Warsaw (5-1, 4-0 NLC)

at Wawasee (2-4, 0-4)

When: Friday, 7 p.m., Warrior Field, Syracuse.

Series (last 35 years): Warsaw, 22-13.

John Harrell’s prediction: Warsaw, 35-21.

Last meeting: Oct. 4, 2019, Warsaw 42-18.

Last time Wawasee won: Oct. 3, 2014, 21-10.

About Warsaw: Coach Bart Curtis’ Tigers beat Goshen 41-28 Sept. 25 … Six different Warsaw players — Aaron Greene (run), Caden Silveus (interception return), Mason Martz (run), Luke Adamiec (catch) … Juan Jaramillo (run) and German Flores-Ortega (run) — scored touchdowns The Adamiec TD came on a pass from running back Julius Jones … Season stat pacers are Jones (48 carries for 605 yards and two TD’s), Greene (101 attempts for 549 yards and nine TD’s), Jaramillo (87 runs for 369 yards and six TD’s) and Colton Wampler (56 totes for 204 yards and three TD’s) in rushing, Greene (8-of-16 for 185 yards and two TD’s) in passing and Adamiec (three catches for 121 yards and two TD’s) and Jackson Dawson (two receptions for 41 yards) in receiving … Total tackles leaders are Martz (30 with three for loss), Theo Katris (22.5), Zach DeFord (22) and Zachary Diecks (20). Silveus has a team-best three interceptions … Warsaw averages 33.2 points per game on offense and 27.3 on defense … Warsaw has won the last five “W” games against Wawasee.

About Wawasee: Coach Jon Reutebuch’s Warriors lost 37-12 at Plymouth Sept. 25 … TD’s were scored for Wawasee by Dominic Blair (run) and Cameron Zimmerman (run) … Wawasee averages 15.3 points per game on offense and 20.7 on defense.

Warsaw coach Curtis:

On Wawasee: “They’re good enough to beat people. They have a dynamic passing game. They do an outstanding job of getting the football out to people in place and letting them run and that’s very concerning … They moved the ball down the field at will against Warsaw (in 2018 and 2019) … They have some nice size upfront and they run pretty well … The things we are good at, they defend those things well … We’re going to have to play really good football to accomplish what we want to accomplish.”

Trick plays: “We hate to rely on those. It worked out (against Goshen). As it turned out, we needed it … Each week we add one — or try to. Every Thursday we practice our trick plays. By the end of the year, we have a playbook of chicanery.”

Goshen game: “We came out on fire and played really good football in the first quarter. We were ahead 21-0 and feeling pretty good about things. The wheels kind of fell off … We had blown coverages that should not be happening … His kids had not played much football to date. That’s why they played the No. 1’s at the end of the game.



Wawasee coach Jon Reutebuch:

On Warsaw: “Bart Curtis has a long history of building programs and he already has this one on solid ground. They have some really good athletes and they are fundamentally-sound … The run the flex bone which offers its own challenges and we’re going to have to find a way to stop that … “

Defense: “For the most part, we fly to the football pretty well. We’re fairly quick. We’ve kept it simple for them so they can just read and react. That’s worked well for us … Thanks to our defensive line play, our linebackers — Dominic Blair, Nathan Larson and Robert Schmucker — have all looked pretty good. Also, safety Kameron Salazar and defensive end Justin Castro.”

Plymouth game: “We dug ourselves in a hole right off the bat by turning the ball over on the first two series (missed hand-off and fumbled snap) after we had moved the ball pretty well. Once again, our offensive lack of production has put our defense in a hole … (Jake Reichard) is really, really good athlete and we had a hard time tackling.”

Maconaquah (2-2 overall, 2-2 TRC)

at Tippecanoe Valley (4-2, 4-1)

When: Friday, 7 p.m., Smith-Bibler Memorial Field.

Series: Maconaquah leads 2-1.

Last meeting: Maconaquah won 24-3, Oct. 4, 2019.

Last Valley win: 29-13, Sept. 10, 1976.

John Harrell’s prediction: Valley, 31-21.

About Maconaquah: The Braves will be playing just their fifth game, having had a couple early ones canceled for COVID-related reasons. … Last year’s 24-3 Maconaquah win marked the first time the Braves and Valley met in the regular season since 1976. Maconaquah also prevailed 24-6 in a 2018 sectional semifinal. … Brave running back Carter Little has rushed for 403 yards and nine touchdowns on 93 carries. QB Nolan Kelly is 26-of-42 throwing for 387 yards with two TDs and two picks. … The Maconaquah defense has notched 12 takeaways in four games and 31 tackles for loss, including eight by Garrett Spohn. … All four Brave opponents so far are teams Valley has already played as well. The Vikings own the better result against each common foe, albeit just slightly so in two of those instances. … Maconaquah is in its first season under Brad Purcell, a longtime Indianapolis area assistant who succeeded Austin Colby (16-6 in two years before leaving for Kokomo).

About Valley: The Vikings’ 57-24 win last week over Whitko marked the third straight game they’ve cracked 50 points, matching the 1979 state title team for most consecutive in program history. … Valley trailed 15-6 through one quarter and the contest was knotted at 18-all late in the second before the Vikings pulled away. … Two-way standout Alex Craft did some of everything, scoring three touchdowns (two by ground, one by air), picking up a pair of two-point conversions, making an interception and adding a sack. He’s at a team-leading six sacks on the season and a team-leading 484 yards rushing on 62 carries (7.8 average) with eight TDs. … Junior QB Branson McBrier is 47-of-76 throwing for 944 yards and 14 TDs — five of those last week — against two picks, while junior wideout Rex Kirchenstien has 15 catches for 402 yards and five scores.

Valley coach Steve Moriarty:

On last week — “After two (lopsided) wins, and with that second one being Bell week, a very emotional week, we didn’t come ready to play right off the bat, but we kind of woke up the second half and were able to focus. Our passing game was able to open up our running game. We had about 270 yards passing (273) and still well over 200 rushing (245), so whenever you can have that balance, it puts the defense in a bind.”

On Maconaquah — “They’ve still got a lot of returning starters, even though it’s a different offense and defense. Little’s one of the best backs, if not the best, we’ll play this year. All-stater last year, runs hard. They also complete over 60% of their passes, but if we can stop Little, we’ll have a good shot. Their defense is almost like a 3-3, a unique defense. They’ll make sure you have to be able to run the ball to beat them. We’ll have to run well inside the tackles because they do a good job covering the pass.”

On injuries — “(Running back Braden Shepherd, sidelined since a Week 1 shoulder injury) is still out, but more like day to day now. Not sure if he’ll return this week, but he is getting better.”



Whitko (3-3 overall, 2-3 TRC)

at Manchester (2-4, 2-3)

When: Friday, 7 p.m., Burk Field.

Series: Whitko leads 33-15.

Last meeting: Manchester won 14-0, Oct. 4, 2019.

Last Whitko win: 46-28, Sept. 28, 2018.

John Harrell’s prediction: Manchester, 35-31.

About Whitko: Propelled by Gavin Ness’ 90-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to start the game, the Wildcats jumped to a 15-6 lead through one quarter last week against Tippecanoe Valley, and tied the contest at 18-all late in the second period on an Austin Kreps 33-yard field goal, but the Vikings dominated henceforth for a 57-24 win. … On the season, junior Cade Berg is both the Cats’ leading rusher (388 yards on 66 carries, five TDs) and leading receiver (371 yards on 17 catches, four TDs) He’s also pacing the defense at 45 tackles. … Junior quarterback Ethan Schuh is 57-of-112 throwing for 1,087 yards with 10 touchdowns and seven interceptions. … Whitko stands 2-0 on the road.

About Manchester: The Squires are expected to be without injured star running back Braxton Ream for a second straight game after losing 54-13 last week to Class 1A No. 3-ranked Southwood. Manchester fell behind 14-0 in the opening minute due in part to a opening-series turnover out of punt formation and the first of two straight successful onside kicks by the Knights. … On the season, sophomore QB Brock Casper is 58-of-117 passing for 954 yards with 10 touchdowns against six picks. Receiver Seth Gaerte is at 23 catches for 443 yards and five TDs. Ream ran for 888 yards over the season’s first four games before being injured in the opening quarter of Week 5. … Dylan Stroud and Peyton Addair were in on 11 tackles apiece against Southwood. Stroud leads the Squires on the season with 60 tackles and Addair in TFLs at five.

Whitko coach Phil Jensen:

On last week — “It was 34-24 in the fourth quarter and we’ve got the ball, and chose to go for it (on fourth-and-4) from our own 40, and took a 15-yard sack, but trying to get within one score in the fourth quarter against a very good team, we were in it to that point. But once it went south, it really went south. Their size and athleticism wore us out.”

On Manchester — “They’re similar to us. They’ve played some really good teams. They don’t have a lot of depth in their upper classes, which is similar to us, but they have a lot of young guys. They like to spread it out, and they run a 3-4, so again, a lot of similarities.”

On injuries — “(Starting safety Blayne Stump, after missing two games with a severe ankle sprain) played a handful of plays last week, and should be fully ready this week. (Starting linebacker Grayson Ulshafer, out since Week 4), he’s gotta have surgery, torn meniscus, but everyone else (as of Tuesday), we’re as healthy as we’ve been.”



Manchester coach Alyx Brandewie:

On last week — “We started about as poorly as you can start. We gave up 14 points in the first 59 seconds and two onside kicks in the process, but I was proud of the way we responded. When you play a team as capable and sound as Southwood, you just can’t afford to start like we did.”

On Whitko — “There are a lot of similarities. I think with both teams, you can see the improvement. In their case, they’re far and away better than a year ago, and probably far better now than earlier in the year. We know we’ve got a challenge against a team that’s young and developing and building.”

On injuries — “(Ream’s) out again this week. The hope is we’ll be able to get him back next week, but he has a bad bruise on his shoulder, and we want to be careful with the tendons and ligaments on his growth plate. We want to be very cautious. … Other than Braxton, (as of Tuesday night), we’re pretty healthy.”



Triton (3-2, 2-1 HNAC)

at North Judson (5-1, 3-1)

When: Friday, 7:30 p.m., Liberty Field, North Judson.

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

John Harrell’s prediction: North Judson, 31-17.

Last meeting: Oct. 4, 2019, North Judson 13-6.

Last time Triton won: Sept. 28, 2018, 37-29.

About Triton: Coach Rodney Younis’ Trojans lost 48-6 to Pioneer Sept. 25 … Triton’s TD was produced by Hunter Mcintyre (run) … Season leaders include McIntyre (67 carries for 341 yards and three TD’s), Trace Schuh (46 totes for 238 yards and four TD’s) and Anthony Schuh (29 runs for 226 yards and four TD’s) in rushing, Cole Shively (10-of-29 for 141 yards and two TD’s) in passing and Lucas Cabrera (four catches for 95 yards and two TD’s) in receiving … Topping in in total tackles are Jeremiah Farrell (46), Caleb Lemler (29), Nate Amsden (25 with three sacks) and Shively (23). Amari Snyder has a team-best two interceptions … Triton averages 18.2 points per game on offense and 25.8 on defense.

About North Judson: Coach Brett Lambert’s Bluejays downed Culver Academy 23-20 … North Judson TD’s were scored by Cheyenne Allen (kick return), Eli Blount (catch) and Trey Hampton (run). Blount also intercepted three passes … Season leaders are Allen (62 carries for 435 yards and five TD’s), Hampton (59 attempts for 290 yards and five TD’s) and Eli Blount (35 runs for 272 yards and two TD’s) in rushing, Hampton (27-of-59 for 472 yards and five TD’s) in passing and Kason Sanchez (nine catches for 200 yards and one TD) and J.J. Blount (five receptions for 127 yards and two TD’s) in receiving … Pacing in total tackles are Dylan Marin (55), Owen Frasure (53) and J.J. Blount (48) … The Bluejays’ lone loss came Sept. 11 against Knox (14-0) Sept. 26 … North Judson averages 33.2 points per game on offense and 12.3 on defense.

Triton coach Rodney Younis:

On North Judson: “They’re playing really well. They’re very aggressive. They fly around to the ball on defense. They run an option offense. We’re going to have to be very disciplined to help contain them … It doesn’t matter what type of offense (the opponent) is running, your defense always needs to play assignment football and worry about their responsibility and trust their teammates to take care of their responsibilities.“

Defense: “Nate Amsden, Caleb Lemler, Cam Fairfield and Cam Shively. Those four guys upfront have been the key to our defense. Jeremiah Farrell at middle linebacker has really stepped up and played well this year, too.”

Pioneer game: “We’re not at their level yet. They’re a really good program. They run their offense very well. They’re very football-savvy. They know how to make adjustments on their own on the field … Bottom line is upfront, they beat us. That’s where you win and lose games is upfront.”