Hudson (3-4, 3-2) at EC Memorial (5-2, 3-2)
What: Big Rivers, Friday, 7 p.m. at Carson Park.
Series history: Hudson won last year 43-21 for an eighth win in nine games and leads in games since 1986 by 18-17.
Memorial: Battle to stay in title and playoff contention for both teams. Abes coming off 35-0 win over North with the return of RB Loyal Crawford (619, 9.8, 11 TD), who ran for 114 yards and two scores. QB Bryson Johnson (80-146-6, 1,324, 7) passed for 182 yards, four going to Calvin Tanner (19-355-1) for 134 yards and score, all in first half. Other leading receivers are Will Hesse (18-436-6) and Jack Piper (20-336). Other ground threats are Reese Woerner (169, 4.2) and Ethan Van Grunsven (180, 6.2). Defense limited North to 97 yards with Mitch Voller and Nolan Miller credited with two sacks each. Outscoring opponent’s 224-148 and outgaining them 375-268 in average yards. Veteran lineman Nick Oberding did not play last week and remains doubtful. Coach Mike Sinz: “They are physical and for us to have a chance to win, we have to match them up front. They are long and athletic in the D line. We can’t give up the big plays.”
Hudson: Won three of last four including by 40-8 at Rice Lake last week. Handed Superior its only loss 49-24 with only conference losses to River Falls and Menomonie. A physical team with a strong line. Averaged 40 points over last four games. For the year, outscoring opponents 209-151. Hunter Danielson scored three TD last week and is main ground threat along with Owen Anderson but they have a lot of talent and spread it out. Line is led by Badger recruit Cade McDonald. Coached by Adam Kowles.
EC North (0-7, 0-5) at Chippewa Falls (1-6, 1-4)
What: Big Rivers, 7 p.m. at Dorais Field.
Series history: Chippewa won last year 42-6 for fourth straight and 13 of last 15 and leads in games since 1963 by 37-19.
North: Held in check by Memorial last week after making big strides with strong running game. Scored 94 points and averaging 235 yards but allowed 315 points and yielding 397 average yards. Main threat is RB Sam Barby (667, 5.6, 6), who has had three 100-yard games. Charlie Wolter has rushed for 228 yards. QB Kyle Greenlund (25-46-4, 274) passed for 74 yards last week with Matt Johnson (9-134) main target. Defense must step up this week. LB Luke Poldolak missed last week and is questionable. QB Kyle Greenlund has been battling illness, which is running through team. Coach Andy Jarzynski: “It will be interesting to see how the kids snap back from last week. But they’re still excited, the JV team beat Memorial this week. If the weather is bad, both teams will probably want to run the ball so it will be important to handle the ball well. We’ll do what we do.”
Chippewa: Lost 37-20 last week to River Falls in strong effort and only win was by 16-12 over Rice Lake. Outscored by 229-96 and outgained 350-212 in average yards. Tyler Bohland (205, 4.0) rushed for a season-high 92 yards last week and Bohde Torkelson had a high 76. Leading rusher is Ben Steinmetz (453, 6.7, 8). QB Hayden Goodman (57-111-6, 578, 4) is pass threat, throwing to Steinmetz (19-233), Bohland (16-153) and Ben Carani (15-140-2). Coach Chuck Raykovich: “The kids are getting better but North is too. It will come down to who wants the game the most.”
Spencer/Columbus (4-3, 4-2) at EC Regis (7-0, 6-0)
What: Cloverbelt, tonight, 7 p.m. at Carson Park.
Series history: Regis won last year 23-6 and leads in games since 2008 by 9-2.
Regis: Defeated Colby 40-9 last week to stand alone atop conference, needing win against dangerous opponent to secure share of title. Outscoring opponents 340-66 and outgaining them 352-187 in average yards. Led by ground game that averages 8.4 yards per carry with 34 TD. Leaders are Tristan Root (510, 10.4, 13 total TD), Hayden Reinders (412, 12.5, 10) and Gus Theisen (382, 13.6, 9), who had team’s second 100-yard game last week with 102 with the help of 70-yard TD run. QB Bennett Seelen (10-26-4, 328, 4) passes to various receivers, including Root (3-148-2) and Gabe Chenal (4-121-1). Defensive leaders in tackles are Payton Kostka (58), Chenal (47) and Luke Rooney and Alex Leis (41). Root tied a school and city record last week with a 45-yard field goal. Coach Bryant Brenner: “Bacon has a lot of speed and they will try to get him in space. We’ve got to try to contain him and match their intensity. I feel we’re making progress.”
Spencer: Defeated Cadott last week 28-22 after losing 28-22 to Colby in overtime week earlier. Other wins over Stanley-Boyd, Fall Creek and Neillsville. Outscoring opponents 218-143. Led by the running of Austin Bacon, who had TD runs of 65 and 49 yards, totaled 204 yards last week and has 669 yards for season. Eden Jacobson added 136 yards and has 867 for the season. Coached by Jason Gorst.
Elk Mound (4-3, 3-2) at Altoona (2-5, 2-5)
What: Non-conference, Friday, 7 p.m. at Fuzzy Thurston Field.
Series history: Elk Mound won last year 61-0.
Altoona: On the rebound from a 43-0 loss to Osseo-Fairchild after defeating Neillsville-Granton 28-14 a week earlier. Other win by 34-8 over Fall Creek. Outscored by 250-98 and outgained 291-245 in average yards. Need to get option offense in gear with RB Paxton Gluch, who has 700 yards rushing and five TD, and the passing and running of QB Nate McMahon (800 yards). Leading receiver is Keshawn Harris. Coach Chad Hanson: “We were not at full strength last week but hope to be stronger. It was a hard loss for us because it took us out of playoff contention. We’ve got to try to contain their back. We’re playing for pride and doing the best we can to build some momentum for next year.”
Elk Mound: Lost to Spring Valley 27-0 last week and other losses to St. Croix Central 29-8 and Mondovi 48-0. Led by the rushing of Blaze Todd, who has had three 200-yard games and has gone over 100 five times and totals 1,263 yards while QB Chase Rhude has passed for 317 yards with Ben Heath his main target with 285 receiving yards. Scored 197 points and allowed 130. Coached by Dave Lew.
Menomonie (6-1, 4-1) at Rice Lake (1-6, 1-4)
What: Big Rivers, Friday, 7 p.m. at Pug Lund Field.
Series history: Rice Lake won last year 26-20 but Menomonie has won 15 of last 18 and leads in games since 1983 by 30-6.
Menomonie: With the help of several key injuries, knocked from the unbeaten ranks 14-13 at Superior last week after 4th quarter conversion kick failed. Outscored opponent’s 219-82. Thomas Poplawski scored both TD last week and ran for 115 yards backed up by Zach DeMarce and Will Ockler, who has run for over 400 yards. QB Tyler Werner, who has passed for over 600 yards, did not play and remains doubtful. RB/DB DeVauntaye Parker was injured early and is out this week. TE/K Kaleb Kazmarek also injured. Davis Barthen and Brock Thornton are leading receivers. Coach Joe LaBuda: “We’re banged up bad and Rice Lake always rises up against us. We expect a tough, physical game with them as usual.”
Rice Lake: Lost 40-8 to Hudson last week and only win by 34-13 over North. Lost in four close games. Outscored 144-91. Among ground threats out of option attack are Tristan Scheurer, who has had a 100-yard game, Zack Fisher and Andrew Farm. Coached by Dan Hill.