

AGWSR (7-2) at

No. 7 Cent. Elkader (7-2)

Time: Friday, 7 p.m.

Postseason history: AGWSR, in its first season of 8-player football, is in for the sixth time since consolidation (fourth in a row) and 11th overall. The Cougars fell to Algona Garrigan in the Class 1A first round a year ago. ... Central Elkader is making its eighth appearance and fourth straight. It lost to Don Bosco in last year’s quarterfinals.

Quick slants: AGWSR lost to Don Bosco and Turkey Valley in the middle of the season. Nathan Karsjens has passed for 501 yards and rushed for 859 and 16 TDs to lead the Cougars. Liam Stubbe has 780 rushing yards and averages 7.2 per carry, while Tate Hofmeister is the top receiver with 12 receptions for 193 yards and three TDs. Tyler Rose has 71 total tackles, and the Cougars have 21 takeaways on defense. ... Central Elkader’s losses came to Midland in the second game and to Turkey Valley (42-20). Derek Ehrhardt has completed 93 of 166 passes for 1,516 yards and 26 TDs with six interceptions and is the leading rusher with 954 yards and 17 TDs and a 6.3 yards per carry average. Zach Grant has added 444 rushing yards. Nick Sylvester tops the receivers with 43 catches for 746 yards and 11 TDs, and Ted Hilgerson and Josh Cummer have 23 and 17 receptions, respectively. Hilgerson is the leading tackler with 82.5 stops, while Drew Reinhart has 21 solo tackles for loss and 18 assisted TFLs with nine total sacks. He has also intercepted four passes.

— Compiled by Sports Editor Doug Newhoff

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