CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - A dozen key area football games for Week 4:
CEDAR RAPIDS PRAIRIE at IOWA CITY WEST
Time and site: 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Trojan Field
Records and rankings: Prairie is 2-1; Class 4A second-rated West is 3-0.
Notable: After starting 2-0, Prairie absorbed a 48-14 thumping at the hands of Cedar Rapids Xavier last week, and has another extremely tough test ahead. Both teams are full of playmakers. West is averaging 48.7 points per game (fourth in 4A) behind a passing game that is netting nearly 300 yards per game. Nate Boland is completing 72 percent of his throws, and Dondre Alexander and Jeremy Morgan are lethal on the edge. Both are averaging nearly 20 yards per catch. Prairie's Jace Hanna has passed for 696 yards himself, and he has two receiving weapons of his own in Jarred Edmonds and DeMetrius Harper.
EDDYVILLE-BLAKESBURG at IOWA CITY REGINA
Time and site: 7 p.m. Friday, at Regina
Records and rankings: Eddyville-Blakesburg is 2-1 overall, 1-0 Class 1A District 6; No. 1 Regina is 3-0, 1-0.
Notable: After squeaking past West Branch, 15-13, last week, the Regals figure to have an easier time this week and extend a winning streak that now stands at 31 games. Mark Ward (27 of 46, 433 yards, 7 TDs) and Alex Balke (11 catches, 231 yards, 6 TDs) have been a dependable passing duo, while Mike Donovan has staked the defense with three fumble recoveries. Eddyville-Blakesburg isn't afraid to throw, either. Trevor Swartz has completed 61 percent of his throws for 342 yards.
MARION at WASHINGTON (Iowa)
Time and site: 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Washington
Records and rankings: Both teams are 2-1 and unranked.
Notable: It's a bye week as far as district play is concerned for these 3A teams, but this will be an intriguing non-league encounter. Marion hasn't played a close game yet, routing Mount Pleasant and Anamosa and getting beat soundly by No. 1 Decorah. Washington, on the other hand, has played an overtime game (lost to Pella) and a one-pointer (win over Fairfield). Trev Beiry leads the Indians in rushing with 299 yards, and is second on the team with 18 tackles. Washington QB Daryn Seibelius spearheads a balanced passing attack; he has passed for 244 yards, completing 26 of 39 attempts.
DUBUQUE WAHLERT at CEDAR RAPIDS XAVIER
Time and site: 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Saints Field
Records and rankings: Wahlert is 1-2 overall, 0-0 MVC Valley Division; Class 4A No. 7 Xavier is 3-0, 1-0.
Notable: The Saints will play their first game without leading rusher Cal Stovie, who torn an ACL in the Saints' 48-14 Week 3 win over Cedar Rapids Prairie and will miss the remainder of the season. Stovie rushed for 488 yards and 10.2 yards per carry in the first three weeks. The passing game remains intact, though: Reggie Schulte is the post efficient quarterback in 4A. Schulte has completed 77 percent of his passes for 451 yards and 10 touchdowns). Xavier only has one remaining opponent that currently has a winning record Cedar Falls in Week 8. Wahlert has a solid receiver in Kyle Steines, who has caught 16 passes for 219 yards.
IOWA CITY HIGH at CEDAR RAPIDS JEFFERSON
Time and site: 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Kingston Stadium
Records and rankings: City High is 2-1 overall, 1-0 in the MVC Mississippi Division; Jefferson is 1-2, 1-0. Both are unranked.
Notable: The counting has ceased; the losing streak is over at Jefferson. The J-Hawks won for the first time in 25 games, knocking off Dubuque Hempstead, 12-7, last week. Now, it's time to get back to work, because City High presents a formidable test. The Little Hawks jumped out early and held off Waterloo East, 38-26, last Friday. Sophomore Bryson Runge has rushed for 222 yards. Jefferson will try to stay in the game with an offense that has managed just 19 points in three games.
CEDAR RAPIDS KENNEDY at DUBUQUE SENIOR
Time and site: 7:15 p.m. Friday, at the University of Dubuque
Records and rankings: Kennedy is 0-3 overall, 0-1 in the MVC Mississippi Division; Senior is 3-0, 0-0. Both are unranked.
Notable: Despite the records, this is a winnable game for Kennedy, and it's a game the Cougars sorely need especially with Cedar Rapids Xavier waiting next week. Alex Hillyer ranks third in Class 4A (and No. 1 in the MVC) in rushing at 517 yards rushing. Kennedy competed with Iowa City West for a half last week, trailing just 21-14 at intermission before it slipped away. This is probably Senior's toughest test to date; the Rams' first three opponents are a combined 2-7. Austin Clemens has passed for 499 yards; Alex Duster has rushed for 306.
CEDAR RAPIDS WASHINGTON at LINN-MAR
Time and site: 7:15 p.m. Friday, at Linn-Mar Stadium
Records and rankings: Washington is 1-2 overall, 0-1 MVC Valley Division; Linn-Mar is 0-3, 0-1. Both are unranked.
Notable: The last time these teams met, Washington rallied for two touchdowns in the final minutes to shock the Lions, 28-26, in a second-round playoff game last year. This certainly isn't the same team that went 10-1 last year at Linn-Mar. The Lions have lost to a pair of traditional low-end MVC teams in Dubuque Senior and Waterloo West, and sorely need something positive to happen. Washington has dropped two straight (against Iowa City West and Cedar Falls). Mitch Blades has passed for 412 yards and rushed for 241.
SPRINGVILLE at LANSING KEE
Time and site: 7 p.m. Friday, at Lansing
Records and rankings: Both teams are 3-0 overall, 2-0 Eight-Man District 4. Both are unranked.
Notable: Springville is off to its best start in many, many years and hopes to take another step Friday toward its first playoff berth in school history. The Orioles jumped all over Cedar Valley Christian early and breezed to a 68-6 win last week. Elias Nissen has rushed for 302 yards and averages 9.4 yards per carry. Drake Coonrod has two interceptions, both for touchdowns. Kee High has won three straight close games. Jameson Peterson has been the work horse for the Hawks, carrying the ball 78 times for 483 yards and five touchdowns.
HLV at TRI-COUNTY
Time and site: 7 p.m., at Thornburg
Records and rankings: HLV is 3-0 overall, 2-0 Eight-Man District 5; Tri-County is 2-1, 2-0. Both are unranked.
Notable: The foray into eight-man football has been a happy journey thus far for HLV, which has outscored its first three opponents by a 197-19 margin. Through three games, the Warriors have run 71 offensive plays, 24 of which have resulted in touchdowns. And those 71 plays have churned out an average of 15.9 yards. Tri-County should offer some resistance; the Trojans are allowing less than 13 points per game. Spencer Steinke has 22 tackles and two interceptions.
IOWA VALLEY at NORTH TAMA
Time and site: 7 p.m. Friday, at Traer
Records and rankings: Iowa Valley is 3-1 overall, 0-1 Class A District 4; No. 8 North Tama is 3-1, 1-0.
Notable: Nolan Hefty is an active young man. The North Tama senior leads the state in tackles, with 78. The Redhawks have morphed into a pass-first squad; Jacob Wrage has completed 47 of 77 passes for 727 yards. Iowa Valley clicked off three straight wins before suffering a defeat to Gladbrook-Reinbeck in its district opener, and the Tigers need a win Friday to climb back into the district title hunt. John Gormley has rushed for 471 yards and 10 touchdowns.
NORTH FAYETTE at SAINT ANSGAR
Time and site: 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Saint Ansgar
Records and rankings: North Fayette is 2-1 overall, 0-1 Class 1A District 4; No. 3 Saint Ansgar is 3-0, 0-0.
Notable: North Fayette made its 1A district debut last week, falling to Denver, 28-7. Now the Hawks hit the road to face the defending state champions with hopes of avoiding an 0-2 start. Saint Ansgar has won back-to-back nailbiters, edging West Hancock (14-12) and Osage (23-20). Juniors Kyle Hanson and Brett Williams have rushed for 521 and 278 yards, respectively. North Fayette's Josh Mackey has 440 rushing yards.
WEST BRANCH at WILTON
Time and site: 7 p.m. Friday, at Wilton
Records and rankings: Eighth-ranked West Branch is 2-1 overall, 0-1 Class 1A District 6; Wilton is 2-1, 1-0.
Notable: With the teams in the same district, the Pedersen Bowl takes on extra meaning. Butch Pedersen's West Branch squad took Iowa City Regina to the wire before falling, 15-13, last week while Lance Pedersen's Wilton outfit won its second straight game. Cade Jones leads the West Branch attack with 466 rushing yards and six touchdowns. Wilton is more likely to throw, behind Tyler Hetzler (32 of 59, 576 yards).
OTHER GAMES INVOLVING METRO/IOWA CITY TEAMS
Cedar Valley Christian (0-3 overall, 0-2 Eight Man District 4) at West Central (3-1, 2-1), 7 p.m. Friday