Week 6 Prep Football Preview
Des Moines Hoover (1-4) at Marshalltown (4-2)
The dreaded distraction of Homecoming finds the Marshalltown Bobcats in the midst of a three-game winning streak with Hoover standing in the way of a 5-2 start and next week's bye.
Marshalltown's top-ranked passing attack has stayed the course, cruising to an average of 387 yards per game behind quarterback Blake Gimbel and the state's leading receiver Tad Steffensen.
Hoover also likes to do its damage through the air as the Huskies come into the game with the 10th most passing yards in the state at 1,202, led by sophomore Brock Larson, who also has 11 touchdown passes.
The Huskies' lone win this year came by three points to Des Moines Roosevelt, and they also came within one point of Des Moines North, losing 22-21.
South Tama (4-1, 2-1) at Ballard (2-3, 1-1)
There would appear to be more to Ballard than its 2-3 record, as back-to-back losses to still-unbeatens Norwalk and Boone might suggest.
South Tama's schedule has been less grueling, and the Trojans have taken full advantage. STC boasts the ninth-best rushing attack in the state behind senior tailback and Homecoming king Kyle Stephenson, who ranks fourth with 854 yards to go along with 13 TDs.
Ballard has been substantially more successful passing than running, with QB Caleb Schafbuch leading the way.
This game stands to determine a lot in the playoff picture as the District 4 schedule nears its end.
East Marshall (3-3, 1-0) at Gilbert (1-3, 0-2)
Nothing more the locals could ask for than a potential clash between district unbeatens East and West Marshall in two weeks, but a Mustang victory at Gilbert would provide just that. With Class 2A No. 3 West Marshall (6-0, 2-0) idle this week, East Marshall has a chance to join the Trojans atop District 7 with sterling
2-0 starts heading into a Week 7 clash in
First, East Marshall must take care of business against a Gilbert team giving up an average of 44 points per game. Christopher Culek has 329 rushing yards and five touchdowns to lead the Tigers, who have lost three straight.
East Marshall's vaunted 1-2 punch on the ground has the team second in 2A in rushing behind only West Marshall. Junior tailback Zach Rubenbauer eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark last week while fullback Josh Wilson (778 yards) is closing in. The duo has combined to score 20 touchdowns.
North Tama (5-1, 3-0) at Gladbrook-Reinbeck (3-2, 2-0)
The last time these two teams met on the gridiron, North Tama secured a district championship with a 31-0 victory over Gladbrook-Reinbeck in a Class 1A showdown at 'The Pit' on Oct. 19, 2001. Both playoff teams were later eliminated by Aplington-Parkersburg, which won its last state title under the late Ed Thomas.
It's too early to award this year's Class A District 4 crown, but someone will get a leg up in the race tonight in Gladbrook.
Two of the more prolific passing teams square off as the eighth-ranked Redhawks are led by Jacob Wrage's 1,075 passing yards and the host Rebels by Trevor Trunck's 700 yards.
The story will likely be told by which team plays better defense, and North Tama has at least hinted at getting back to its stalwart ways.
The Redhawks have allowed 46 points in five games against teams not named Aplington-Parkersburg - just 9.2 per contest. Gladbrook-Reinbeck has withstood aeriel assaults from Hudson, Iowa Valley and BCLUW.
Mason City Newman (3-2, 3-0) at AGWSR (4-2, 1-2)
AGWSR can prove its mettle in District 2 with an upset over 10th-ranked Newman Catholic, but the Cougars will need to excel in stopping a Knights rushing attack led by Joseph Burgmeier.
Burgmeier has 760 yards and nine touchdowns on the ground, carrying the ball a Class A-leading 142 times for Newman. Burgmeier has rushed for more than 150 yards in each of the Knights' three wins.
AGWSR has preached defense since day one, so this will be the Cougars' chance to make a statement. The offense might have to find more than its 21.3 points per game to do it.
Colo-NESCO (4-2, 3-1) at Mormon Trail (1-4, 0-3)
The Royals travel to Garden Grove for an 8-man District 6 clash in hopes of extending the host's losing streak to five games. The Mormon Trail Saints have faced ranked teams from Murray and Adair-Casey along the way and simply haven't been able to keep pace.
Colo-NESCO, a newcomer to the 8-man game, has something nobody else in the state does - two rushers ranked in the top 20. Senior tailback Brandyn Niemeyer ranks sixth (944 yards) and fullback Adam Lytle (678) is 18th, helping the Royals to the fifth-best rushing total in 8-man football. And they're coming off an 80-point performance that saw Niemeyer run for 341 yards and seven scores.