Wednesday, October 23, 2019

City Rivalry - Chesty Lions vs. Firebirds

Have you ever wondered what a rivalry looks like on paper? It looks a lot different on Friday nights for sure, but here is a historical snippet of the Chesty Lions vs. Firebirds Football rivalry from day one in 1997 to the end of this 2019 decade of play. These two have never met in post-season play in the old playoff (District) format that ended in 2015. It is possible to happen with both schools in the 6A-West bracket down the road, as they are 0-3 in the new format starting in 2016 to 2018.

For the first time in many seasons, Bob Lisher and Dirk Wedd will no longer be patrolling the sidelines of battle for defending the City of Lawrence, KS bragging rights. This game usually closes out the Fall regular sports season in preparation for post-season play and has since it's earliest of days. This benchmark Football game sets the tone for the Chesty Lions and Firebirds in all Fall, Winter, and Spring sports.

As the 2019 season closes out, both Steve Rampy (Blue Valley Tigers/Pitt State Gorillas) and Kevin Stewart (formerly AC at BV North) have now been chosen to take the reigns of this rivalry which is now in it's 23rd meeting all-time.

For the breakdown itself, this is how it is maintained: 97-8 (1997) week-8 is how the year is recorded for a quick reference point whenever an email or someone has a question throughout the season via @Twitter or any other form of social media. L = Loss, W = Win. 1-0 etc. is the running record for either school. * = 2016-2019 new playoff format.

This is also maintained in a similar fashion for the Olathe North Eagles vs Olathe South Falcons, and Bishop Miege Stags vs. ST Aquinas Saints on a local level.

The research is quality, and if it is never found in the average High School yearbook, the next way to hunt down the information is the local microfilm of the newspapers from specific era's, decade's etc to verify a final score, sometimes which can be misrepresented in a high school yearbook, or not even included many times depending on where the search leads.

Bob Lisher (14-8, 22, 636)
F          Opp.    LFS     Final              LAW

vs. Dick Purdy (0-2, 2, 000)                
97-8     L            0-1     15 – 34            1-0                                          
98-9     L            0-2     24 – 28            2-0                                                                   
vs. Dirk Wedd (6-13, 19, 315)                         
99-9     W           1-2     31 – 28  – OT  2-1                                                                   
00-8     L            1-3       0 – 35            3-1                  
01-8     W           2-3     16 – 0              3-2                              
02-8     L            2-4     26 – 42            4-2                                                                  
03-8     L            2-5       6 – 21            5-2                                                       
04-8     W           3-5     14 – 12            5-3                                                       
05-8     L            3-6     28 – 33            6-3
06-8     W           4-6     49 – 15            6-4                              
07-8     W           5-6     27 – 0              6-5                                                       
08-8     W           6-6     21 – 13            6-6
09-8     W           7-6     42 – 14            6-7
10-9     W           8-6     42 – 20            6-8                              
11-9     L            8-7       0 – 20            7-8      
12-9     W           9-7     28 – 22            7-9
13-9     W         10-7     28 – 10            7-10
14-3     W         11-7     31 – 12            7-11                
15-3     L          11-8     12 – 14            8-11                
16-8*   W         12-8     56 – 7              8-12    
17-8*   W         13-8     24 – 21            8-13                
vs. Steve Rampy (0-1, 1, 000+)                                   
18-8*   W         14-8     28 – 13            8-14                                                     
Kevin Stewart (0-0, 1, 000+)
19-8*   x          14-8+   00 – 00            8-14+ 

Thank you to former LJW Sports writer, Bobby Nightengale for providing some information that was missing at an earlier date in 2017. 

             

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

SFL & EKL Week-8

10/25 

LVP @ SMN @ SMN - SMN leads the series 19-10
* In a series that has taken place since 1981, the Indians have dominated the gridiron since the Pioneers left the Centennial League in 1980. Now that this is a non-conference game, the Indians will be up for this match in which they commanded from the start in a big win in 2018. We will see what happens and if the Indians can climb out of the cellar against the Pioneers who are 2-5 under first year Head Coach Sean Sachen.

GET @ SMW @ SMS - GET leads the series 1-0
* In another series with very little history, the Trailblazers will look to continue their recent success against the Vikings. For the Vikings on the other hand, coming out strong and getting a big home win would be a huge accomplishment against the very talented Trailblazers. Time will tell, with the experience on the field, and if the Vikings can pull of a huge upset.

OEH @ OSF - OEH leads the series 16-15
* Outside of the Olathe North vs. Olathe South rivalry, the Hawks and Falcons are part of an intense setting of their own. From 2000 to 2009 and 2010 to 2018 they have managed to swap a couple wins, and losses here and there throughout the years. There has not been a true winning streak lasting more than three to four wins for either, and then the losing school winning two in a row. Since 2010, the Falcons are 7-4 in 11 games played. The Hawks won four straight from 2014 to 2016, and the Falcons got two back in 2017 and 2018.

OWO @ SME @ SMS - SME leads the series 1-0
* For many of the Owls first few years, building a history with their opponents will be able to tell and learn more about them. With the game on the road at SM South, it will be tough outside of the CBAC/ODAC home fields of play. The Owls having played very well these last few weeks will look to make a big impression on the Lancers as they continue to form their program's identity.

LFS @ LAW @ LAW - LFS leads the series 14-8
* For the first time ever in this series, the Chesty Lions and Firebirds will be led out on to the field by different names not named: Bob Lisher, and Dirk Wedd. These two counterparts/colleagues have since retired leaving the series in the good hands now of Steve Rampy and Kevin Stewart. The Firebirds have dominated the "City Rivalry" for a long time and the Chesty Lions will look to change that in due time. While it will not happen over night, this will continue to be great well in to the next decade and beyond for future generations of Lawrence, KS student-athletes to have the honor to play on Friday nights.

ONE @ ONW - ONE leads the series 13-2
* In a series of series, which at one time was thought to be a rivalry. Is not. Simply put, once Olathe Northwest became Varsity full-time in 2004, the Olathe North Eagles had a job to do. With both programs having multiple changes since that time, the Eagles have stayed true to form in this series from the start. Only two times in the series 15 games has Olathe North lost. Those seasons being 2006 and 2011. With the Ravens coming off a big OT-win, defeating the Eagles will not be an easy task ahead. Olathe North will look to solidify a spot in the top-8 seeds, while the Ravens will look to improve out of the bottom four seeds.

SMS @ SMW @ SMN - SMW leads the series 36-22-1
* A tight, very close historical series, the Raiders, and Vikings will match up to close out the regular season. DYK, both of these schools do the same for many spring sports in the #512 sports rivalry? It is done quite often! Since 2010, the Raiders are 2-7 vs. the Vikings, and have since won back-to-back games in 2017 and 18. Can the Raiders win a third? Time will tell once kickoff begins.

BVT @ BVW - BVT leads the series 14-5
* Rivalry? Absolutely. On the gridiron? Not so much. Do not let those numbers deter you, as many of those 14 wins are split between Steve Rampy (Lawrence Chesty Lions) and Eric Driskell (deceased) taking on the Jaguars. The West Jaguars have struggled most of this series from the out-set of kickoff, and it has not been easy. Driskell-Terrill series has won 8 of the last 10 games since 2010, and the only wins for West came in 2012 and 2013. This could be a great game to watch, and see if the Jaguars can end their six game losing streak dating back to the 2013 season.

BVN @ SJA - BVN leads the series 1-0
* In only their second game it will be a tough call to what will happen. Can the Thunder get the win? With BV North's Graham Mertz having graduated, this will be an opportune night to make the series even and come out with a win for a better seed in the 5A-East bracket. BV North will be looking to do the same at 2-4 in the 6A-East.

BMS @ BNW - BNW leads the series 15-9
* DYK? This is a rare series that the Bishop Miege Stags do not lead in on a local level. Having won four straight in 13-14-15-18, this has been made a series for sure but the Stags experience will be tough to contain a young Huskies Football team. Coming off a big win over the Mustangs, the Huskies will give the Stags offense its best from the start, and will have to stop one of the best offenses in the county. As for the Stags, their last loss to the Huskies was in Jon Holmes' first season 2012.

MVJ @ BSW - MVJ leads the series 4-0
* Since this series began, the Jaguars have had no problem with the T-Wolves on the gridiron. That being said, the T-Wolves will be looking to end a losing streak and improve on their 5A-East seed as well. It will not be an easy task, as the Jaguars are a strong Football program, and have given the #229 a lot of hard work and planning during their brief time in the EKL.

LAN @ SHT - Series tied 2-2
* The Lions and Thunderbirds will be squaring off for the fifth time. The Lions, having a great season so far, and mirroring the 2018 season are meeting all expectations. As for the 5A-East bracket, at 4-3, they are playing their best football to land a top-8 seed and a possible home-game for week-9.

STA - Bye

Monday, October 21, 2019

Action - Reaction #7

What a week. Seed hunting.

Where to begin is a good question? With the fast and furiousness of the Lawrence Chesty Lions or the first win of 2019 Olathe Northwest Ravens?

From top to bottom, the league is a tale of two heads. Leading the way, the Lawrence and Olathe School Districts, and the SMSD trailing away with four of the seven at the rear of the standings.

For the Chesty Lions, a return to the fray since their 2015 season of (10-1) is very promising. Their opportunities along the way and paired with Derby will be a great separation of the bracket in the west. More than likely, a 2-4th seed will land them in a great position.

Of the SMSD #512 games, it was a disappointing 1-4 record with the Vikings coming away with their second win, and a strong showing up against a young SM North Indians. For the Northwest Cougars, things did not get easier, with a big road game at Gardner-Edgerton. The Trailblazers won out easily over the Cougars and displayed a great home field advantage many schools would love to boast of. To round out the losses, the SM East Lances struggled to get the offense going against a big Free State Firebirds team that is doing very well under new Head Coach Kevin Stewart.

On the EKL side, the ST Aquinas Saints, defeated the Bishop Miege Stags for the outright league win. ST Aquinas leads the series all-time now at 18-16 after 34 games dating back to their first meeting in the Fall of 1989 week-4.

Jaguars. There are a lot of them. Both at Mill Valley and Blue Valley West. This time however, the Jaguars of Blue Valley West under fourth year Head Coach Josh Korkenmeier are having one of their finest seasons to date. The 2014 West Jaguars last finished with a winning record of 5-4 in the schools 14th season by former Head Coach Scott Wright.

The BV Northwest Huskies won a big EKL league game, and first since the 2017 season. For the BV North Mustangs having a rare down season in recent years with the loss of QB Graham Mertz to graduation is evident on the field. Can this win for the Huskies carry over past week-8? We shall see.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

SFL & EKL Week-7

10/18

OEH @ PIT @ PIT - PIT leads the series 1-0
* For the second time around, the Purple Dragons will take on the Hawks. However, this season will be on the road at Pittsburg. Already with some help from fellow Johnson County Blue Valley North in week-3, the Mustangs defeated the Purple Dragons. Last week they were shutout 31-0 to the Mill Valley Jaguars.

While the Hawks lost a close game in 2018, the Sunflower League and EKL both fell victim on the scoreboard against a great 8-2 Dragons team led by long time Head Coach Tom Nickelson currently sitting at 4-2. Fortunately for both the Mustangs and Hawks, they will not meet again as the Dragons will be in the 4A-East bracket.

SMW @ SMN @ SMN - SMW leads the series 33-22
* Can the Vikings come away with a win? It can be done. Can the Indians do the same thing? Of course. The young Indians have a chance to continue to win under Zach Rampy and force their hand to gain a higher seed come week #9. For the young Indians, this has not been an easy season and will look to score some points and come away with a big win. For the Vikings, this will not be an easy game as well, as they too are looking to solidify a better seeding as the regular season winds down.

OSF @ OWO - OSF leads the series 1-0
* With the Owls on a late hot streak winning their last three games, the Falcons will have their work cut out for them. Now that season two is under way, the Owls are starting to build their identity and find their niche as a Varsity program. For the Falcons, this will not be an easy game, and should not be taken lightly due to the final couple weeks. Although sitting at 2-4, bringing their experience will be a factor, but the Owls will do what they can to come away with a victory.

SME @ LFS - LFS leads the series 9-6
* Entering the 2019 season, change taking place with the Firebirds. First year Head Coach Kevin Stewart will see the Lancers again from the opposite sidelines and no longer from BV North. The Firebirds will continue to strike their dominance over the Lancers as they have in recent seasons. For geographical purposes after week-8, there is always a possible chance of meeting in the post-season. The Firebirds could come away with a big win as the Lancers have struggled to get going in the right direction. For SM East to come away with a win, a lot will have to work in their favor in a very tough environment at Free State.

LAW @ ONE @ ODAC - ONE leads the series 22-13
* Of perhaps one of the biggest league match ups in the season, the mighty Eagles of Olathe North will take on the Rampy Chesty Lions entering the contest at 6-0, coming off a 1-8 season in 2018. Both programs have great running games, and this could possibly be a very high scoring contest, or quite the opposite a very low one. Last week Arland Bruce IV worked his magic against the SM East defense as part of an offense scoring 77 overall points.

ONW @ SMS @ SMS - ONW leads the series 8-2
* In a rare series that the Ravens own outright, it will take everything they have to come out strong against a very talented Raiders Football team. Although the Raiders are 2-4, do not be deceived by the talent that is on the field. Both offensively and defensively the Ravens will have to play strong from the start. Can the Raiders reverse this fortune of play? Quite possibly. If so, should the Raiders come away with a rare win against the Ravens, this will help in their seeding for the 6A-East bracket.

SMW @ GET @ GET - GET leads the series 2-0
* For only the third time ever, the Trailblazers and Vikings will meet. This again will not be easy as the Vikings have struggled for the last couple years. For Ryan Cornelson, and his Blazers, they will do everything they can to get on the scoreboard quick and take care of business. As for the Vikings, the Blazers offense is fast and talented, and will have to be minimized. It will not be easy, but the Vikings have certainly improved from their 17 and 18 seasons.

MVJ @ BVT - BVT leads the series 3-1
* While only four games in to their brief history, the Jaguars have struggled against the Tigers. With two very good coaching staffs on the sidelines coaching against each other, there will be a lot to look forward to from the start. The Tigers have been strong after a rare quick exit in 2018, while the Jaguars are picking up steam after a 1-3 start. The last two seasons have seen the Jaguars go 1-1 against the Tigers and will look again to steal a big road win in a great Football environment at Blue Valley.

BNW @ BVN - BNW leads the series 15-11
* Husky win? Too early or too late? The opportunity is there for the Huskies to make a big statement and a possible second win late in the season. With time winding down, the chance to take on a struggling Mustangs team and the loss of Graham Mertz to graduation, this could be a statement game, and a movement game in the 6A-East standings. While this will not be easy, the Mustangs, have dominated the Huskies winning five straight since 2015. The 2014 Huskies were the last team to defeat the Mustangs in regular season play.

BSW @ BVW - BVW leads the series 6-3
* This season is the 10th year of the SW T-Wolves Football program, and already making their mark, are hoping to find a way to upset the West Jaguars. At one time, both found themselves as the new kids to the block on the #229 Football scene. Coach Josh Korkenmeier's Jaguars have found themselves in a position that they have not been in many recent years. The T-Wolves, themselves, will have to play a strong game for this very talented Jaguars offense.

TUR @ LAN - LAN leads the series 9-6
* Since the start of the 2000 season, these two have met 15 times. For the last couple years the Golden Bears have struggled, but have worked their butts off in a tough 5A East. Last week with the closing of their final home game at a field they played on for 84 seasons, a road game to the new Lansing Football field will not be easy. Can the Golden Bears get the win? Of course they can, but it will take a lot of discipline and tough defense to steal a road win. The last two meetings against Olathe West have not made it easy, but with Julien Parks leading the way, the Golden Bears have a strong history and start ahead of them.

BSB @ LVP - BSB leads the series 1-0
* In only their second series game, the Bobcats and Rod Stallbaumer, will look to begin a streak of winning over their neighbor to the north of the Pioneers. With the experience and strength of the Bobcats offense, the Pioneers will have a lot on their plates defensively to step up big.

STA @ BMS - STA leads the series 17-16
* Catholic Showdown Week. The Stags and Saints will meet at Dixon Doll Stadium once again, only this time, the Saints leading the series by one game. These two Football programs have had great games since the series began in the Fall of 1989. To date, Jon Holmes' tenure against the Saints is 6-2, while Randy Dreiling is 1-4 in five meetings vs. Holmes' Stags since the 2014 season, and first in Kansas City after leaving Hutchinson after 17 seasons.

SJA @ KMC - KMC leads the series 1-0
* Crusading in to 2019. While the Thunder did fall to KMC in 2018, this is a great time to get a non-conference win under their belt before week-9 comes rather quickly as the season winds down. For the Thunder, their 3-3 record is far improved, and with KMC struggling to 1-5, this non-conference match up before seeding takes place will be a huge improvement in these last couple weeks of regular season play.

Monday, October 14, 2019

Action - Reaction #6

After a brief chill has taken over the metro area on Friday nights, the ending of regular season play is very near.

In a game of Basketball magnitude, the Olathe North Eagles defeated the SM East Lancers 77-49 at SM North. At the half it was 42-42, with 84 total points scored, which stands as a team high for both programs at halftime going in to the third quarter. Giving credit to both offenses, the Lancers in the previous week did not have too many good offensive drives against the Raiders, and with Mother Nature taking charge most of the game. However, Arland Bruce IV was on fire from the start with 6 touchdowns on the night against the Lancer defense.

The Lancers will take to the road against a talented Free State Firebirds led by first year Head Coach Kevin Stewart. Free State has won four straight after starting 1-1 against the Owls, and losing a tough week-2 game to the Olathe East Hawks.

For what has seemed like a quiet and off the record 4-2 start, the Olathe East Hawks are doing the dirty work both offensively and defensively off the radar. While struggling in losses to the Eagles, and Gardner-Edgerton, the team has played well knocking off both SM North and SM West in back-to-back weeks. With a non-conference game ahead against the Pittsburg Purple Dragons (0-2) against Johnson County foes Mill Valley and Blue Valley North only scoring three total points, this will give the Hawks a chance to play a very good 4-2 team. Pittsburg has been unaffiliated with a league since the 2016 season when they exited the Southeast Kansas League.

This week the Chesty Lions will take on the Olathe North Eagles for an opportunity to take the Sunflower League outright prior to week-8. The Chesty Lions will look to do some magic in a tough environment which has belonged to Olathe North for nearly four decades at the ODAC Football field. It has been very rare, and hard for most any road teams historically to get a win on the Olathe field.

Other action for the highly talented offense of the SM Northwest Cougars again firing on all cylinders at the Olathe Northwest Ravens. Although allowing 20 points, the scoring machine has been fierce and positive for the Bo Black offensive line, and his defense, which has improved a lot as time has progressed these last two seasons. For the first time in the new playoff format, the Cougars will be fighting for and to remain a top four seed in the 6A-East.

At the bottom of the league standings the SM North Indians and Olathe Northwest Ravens will continue to look for a way to get a win to help them from playing a possible 1 or 2 seeded 6A game.

On the other side of the local coin, the annual Catholic Showdown will proceed on the grounds of Bishop Miege where the Saints will look to play tough on the road. Both teams are coming up off of big wins. The Stags defeated Blue Valley, while Saints only defeated the Thunder by a touchdown in one of their closest games of the season. To date, the Saints lead the series 17-16 and will have to start with some fire to take on Jon Holmes Stags. The following week, the Saints will take a bye in to week-9 with potentially a second 12 game season should the Saints advance to the 5A State Final to close out this decade of play.

 

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Are you ready for 2020 & 2021 Post-season play?

Released by the @KSHSAA on 10-9-19, the post-season brackets for week-9 to 13 were posted.

Below will be the locally listed SFL/EKL schools and a touch more that will be seeing post-season foes for the next two Varsity Football seasons. For now, it is all a TBD as to how it will play out, and once the schedules are released by all local schools what can, could, or will happen once week-8 is complete.

One distinct, advantage of having SFL (3) High Schools in the west, is having a Johnson County (Gardner-Edgerton) a great addition to make some noise against the fellow west foes.

This brings up a question many may have about the Sunflower (EKL) leagues etc come post-season. Has one league ever faced itself in a State Final? At times it has happened in other team Kansas sports. This has happened multiple times in Men's and Woman's Basketball, and Woman's Soccer a handful of times since the mid to late 90s to modern day KSHSAA 2010 to 2019.

Unlike the AVCTL, to date, the Sunflower League is the only league to have faced each other in the early State Final games in Football post-season history. The SMSD #512 schools faced off against Wichita-East, and Southeast while the Topeka public schools did not see post-season play based on their records.

1971 - SM North 9 vs. SM West 6 - Week-11
1973 - SM South 28 vs. SM West 0  - Week-11

Gardner-Edgerton (3-3 in 2016 to 2018 in 6A east bracket) will join Lawrence (0-1), and Free State (7-3, three years in 6A-West).

6A - West

GET - Gardner-Edgerton - SFL
LAW - Lawrence Chesty - SFL
LFS - Free State - SFL

6A - East

JCH - JC Harmon - KCA
WYN - Wyandotte - KCA
OEH - Olathe East - SFL
ONE - Olathe North - SFL
ONW - Olathe Northwest - SFL
OSF - Olathe South - SFL
OWO - Olathe West - SFL
BVT - Blue Valley - EKL
BVN - BV North - EKL
BNW - BV Northwest - EKL
BVW - BV West - EKL
SME - SM East - SFL
SMN - SM North - SFL
SNW - SM Northwest - SFL
SMS - SM South - SFL
SMW - SM West - SFL

5A - East

BSW - BV Southwest - EKL
LVP - Leavenworth - UKC
STA - ST Aquinas - EKL

4A - East

BMS - Bishop Miege - EKL
LAN - Lansing - UKC
SJA - SJ Academy - EKL

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Week-6-2019 - 6

10/11

OWO @ TUR @ Turner - OWO leads the series 1-0
* Play for the Win. In the second game of this series, the Owls will look to come out firing on all cylinders from the start. For the young Golden Bears, facing an uphill battle against the young Varsity Owls will not be easy. Last year the Golden Bears were shutout and this time around will hope to score against a young team. For the Golden Bears, 2018 they managed to score 11 points per game and will do everything they can to gain control of the offensive side of the ball. Two of their nine 2018 games were shutouts: Olathe West, and De Soto.

OEH @ SMW - OEH leads the series 15-8
* One of the better match ups as of late was formerly OEH Jeff Meyers vs. the Vikings Tim Callaghan. Although both programs have since taken turns with a coaching turnover, and since 1992 have met five times in the post-season. Coming in to this decade, both have met on a minimal basis, due to the growth of school districts, and scheduling unbalanced, the Hawks lead the series 3-2 since the 2010 season. Back in 2011, both met in the playoffs with Olathe East coming away the winner. This will be Jesse Owen's third game in his five seasons with a 1-1 record, while Tim Callaghan is 6-6 in 12 total games dating to the 2003 season.

GET @ SMN - GET leads the series 1-0
* For two of the elder statesmen of Johnson County, the Indians and Trailblazers will meet for only the second time. The Trailblazers put up nearly 50 points in their first meeting, with a 48-20 home win. This time around, the Indians will look to repay the favor and get a road win. This will not be easy for the Indians, but success was in their favor as they were 3-2 on the road in 2018. The Indians are still looking for their first win of the season and it will not be an easy task.

LFS @ OSF - OSF leads the series 10-9
* While the series between the Firebirds and Falcons is relatively close, the Firebirds have won the last three meetings since the 2016 season and have shuttered the Falcons opportunities numerous times. With the game at ODAC, this gives the 2-3 Falcons a chance to steal back a win in an environment the program has been successful at winning at for years. The last two wins Olathe South had against Free State were the 2011, and 12 seasons, and did not meet at all from 2013 to 2015.

ONE @ SME - ONE leads the series 18-7
* While it is no secret, this has become a league rivalry in recent seasons, the Eagles have overwhelmingly taken the Lancers out of many games with ease. In 2018 both teams split the series at 1-1, with the Eagles moving on deep in to the playoffs only to fall to BV North in the Semi-Finals. For Justin Hoover's Lancers, carrying on 7-3 record against the Eagles since 2020 with some of their most impressive play coming in post-season. Look for these two, to possibly meet again come weeks 10 or 11 as they continue to play great football and representing the east side of the 6A bracket.

Prior to the 2012 season, the Eagles were 13-0 agains the Lancers when the Eagles arrived to the Sunflower League in the Fall of 1989. The Lancers are 6-2 against Olathe North since 2013.

SMS @ LAW - LAW leads the series 30-11
* These two Sunflower foes have been meeting since the Fall of 1968. Both Football teams in their "hey-dey" of success was littered with talent all over the field of play on offense and defense. Of their 41 games played, the Chesty Lions lead the series 3-0 all-time in post-season play having met in the late 80s and early 90s. Since 2000, the Raiders have struggled often against the Chesty Lions formerly led by Dirk Wedd and now in Steve Rampy's hands. South is 2-9 in 11 meetings including five straight losses from 2010 to 2014. The 2018 season, the Raiders came away with a big win, and will continue to work on that goal this week.

SNW @ ONW  - ONW leads the series 7-4
* The Northwest Cougars have been off to a fast start, and will continue to look for a top seed in post-season play. Since 2012, the Raven's have dominated and won five straight games. 12-13-14-15-18 are wins, while during the 2016 and 17 school years did not meet. Under second year leadership of Aaron Hafner, the team will look to steal another win away from the fast start Cougars. This will not be an easy task for the Raven's with the Cougars coming off a tough loss and working hard to get back to the winning column.

BVT @ BMS - BVT leads the series 26-17
* Of perhaps one of the greatest "rivalries" in the modern day EKL, that lends it hands to the pigskin classic of the Blue Valley Tigers, and Bishop Miege Stags. Of all Bishop Miege local opponents, the Tigers hold the keys to the kingdom of success in knocking off the Stags most recently this decade. Since 2010, the Tigers are 7-4 in 11 games played. Blue Valley is also 3-0 vs. the Stags in post-season play prior to the Stags move to 4A no longer making them a post-season opponent within their fellow league schools. With the recent Stags success, the team has won four of the last six regular season meetings in 2013-14-17 and 2018, with losses in 2015 and 2016. This will be a great game from the start as both have had recent success knocking off the Rockhurst Hawklets, our neighbors to the east on state line in consecutive weeks.

BVN @ BSW - BVN leads the series 6-3
* Upset to SWT? Can the Timber-Wolves make it happen? Can a local "Power" continue to slide in the standings? This time it is happening, and the T-Wolves have an opportunity to capitalize with the loss of talented Graham Mertz to the collegiate game. Will these be an easy task for a struggling team? It can be done, but it is far from easy in the EKL. For both schools, this will be their 10th all-time meeting since the T-Wolves began Varsity play in their initial season of 2010, unlike Olathe West and Olathe Northwest that began as JV, transitioning to Varsity the second year of the school opening.

BVW @ BNW - BNW leads the series 12-6
* Strangers? Not so much. These two have both meet regularly since the 2001 season when the Jaguars were grandfathered in to the EKL. The Huskies have led the series from day one, but have won the decade outright going 6-3 since the 2010 season. For the Jaguars and Huskies, taking care of the ball, and having plenty of discipline to not turn the ball over. Best of luck to both programs, as they will be working for a higher seed in the 6A east bracket.

LAN @ JCH - LAN leads the series 1-0
* Easy goings? In week-6, the Lions will meet the JC Harmon Hawks in their second meeting. While the Hawks have been struggling for most of this decade, they will look to defeat a very good Lions Football program hoping to continue on its rise to the 5A east brackets. JC Harmon can come away with a win, but it will take a lot of discipline to come out at home with a win.

SHT @ LVP - SHT leads the series 4-3
* In some recent, and rarely played games, the Heights Thunderbirds will take to the road facing the Pioneers. Last Fall the T-Birds posted 35 points, only allowing 20 for with a down Pioneers team. This series could return to 500 should Sean Sachen's Pioneers get on the board and play tough defense against a T-Birds team that finished at 5-5 last season.

PIT @ MVJ - MVJ leads the series 2-1
* One Up. The Jaguars led by Joel Applebee in his tenth season facing a strong Purple Dragons facing an up hill battle. For the Jaguars to continue, a non-conference break takes place before a meeting to close out the regular season with the Tigers and T-Wolves. In 2018, the both met with during the regular season and the Jags came away with the win. For the 2015 Jags, a playoff win came deep in to week-11 four years ago. Tom Nickerson will bring a team ready to play, as earlier in 2018 the Dragons defeated the Mustangs.

SJA @ STA - STA leads the series 4-0
* Big game. Although the Saints own the series 4 wins to zero, the Thunder will be looking to change that in a big road game to take on Randy Dreilling's 5A State Champions. This will not be easy, as the Thunder will want to continue to build from week to week and playing strong defense against the Saints flexbone. Look for the Saints to continue to steam ahead as the regular season comes to a close. Finding a spot in the top-four seeds will be a hitting point for the Saints on the field.