Wawasee (1-5, 1-3 Northern Lakes Conference) at Warsaw (5-1, 4-0 NLC)

When: Friday, 7 p.m., Fisher Field, Warsaw.

Series (last 35 years): Warsaw, 23-12.

John Harrell’s prediction: Warsaw, 45-7.

Last meeting: Oct. 2, 2020, Warsaw 42-17.

About Wawasee — Coach Jon Reutebuch’s Warriors won 21-19  against visiting Plymouth in Week 6 … Nathan Larson’s 24-yard touchdown run at 2:40 of the fourth quarter put Wawasee ahead 21-12. Larson lined up at slot receiver and came into the backfield for the hand-off … Leading rushers for the Warriors were Cameron Zimmerman (88 yards, including a 48-yard gain) and Lucas Ringler (83).

About Warsaw — Coach Bart Curtis’ Tigers won 42-0 at Goshen in Week 6 … Warsaw’s German Flores-Ortega had three short touchdown runs in the first half … Tucker Curtis threw for one TD and ran for another in the second half … Julius Jones (five carries for 121 yards) and Flores-Ortega (17 carries for 90 yards) were rushing leaders … The Tigers scored on their first six possessions and took a knee on the seventh … Two Warsaw scores came moments after interceptions by Corbin Johnston and Aiden Binkerd … The shutout was the first for the Tiger defense since a 35-0 triumph against Goshen in 2018.

Per Wawasee coach Jon Reutebuch:

On Warsaw – It’s a big challenge. Warsaw is one of the better teams in the conference … It’s a Bart Curtis-coached team. They’re going to know their assignments.

Sub-varsity — We’ve only played four JV games (with players being moved up to fill varsity roles) … Our freshmen have been playing all season.

On Plymouth game — We had most everybody back. That was the No. 1 plus. We had some depth. Guys didn’t have to go both ways and play special teams. Hopefully, we continue on this trend … The second plus is that we played well enough to win. When we made a mistake we kept plugging away … Our senior kicker (Caleb Clevenger) was out sick and sophomore Lucas Linder handled kickoffs and made all three extra points … Jared Smith was back and played really well (in the secondary) … It was bend-don’t-break (on defense). They had their backs against the wall a couple of times but did not give up a score.

Per Warsaw coach Bart Curtis:

On Wawasee — It looks like they’re starting to get things figured out … They’ve found a combination of players. I know they’ve had some kids out, but the team they put on the field against Plymouth is a formidable team … (Nathan) Larson is their dude. They’re going to try to get him the football in a variety of positions … Larson is an outstanding outside linebacker. (Aidan) Monds is a good inside linebacker. (Collin) Roberson is probably their quickest and most active defensive lineman … Their offensive line is massive … They’re very formidable, very capable.

Varsity, JV and Frosh — We’re going to play a full schedule at all three levels (adjustments have been made to pick up new opponents when necessary). We feel that’s important.

On Goshen game — It feels like we’ve had more red-zone stops this season than the last two years combined (the Tigers stopped the RedHawks at the 22 and inside the 10) … We’re playing with an awful lot of confidence. We’re playing hard. The kids that got a lot of experience last year is starting to show on the defensive end … We’re playing at a high level, but we’ll need to play at a much higher level to get where we’d like to be … We need to do a better job tackling the people at the hip or below.

Indiana Tailgate Tour – The College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship coming to Indianapolis Jan. 10, 2022, and Indianapolis Host Committee will bring the Indiana Tailgate Tour to Friday’s “W Game.” A $1,000 grant will be presented at halftime to the participating schools to aid in teacher and classroom development. An additional $500 will be donated to each school’s athletic department.



Tippecanoe Valley (6-0 overall, 4-0 TRC) at Maconaquah (2-2, 2-2)

When: Friday, 7 p.m., Maconaquah High.

Series: Tied 2-2.

Last meeting: Valley won 20-17, Oct. 2, 2020.

Last Maconaquah win: 24-3, Oct. 4, 2019.

John Harrell’s prediction: Valley, 45-17.

About Valley: A victory Friday gives the Class 3A No. 8-ranked Vikings their best start in 34 years. They won their first nine games in 1987. … Valley was up 60-0 by halftime during last week’s 60-0 shutout of Whitko. … Viking senior Braden Shepherd has been a huge-play threat no matter how he touches the ball. He’s returned 10 punts for a 23.3 average and a touchdown, rushed for 343 yards, four TDs and an 8.2 average, and turned 10 receptions into 261 yards and four more scores. … Senior quarterback Branson McBrier remains ultra-efficient throwing at 40-of-55 (72.7%) for 726 yards with eight TDs against no interceptions. … In the win over Whitko, Valley’s defense registered 11 tackles for loss, including three by sophomore Cameron Mason, and had three fumble recoveries, including two by sophomore Nathan Parker.

About Maconaquah: The Braves, in their 59th year, set a school record for points during last week’s 72-20 victory at winless North Miami. Mac led 42-6 after one quarter and 66-6 by halftime — those 66 enough to break the previous full-game standard of 59. … Sophomore QB Braxton Birner continued to post video-game-like numbers, hitting 21-of-26 passes for 395 yards and seven TDs against no interceptions. Over his last three games, Birner’s 84-of-107 (78.5%) for 1,085 yards and 15 TDs against two picks. On the season, he’s averaging 310.8 pass yards per outing, second in the state. … Four receivers have caught between 18 and 24 passes each over the Braves’ four games. … The Mac defense has notched seven interceptions and seven fumble recoveries. … The Braves had to cancel their first two games, then opened with a 48-0 loss at Northfield, which was playing its third game. Mac also fell 48-20 two weeks ago to Peru, a team Valley topped 45-9.

Valley coach Steve Moriarty:

On last week — “I thought we played pretty sound, gave up 53 total yards. I was proud of our kids for coming prepared. Sometimes those can be trap games.”

On Maconaquah — “They do enjoy throwing the ball. The numbers are crazy and the quarterback’s (completion) percentage is outrageous, and he’s a sophomore. On the other side, their defense is very aggressive. It’s going to be hard to beat them deep.”

On Mac’s offense — “It’s a system offense. What they do is flood a zone, so you have to make a decision, and once you do, it makes it a pretty easy read for the quarterback. What worries me is making sure we don’t have blown coverages.”

Manchester (2-3 overall, 2-2 TRC) at Whitko (1-5, 1-4)

When: Friday, 7 p.m., Huff Stadium.

Series: Whitko leads 34-15.

Last meeting: Whitko won 20-14, Oct. 2, 2020.

Last Manchester win: 14-0, Oct. 4, 2019.

John Harrell’s prediction: Manchester, 38-14.

About Manchester: The Squires’ all-time 50th matchup against Whitko comes on the heels of a monumental 33-22 victory at perennial TRC contender Southwood. Manchester had not beaten the Knights since 2012, and Southwood had won each of the four matchups since 2017 by at least 33 points. … The Squires scored 26 straight points to take a 33-7 lead before the hosts tallied a pair of fourth-quarter TDs to tighten the final margin. … Senior running back Braxton Ream rushed for a season-high 186 yards and two touchdowns on 28 carries, pushing his season totals to 559 yards and four TDs on 87 attempts, good for a 6.4 average. … Senior receiver Seth Gaerte has 29 receptions for 452 yards and a half-dozen touchdowns, while junior QB Brock Casper is 59-of-117 passing for 819 yards with 10 TDs against three picks. … Seniors Dylan Stroud and Dominic Lincoln are deadlocked for the team lead in tackles at 51 apiece.

About Whitko: The Wildcats were limited to seven points or fewer for the fifth time in their six games during their 60-0 loss last week at Tippecanoe Valley. … Running back Tyler Veach gained 73 yards on 30 carries in a workhorse effort for Whitko. Veach has 204 yards on 57 tries over the three contests that he has been his team’s featured back. Defensively, the senior linebacker logged his sixth straight double-digit outing in tackles last week. On the season, he’s at 54 solo tackles, tied for third in the state, and 81 total tackles, tied for fifth. … Sophomore Dean Boggs has added 46 tackles for the Cats, including 34 solos.

Manchester coach Alyx Brandewie:

On last week — “Two things that stood out, and I think they’re definitely related, are first, how hard our kids played — it was a seriously great effort top to bottom — and then second, it was as physical as we’ve been. I have to believe those two things are related. We were crazy good with our effort, and our physical play put us in a lot of good positions.”

On Whitko — “Their kids play hard. You could say they’re maybe a little undersized and the numbers aren’t where they want to be, but they’ve had every opportunity in the world to stop pushing, and they’ve just played really hard.”

On Veach — “I think tireless is exactly the right word for him. There’s a relentlessness that he plays with that you see on both sides of the ball. He’s a sheer force of will and never stops coming at you.”

Whitko coach Chip Coldiron:

On last week — “The positive was that we always kept trying, never gave up, fought every play. I’ve been around kids that didn’t give up 60 in a half and did want to take themselves out because of how it was going, but none of our kids did that. Our seniors, even though it was going bad, if there was something where they could teach a younger kid or show them, they did that.”

On Manchester — “They’re probably the most balanced team we will have faced. They’ve thrown for about 50% of their yards and they’re good at running it. You gotta pick something in that balance and try to shut it down, but they make it hard.”

On Ream and Gaerte — “They both get around 90 to 100 yards a game, and obviously their quarterback can throw it, and then defensively, they’ve got some playmakers at linebacker and defensive back.”



North Judson (4-2, 3-0 Hoosier North Athletic Conference) at Triton (3-3, 2-2 HNAC)

When: Friday, 7:30 p.m., Trojan Field, Bourbon.

Series (last 35 years): North Judson, 4-3.

John Harrell’s prediction: North Judson, 28-17.

Last meeting: Oct. 2, 2020, North Judson 30-12.

About North Judson — Coach Brett Lambert’s Bluejays lost 42-21 at Culver Academy in Week 6 … North Judson is led offensively by quarterback Aldric Harper and wingback Cheyenne Allen and defensively by linebackers Owen Frasure and Quinton Frasure.

About Triton — Coach Rodney Younis’ Trojans lost 26-6 at Pioneer in Week 6 … Offensive leaders for Triton included Anthony Schuh (19 carries for 75 yards with a 48-yard TD run) and Amari Snyder (two catches for 18 yards) … Pacing the defense were Snyder (5 tackles), Tyler Amsden (4.5 tackles with 1.5 tackles for loss) and Anthony Schuh (3.5 tackles with 1.5 tackles for loss) … On the season, leaders include Cole Shively (25-of-65 for 245 yards and four TDs) in passing, Anthony Schuh (188 carries for 844 yards and six TDs) and Shivley (48 carries for 117 yards and one TD) in rushing and Snyder (11 catches for 89 yards) in receiving as well as Brayden Cunningham (58), Landon Lemler (46 with two fumble recoveries) and Reilley Wood (46) in total tackles.

Per Triton coach Rodney Younis:

On North Judson – They’re another quality team. In our conference, everybody’s good … They’ve got size and speed … They play the option. We’ll have to focus on our assignments. They’ve got a quick quarterback, fullback and tailback. It’s important that everyone does their job.

Inside or outside? — We try to be balanced and hit all areas of the field (on runs and passes). We do have some speed and we try to utilize that.

On Pioneer game — Statistically it was an evenly-matched games. The special teams and penalties beat us. We had a number of drives where we’d get a first down then we’d get a penalty.