Week 4 Eastern Iowa high school football preview capsules

Iowa City West is favored to reclaim the Boot

Linn-Mar football coach Paul James goes through a drill with linemen during football practice Aug. 8. James takes the Lions to Kingston Stadium for a Thursday game against Cedar Rapids Washington, his former team. (Stephen Mally/The Gazette)
Linn-Mar football coach Paul James goes through a drill with linemen during football practice Aug. 8. James takes the Lions to Kingston Stadium for a Thursday game against Cedar Rapids Washington, his former team. (Stephen Mally/The Gazette)

Area prep football capsules for Week 4:



Iowa City West at Iowa City High

Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Bates Field

Records and rankings — Class 4A second-ranked West is 3-0; City is 1-2.

Overview — After dropping a 20-7 decision at home last year, West is a heavy favorite to wrest The Boot from City High this year. The Trojans rallied from a 17-0 halftime deficit last week to edge Cedar Falls in overtime, 32-31, succeeding on a two-point conversion to win it. West’s Evan Flitz is one of the best quarterbacks in the state, ranking third in all classes in passing yards with 781. City High, meanwhile, has one of the state’s premier receivers in Zach Jones (29 catches, 428 yards, three touchdowns), who caught a school-record 16 passes (for 232 yards) last week in a loss at Ames.



Cedar Rapids Kennedy at Cedar Rapids Jefferson

Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Kingston Stadium (Jefferson is the home team, and its fans will sit on the west side)

Records and rankings — Kennedy is 2-1; Jefferson is 1-2.

Overview — Jefferson picked up its first win of the season last week, holding off Linn-Mar, 27-20, behind four touchdown passes by Noah Vawter — two each to Kyler Bell and Trenton Kuennen. Kennedy has a chance to make some serious hay in the upcoming weeks; the Cougars don’t face a team with a winning record until Week 7. The Cougars had a workmanlike 24-7 win over Dubuque Hempstead last week. Sophomore Cade Parker has collected 34 tackles, most of anybody in Class 4A through the first three weeks.



Davenport Central at Cedar Rapids Praiire

Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at John Wall Field


Records and rankings — Central is 2-1; Class 4A ninth-rated Prairie is 3-0.

Overview — Prairie must move on without one of its top players after Levi Usher sustained a broken leg in the Hawks’ win over Clinton last week. Still, the Hawks are solid favorites to move to 4-0 as long as they aren’t distracted by what lies ahead (a trip to Iowa City West next week in their district opener). Junior Keegan Simmons ranks fifth in Class 4A in rushing with 490 yards (and six touchdowns). Central opened with two straight wins before suffering a 27-7 loss to North Scott last week.

Cedar Rapids Xavier at Charles City

Time and site — 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Charles City

Records and rankings — Top-ranked Xavier is 3-0 overall, 1-0 Class 3A District 3; Charles City is 1-2, 1-0.

Overview — The Saints make the 100-mile trip to Floyd County with hopes of extending their 22-game regular-season winning streak. They have been dominant defensively through most of their first three games, and opened district play with a 31-21 win over Benton Community, building a 24-0 lead. Quinn Schulte has passed for 254 yards and rushed for 205, with five total touchdowns. Charles City is coming off a 29-20 loss to South Tama in which Tyreque Baker scored two touchdowns.

Dubuque Wahlert at Marion

Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Thomas Park Field

Records and rankings — Wahlert is 1-2 overall, 1-0 Class 3A District 4; Marion is 2-1, 1-0.

Overview — If Marion can pick up a win Friday, the Indians have a very legitimate chance to be 5-0 in district play heading into a challenging home stretch. They accumulated 426 total yards (337 on the ground) in a 49-3 rout of DeWitt Central last week. QB Trevor Paulsen ran for three touchdowns. Wahlert lost its first two games by a total of five points, then topped Clear Creek Amana, 42-20, in Week 3. Wahlert’s Kolton Bartow has netted 484 ground yards and six touchdowns.


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Iowa City Regina at Sigourney-Keota

Time and site — 7 p.m. Friday, at Sigourney

Records and rankings — Both teams are 1-2 overall, 1-0 Class 1A District 4. Regina is ranked No. 3.

Overview — Regina figured to return to its dominant ways once district season opened, and the Regals took care of Wapello, 56-7, to answer their first 0-2 start since 2002. Michael Conlon completed 12 of 18 passes for 305 yards and three touchdowns, spreading out the scoring aerials to Ryan Schott, Isaac Vollstedt and Alec Wick. Similarly, Sigourney-Keota turned things around last week with a 60-13 rout of Highland.

Washington (Iowa) at Solon

Time and site — 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Solon

Records and rankings — Both teams are 3-0 overall, 1-0 Class 3A District 5. Solon is ranked third; Washington is No. 8.

Overview — Solon has been dynamite defensively, allowing a single touchdown in its first three games. The Spartans blanked Mount Vernon and Iowa City Regina in the first two games, and have outscored their foes by a 99-7 count. Coal Flansburg has intercepted two passes, and Adam Bock has recorded two fumble recoveries. Both have a defensive touchdown. Washington buried its first two opponents, then had to sweat out a 16-14 decision against Mount Pleasant. The Demons were without QB Ryan Reighard last week, but sophomore Luke Turner came in and accumulated 213 total yards.



Waukon at Cascade

Time and site — 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Cascade


Records and rankings — Both teams are 3-0 overall, 1-0 Class 2A District 4. Waukon is ranked No. 1; Cascade is No. 7.

Overview — Led by Mitchell Snitker, Waukon has been an offensive juggarnaut, passing the 50-point mark twice, including a 53-35 conquest of Dyersville Beckman last week. Snitker has reached the end zone nine times (four rushing, three receiving, twice on returns) and has rushed for 430 yards (9.6 per carry). The Indians will be tested by Cascade’s defense, which has allowed only six points in three games. The Cougars have outscored their opposition, 108-6, but all three of those teams are 0-3. Cascade QB Haris Hoffman has thrown for 593 yards and five touchdowns, but Jadon Johnson (four INTs) lurks in the Waukon secondary.



West Branch at Maquoketa Valley

Time and site — 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Delhi

Records and rankings — Both teams are 3-0 overall, 1-0 Class 1A District 3. West Branch is ranked eighth.

Overview — Maquoketa Valley is 3-0 for the second straight year, and hopes it turns out better than last season, when it finished 4-5. This will be a difficult test against a traditional power. The Bears look salty again; they dominated their last two foes by a 77-6 ledger. Bears QB Beau Cornwell has thrown for 569 yards and nine touchdowns (against no interceptions), while Tanner Lukavsky has rushed for 336 yards and four TDs. The Wildcats counter with the pass-catch combo of Tyson Tucker (27-43-4, 459 yards, 5 TDs) and Brock Hillers (12 catches, 265 yards, 3 TDs).

Wapsie Valley at East Buchanan

Time and site — 7 p.m. Friday, at Winthrop

Records and rankings — Both teams are 3-0 overall, 1-0 Class A District 4. Wapsie Valley is ranked eighth.


Overview — Both teams are coming off impressive district openers a week ago. Wapsie Valley handled Alburnett, 32-6, behind 107 yards and two touchdowns from running back Colin Schrader. East Buchanan, meanwhile, rushed for 316 yards (127 by Braydon Nunemaker) and downed North Linn, 28-6. James Mossman returned an interception 95 yards for a touchdown. Both teams have been excellent defensively, allowing a lone touchdown in each of the first three games. Spencer Cook has three interceptions for the Buccaneers.

West Delaware at Center Point-Urbana

Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Center Point

Records and rankings — West Delaware is 2-1 overall, 1-0 Class 3A District 4; CPU is 3-0, 1-0.

Overview — CPU has assembled a very nice start, though there’s a “but” involved — the Stormin’ Pointers’ first three opponents are 0-3. Still, a 114-29 scoring margin is nothing to sneeze at, and a lot of the top skill players are young, including sophomores Alex Wade (running back) and Caleb Andrews (quarterback). West Delaware certainly provides a big jump in competition, though the Hawks lost in Week 2 to Mount Vernon and needed overtime to outlast Davenport Assumption last Friday. Junior Nick Casey has passed for nearly 200 yards per game, and has very good targets in Tyler Kelley and Mitchel Mangold.

Linn-Mar at Cedar Rapids Washington

Time and site — 7:15 p.m. Thursday, at Kingston Stadium

Records and rankings — Linn-Mar is 0-3; Washington is 1-2.

Overview — If their summer 7-on-7 encounter is any indication, this promises to be emotional and intense. Former Washington coach Paul James takes his new team into Kingston to face the up-and-down Warriors. Linn-Mar’s rally last week against Cedar Rapids Jefferson fell short in a 27-20 defeat, keeping the Lions winless. Washington followed a stirring Week 2 win over Cedar Rapids Kennedy with a thud, falling 56-0 to Bettendorf. Washington’s Ty Johnson is second in 4A in tackles (30.5).

l Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com



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