The two highest scoring teams in class 4A collide this evening in the second round of the high school football playoffs as third ranked Ames hosts number-nine Urbandale.
Both teams are averaging around 49 points per game and Ames coach Bruce Vertenan says it has been a difficult preparation for his defense. “Offensively Urbandale is quite unique, there is no team that plays like them,” Vertenan says. “Defensively there is some similarity, but the best you can do is to compare to someone you’ve played. But in the short weeks it comes down to relying on your fundamentals and your base stuff because you really don’t have a lot of time to add anything new
Veteran says the J-Hawks will be the most athletic team the Little Cyclones have faced. He says it’s not just talented receiver Allen Lazard, it’s the players across the field on the line and in the backfield that are talented.
Urbandale coach Sam Anderson says Ames is an explosive team. “Defensively they are an aggressive attacking defense that gets after you,” Anderson says. He says they have explosive players on offense with the leading rusher in the state, and a top quarterback and receivers. “So they are a force.”
The game may come down to which defense makes the most plays and which team makes the fewest mistakes. “YOu’ve got to take care of the football — that’s always the key point — and make the most of every opportunity that you have. From what I’ve seen they can score at will and they’re scoring fast too,” Anderson says.
Urbandale is 8-2. Ames is 10-0.
In class 2A, top ranked Carroll Kuemper is at home to play eighth ranked West Marshall. The Knights have used an outstanding defense to post a 10-0 mark.
Kuemper coach Chad Klein who says 9 of the 11 starters on defense are seniors who are comfortable with what they do. But he says they will be tested by West Marshall.
Kuemper won at West Marshall in the quarterfinal round of the playoffs last year.
West Marshall coach Ken Winkler says that is some motivation, but he says the biggest motivation is that it is a playoff game. He says this Kuemper team is even better than a year ago with “an outstanding group of skilled kids.”
Winkler says the Trojans need to limit big plays.
Class 2A ninth ranked Spirit Lake looks to avenge a regular season loss to sixth ranked Boyden-Hull/Rock-Valley for the second straight year. The Indians beat the Nighthawks in the playoffs a year ago enroute to the state title and Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley won this seasons regular season game back in week five.
Nighthawks coach Cory Brandt who says Spirit Lake will apply pressure in every facet. “On offense they are multiple, they can do many things,” he says.
Spirit Lake coach Josh Bolluyt says it will take a big effort to turn the tables after a 31-8 loss in the regular season.
Both teams are 9-1.
Also in class 2A, fourth ranked Sioux Center is at home against Central Lyon/George-Little-Rock. It is their second meeting in a little more than two weeks after Sioux Center won 35-0 back in week eight. “We’ve been extremely excited about trying to get to this game,”Central Lyon coach Toby Lorenzen says. He says they felt they played one of their worst games in that loss and are excited by the chance to turn that around.
Sioux Center coach Tim Van Regenmorter is not expecting a repeat. “Don’t kid yourself, it’s Cental Lyon, yeah we did bring our A game against them the first time — but it is Central Lyon and with their program and their coaching staff — they’ll be ready to play,” Regenmorter says.
Van Regenmorter says they will make some adjustments for this second meeting as he says both teams will look at the first game and see the things they did and didn’t do well and make adjustments.
Elwin Huffman, KOEL ,Oelwein/Doug Broek, KSOU ,Sioux Center also contributed to this story.