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No. 9 West Hancock (9-2)

vs. No. 1 Hudson (11-0)

  • When: Friday, 10 a.m.
  • Where: UNI-Dome, Cedar Falls
  • Head coaches: West Hancock, Bob Sanger. Hudson, Justin Brekke.
  • Postseason history: It's the 29th playoff appearance for West Hancock -- all since 1990 -- and fifth in a row. The Eagles won the 1A title in 1996 and were runners-up in 1993 and 2011. This is their eighth trip to the semifinals. ... Hudson is making its 18th appearance and also its eighth appearance in the semis. The Pirates were state champs in 1975 and '94 and runners-up in 1979, '80 and last season.
  • Road to the Dome: West Hancock dispatched Hinton 42-20 and Akron-Westfield 52-14. ... Hudson knocked out Lynnville-Sully 44-22 and Highland 41-14.
  • Quick slants: West Hancock leads the entire state in rushing yards (4,130), averages 7.2 yards per carry, has 48 TDs on the ground and averages 398.6 yards of total offense and 34.6 points. The Eagles run the ball 91.7 percent of the time. Tate Hagen has 1,734 yards and 24 TDs (fourth in Class A) and Josef Smith has 1,064 yards. Last week, Coel Kelly did most of the damage with 203 of West Hancock's 364 rushing yards in a game when the Eagles attempted just three passes. Caleb Eckels has 16 of the team's 23 total pass receptions and is dangerous in the return game, averaging 25.3 yards on kickoff runbacks and 23.7 on punt returns with one touchdown each way. Defensively, West Hancock has given up an average of 13.1 points per game... Hudson is averaging 36.5 points, 247.6 rushing yards and 335.3 total yards per game. Jacob Murray has passed for 959 yards and 12 TDs with four interceptions, and Christian Seres ranks third in Class A with 1,791 rushing yards and 28 TDs. Defensively, the Pirates have allowed an average of 12.5 points and they have 29 takeaways, including 18 fumble recoveries. Ethan Fulcher's 94.5 tackles lead the team and he has 14 tackles for loss and two sacks. Aiden Larson has 11 TFLs and four sacks and Jackson Lehr has 11 TFLs and 5.5 sacks.

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Sports Editor

Sports Editor for The Courier

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