No. 7 ELC ready for another Friday night
Midgets host Cherokee
After getting an unexpected Friday night off, Class 2A No. 7 Estherville Lincoln Central prepares for its regular season finale against Cherokee this week.
A week ago, ELC players were boarding the bus ready to head to Algona when they received information that the Bulldogs were forced to cancel the game due to COVID-19 cases.
The Midgets now host a Cherokee team this Friday that has only played three games this season due to coronavirus cases on the team.
Cherokee (1-2) opened the season with a 21-7 win over Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn/Remsen-Union, then lost 27-7 to Ridge View. The Braves opened district play with a 41-0 loss to Garner-Hayfield-Ventura.
In three games, Cherokee has 270 rushing yards on 95 carries with Cael Wood accounting for most of that. He has 44 carries for 258 yards and two touchdowns. Quarterback Lee Pingel is 20-of-42 passing for 198 yards and one touchdown.
“They’re a spread team on offense and have a three-man front on defense,” said ELC coach Ryan Rezac of the Braves, adding that they run schemes that the Midgets have seen previously.
“We’re just trying to secure the things that we want to do and be ready to hit on all cylinders when the playoffs start next week,” Rezac said. “We’re excited to play another game on Friday night.”
ELC has had more success passing this season than rushing.
Ryan Schiltz is 65-of-120 for 911 yards with 16 touchdowns to four interceptions. His top target is cousin Matt Christensen, who has 26 catches for 430 yards with six touchdowns. But Schiltz has many other options including Daryl Jensen (13 rec. 228 yards, 5 TDs), Lamont Whiting (11 rec. 110 yards, 2 TDs), and Kevin Egeland (8 rec. 125 yards, 3 TDs). Six other players have caught at least one pass.
Zavion McMurran leads ELC’s ground attack with 257 yards and six touchdowns on 47 carries while Schiltz has 55 carries for 11 yards, Garrett Paulson has 21 carries for 113 yards and Whiting has 14 carries for 98 yards.
Zack Anderson leads ELC’s defense with 31 tackles while Paulson has 28 and McMurran has 24.5
Cael Woods leads Cherokee’s defense with 18 tackles.