MARION - As the prep volleyball season nears the midway point, Cedar Rapids Xavier identified a vital ingredient if the Saints are to retain their No. 1 ranking in Class 4A.
Now is the time to turn up the defense.
The top-ranked Saints s ... »
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Area football capsules for Week 3:
Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Trojan Field
Records and rankings — Both teams are 2-0. West is ranked fifth in Class 4A; Cedar Falls is No. 9.
Overview — The Trojans have been one of the state’s pleasant surprises. Credit an attack that has scored 73 points in two games. Oliver Martin ranks third among 11-player receivers with 16 catches, and second in receiving yards with 267 yards. The sledding gets tougher against the Tigers, who have shined defensively, allowing 6.5 points per game (third best in 4A). Cedar Falls’ Hayden Clausen has rushed for 219 yards.
Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Bettendorf
Records and rankings — Washington (2-0) is ranked No. 3 in Class 4A; Bettendorf (1-1) is No. 8.
Overview — Washington’s defense was dominant against Cedar Rapids Kennedy last week, keeping the Cougars out of the end zone. This could be a low-scoring affair, because Bettendorf is traditionally a stingy outfit as well. The Bulldogs bounced back from a shellacking at the hands of No. 1 West Des Moines Valley, hammering Davenport Assumption, 55-0, in Week 2. Washington’s O’Rien Vance, the 2015 Gazette area defensive player of the year, has 13 tackles to his credit.
Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Bates Field
Records and rankings — City High is 2-0 and ranked No. 6; Ames is 1-1.
Overview — The Battle for the Boot is a week away, but like Iowa City West, City High has enough on its plate this week to avoid distraction. The Little Hawks are coming off a thrilling 19-17 win over Pleasant Valley behind two touchdowns from Bryce Frantz and a pair of crucial field goals by Miles Morrow. Ames dropped a 35-7 decision to Cedar Falls last week, but sports a traditionally strong program. Joe Evans has completed 62.5 percent of his passes for 293 yards and two TDs.
Time and site — 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Van Horne
Records and rankings — Second-ranked Xavier is 2-0 overall, 0-0 in Class 3A District 3; Benton is 1-1, 0-0.
Overview — Xavier was teetering for a while last week, facing a 17-14 fourth-quarter deficit at Linn-Mar. But Maliki Wilson got loose for three long touchdowns late, finished with 266 yards and the Saints ran away, 45-17. Wilson leads the state in rushing with 554 yards (on 41 carries) with six touchdowns. Benton followed a big Week 1 win with a 45-22 loss Friday at Marion. Riley Pfiffner has 15 receptions for 179 yards.
Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Clinton
Records and rankings — Prairie is 1-1; Clinton is 2-0.
Overview — Both of these teams are moving in the right direction. The Hawks followed a competitive loss to Cedar Rapids Washington with a 38-14 rout of Cedar Rapids Jefferson, scoring the final 26 points. Joseph Meyer and Zachary Ganske have been dual workhorses on the ground, combining for 419 yards. Clinton has been an offensive locomotive, piling up 51 points in each of the first two weeks (against Davenport West and North Scott). Johnny Sullivan has passed for 552 yards, with Gage Harris (19 receptions, 298 yards) the top target.
Time and site — 7 p.m. Friday, at Wapello
Records and rankings — Top-ranked Regina is 1-1 overall, 0-0 in Class 1A District 4. Wapello is 2-0, 0-0.
Overview — The district season begins for Regina, which probably means a string of one-sided victories. The Regals split their non-district affairs against 3A competition, notching an impressive 34-0 triumph over Solon last week. Wapello quarterback Logan Belzer has been efficient thus far, completing 71 percent of his passes for 321 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions.
Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Thomas Park Field
Records and rankings — Both teams are 1-1 overall, 0-0 in Class 3A District 4.
Overview — Marion’s 18-game losing streak is now just a bitter memory. The Indians stepped out of the darkness in just the second game of Tim Lovell’s career, beating Benton Community, 45-22, as Owen Cartensen and Chris Mohwinkle rushed for two touchdowns apiece (Mohwinkle also returned a kickoff 88 yards for a score). Now the Indians try to put a win streak together, and the schedule is favorable if they can get past the Sabers on Friday. Central suffered a 28-13 loss to Cascade last week.
Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Dubuque (Dalzell Field)
Records and rankings — Kennedy is 0-2; Hempstead is 1-1.
Overview — Where does the season go from here for Kennedy? Last year’s 4A state runner-up, the Cougars have dropped a heartbreaker to Muscatine, then were manhandled, 21-0, last week by Cedar Rapids Washington. If they can win Friday in Dubuque, they can build some momentum as the district season approaches. But they have to fix an offense that hasn’t visited the end zone in six quarters. Hempstead lost a toughie to Waterloo West last week, 14-13.
Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Kingston Stadium
Records and rankings — Both teams are 0-2.
Overview — An 0-3 start is less than appealing for either of these teams, both of which entered the season with a measure of optimism. Jefferson held a 14-12 lead on Cedar Rapids Prairie last week before the Hawks scored the final 26 points. Linn-Mar, on the other hand, held a 17-14 lead in the fourth quarter, then the Saints scored 31 points in the final 8:55. Linn-Mar’s Neme Siaway has rushed for 241 yards; Joshua Furrow has posted 28 tackles for the J-Hawks.
Time and site — 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Cascade
Records and rankings — Both teams are 2-0 overall, 0-0 in Class 2A District 4. NFV is ranked No. 1; Cascade is No. 6.
Overview — This district is shaping up as a beast, with five teams in the top 10 this week, plus another that is undefeated. Cascade has shifted to a run-oriented attack, and it has harvested 75 points in the first two games. Austin Lieurance has rushed for 315 yards and four touchdowns. The Cougars will be tested defensively by a North Fayette defense that has yielded just 10 points in two games against 3A competition. NFV’s Tanner Kuhens and Trey Kuhens have combined for 383 ground yards.
Time and site — 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Monticello
Records and rankings — Both teams are 2-0 overall, 0-0 in Class 2A District 4. Union is ranked second.
Overview — Union is one of four teams in Iowa that have not yet allowed a point. The Knights opened with a 35-0 win over Marion, then followed with a 50-0 decision against Vinton-Shellsburg. Isaiah Vaughn leads Union’s attack with 346 rushing yards and seven touchdowns. This is the first game of a four-week gauntlet for Monticello, with North Fayette Valley, Cascade and Waukon awaiting. Jacob Manternach has passed for 404 yards and five touchdowns.
Time and site — 7 p.m. Friday, at Springville
Records and rankings — Both teams are 3-0 overall, 0-0 in 8-Player District 4. Lone Tree is ranked No. 5.
Overview — Lone Tree has enjoyed a smooth-as-porcelain transition to the 8-player game, destroying its first three opponents to the tune of 184-30. But none of those foes are at the caliber of Springville. Drake Hotz has rushed for 310 yards and seven TDs for the Lions, while Jovonte Squiers has nine TDs — four receiving, three rushing, two on interception returns. Springville’s scoring margin is 163-55 through three games. Cavanaugh Riley has passed for 286 yards and run for 150, and James Fitzgerald has four takeaways.
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