Playoff matchup previews
The 9-0 Murray Mustangs play host to Twin Cedars (5-4) Wednesday in the first round of the Eight-Man playoffs, with kickoff at 7 p.m.
The Mustangs come in with a high-octane offense, but will be without big-play threat Andrew Rider, who broke his arm in the regular season finale.
Twin Cedars features an efficient passing attack led by quarterback Brent Parker, who has thrown for 1,443 yards and 22 touchdowns compared to just three interceptions, while completing 54 percent of his passes.
Twin Cedars also has a balanced rushing attack, with three different players getting more than 50 carries with more than 300 yards rushing.
The winner advances to play the winner of the Melcher-Dallas and Colo-Nesco game.
Lenox (6-3) travels to Exira-EHK (9-0) for its Eight-Man playoff opener on Wednesday.
Head coach Allen Dukes said he believes the Tigers match up well with Exira-EHK.
“I don’t know if we outshine them in anything we do, but consistency is basically what we have to do a lot better job at,” Dukes said. “I think we match up pretty well, actually.”
Exira-EHK features a potent rushing attack, with three players accumulating more than 700 yards rushing this year.
“They are very physical. They are a young team,” Dukes said. “They run the ball hard. They don’t throw the ball very much, but when they do, it is fairly effective. They run the ball out of different formations. We have to be on top of what they’re doing. I think we scouted them pretty well. Our kids just have to step up and make plays.”
The winner of this matchup advances to take on the winner of Fremont-Mills and Coon Rapids-Bayard.
Mount Ayr vs.
West Central Valley
The Mount Ayr Raiders (9-0) host West Central Valley (4-5) Wednesday in the Class 1A playoff opener.
West Central Valley is another team that builds around the run.
“They’re going to establish the run,” Mount Ayr co-head coach Delwyn Showalter said. “They’ve got almost 2,000 yards rushing this year. They’re going to give us some different looks.”
The Wildcats feature five players with more than 200 yards rushing for the season, with each of them scoring multiple touchdowns on the ground.
Showalter said WCV utilizes the tight end in the passing game, which is something Mount Ayr doesn’t see much from opponents anymore.
Another change Mount Ayr will see from WCV is its defensive front, which is a 3-3 with a variation of the cover-2 in the secondary.
The winner of this game moves on to face the winner of Tri-Center and Ogden.