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Nine area schools hope to take next postseason step

Messenger photo by Britt Kudla Caden Larson of Southeast Valley makes a play against Pocahontas Area in Pocahontas during the regular season.

After a week of recovering from the regular season, district champions Southeast Valley and Webster City will make their 2020 playoff debuts on Friday night.

Both the fifth-ranked (Class 1A) Jaguars (7-0 overall) and No. 6 (3A) Lynx (7-0) will have home games in the second round after earning byes in the opening week.

Nine Messenger-area schools remain in the hunt, with seventh-rated (1A) South Central Calhoun (6-1), Greene County (6-2), ninth-ranked (1A) Emmetsburg (6-1) and No. 9 (eight-man) Newell-Fonda (7-1) all playing at home and looking to make the round of 16.

After this round of action, the pods will be reset for the round of 16 and quarterfinals. The semifinals and finals will then have the final shift at the UNI-Dome in Cedar Falls next month.

Belmond-Klemme (3-4) at No. 5 Southeast Valley (7-0)

Coach Mike Swieter used the bye week to help clean things up for his team and heal the bumps and bruises.

This is a rematch from Week 3, where the Jaguars earned a 36-20 victory. Junior quarterback Kolson Kruse threw for 159 yards and three scores, while rushing for 100 yards. Junior Kaleb Scott had touchdown catches, and classmate Colton Brandt had one score.

Junior Lathe Muench had a rushing touchdown.

On the season, Kruse has thrown for 845 yards and 10 touchdowns, while running for 479 and eight scores. Muench has 12 TDs on the ground.

Scott has three touchdown grabs, while junior Tre Fisher, senior Sam Hanson, and Brandt have two touchdowns each.

Junior Tate Sander has rushed for 899 yards and 12 touchdowns for the Broncos. Senior Jordan Meyer has ran for six scores.

Mason City (3-3) at No. 6 Webster City (7-0)

For the second straight season, senior Trey Mathis has run all over Class 3A competition. This year, Mathis has rushed for 1,143 yards and 14 touchdowns. In his career, Mathis has 2,476 yards and 39 touchdowns.

Quarterback Chase Rattenborg has 585 yards on the ground and seven scores, while sophomore CJ Hisler has five TDs of his own.

For the Mohawks, Ben Amundson (384) and Connor Dalen (370) are the leading rushers, with five and two touchdowns, respectively.

Quarterback Kale Hobart has thrown for 667 yards and three scores.

Webster City routed Mason City during the regular season, 42-7.

Dike-New Hartford (6-2) at No. 7 South Central Calhoun (6-1)

The Titans had a strong opening-round performance, beating Sioux Central 46-7. Senior Cole Corey threw for two touchdowns, while five different backs ran for touchdowns.

On the season, Corey has thrown for 747 yards and seven scores. Blake McAlister has 721 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns, while Corey has eight rushing touchdowns.

In the first round, Dike-New Hartford knocked off Jesup, 41-6. Quarterback Nathan Moore has thrown for 892 yards and 11 TDs. Senior Drew Larson has rushed for 1,202 yards and 15 scores.

Humboldt (5-3) at Spencer (5-2)

In the first round, it was junior Caden Matson and senior Gabe Gidel who stole the show. Matson threw for 233 yards and three touchdowns, while rushing for 165 yards and three scores.

Giden caught four ball for 146 yards and two TDs.

Matson has the chance to reach his second 1,000-yard plateau on the season. He has thrown for 1,320 yards and 11 touchdowns. Entering the game against the Tigers, Matson has 932 yards rushing yards and 16 TDs.

Senior Jon Nissen is the groundhog for the Tigers, running for 783 yards and nine touchdowns. Quarterback Jackson DeWitt has run for five scores.

Other area playoff games: Algona (4-3) at No. 8 Estherville Lincoln Central (6-1); Clarinda (4-4) at Greene County (6-2); Carroll Kuemper (2-6) at No. 9 Emmetsburg (6-1); East Sac County (3-5) at No. 1 Ida Grove OABCIG (7-0); Kingsley-Pierson (4-4) at No. 9 Newell-Fonda (7-1).

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