High school football’s regular season is about halfway done, at least in Idaho.
But it feels like just yesterday when the season started and questions had yet to be answered ... oh wait, that’s still the case.
The season has been a rollercoaster ride so far, and the car hasn’t gotten to the top of the hill.
Three games this week will have a huge impact on the Whitepine League Division I standings, the most competitive league in the area.
Here’s a look ahead to this week’s games:
Kendrick at Genesee
One team’s season is going exactly how it’s supposed to.
The other? Not so much.
For the third week in a row, Kendrick is the undisputed No. 1 in the 1A DII media poll, and for good reason. There doesn’t seem to be a real threat to the Tigers’ repeating as state champions.
Genesee is 1-2 and has struggled to put an entire game together despite having offensive talent like quarterback Angus Jordan.
“Our slow start comes down to our overall execution,” Bulldogs coach Justin Podrabsky said. “We’ve been battling minor things, whether that’s getting plays right on offense or gap responsibilities on defense. It’s the little details.”
Unfortunately for Genesee, it will be without Jordan for the game at 7 p.m. today after he left last week’s game against Troy with a shoulder injury. Wyatt Jordan, Angus’ brother, will be the starter.
The teams met almost a year ago, with the Bulldogs handing the Tigers their last loss, 24-22 on Oct. 22, 2021.
This year, the game has a different feel.
“We have to be able to control the ball,” Podrabsky said. “We need to have long drives on offense and we need to get a couple stops. We’re not at a point where we’ll win in a shoot out, we need to keep it low scoring and successfully run the football.”
Lapwai at Clearwater Valley
This one seems a bit personal.
During a preseason jamboree Aug. 19 in Kooskia, a Rams player issued a crackback block to a Wildcat defender, causing a stir between coaches, players and fans.
It’s been almost a month since and the two teams are in the mix for the league championship when they meet at 7 p.m. Friday in Kooskia.
“It happened. It is what it is,” Lapwai coach Josh Leighton said. “Now those calls will go toward personal foul calls and ejections. I just hope they fix their mentality.”
Clearwater Valley is a half-game behind Kamiah and Prairie for first place, with Lapwai another full game out in sixth.
The Rams won their first two games by a combined 18 points but lost their first game of the season this past week 62-22 to perennial Class 1A Division I state qualifier Notus in a nonleague affair.
“We’re going to have to stop the run,” Leighton said. “We did a good job against Timberline and if we did a better job against Kamiah, the outcome may of been different.”
Clearwater Valley’s offense goes through running back Bass Myers, who had 15 carries for 275 yards and four touchdowns Sept. 2 against Logos.
The Wildcats rebounded nicely after losing in their opener, winning 82-18 two weeks ago against 1A DII Timberline.
The offense is led by quarterback Terrel Ellenwood-Jones. He had 179 rushing yards and has a season total of 347, adding 393 yards through the air.
“He’s got better every week,” Leighton said. “It’s his team and he’s showing a lot of leadership with the offense.”
Council at Kamiah
The Kubs have a leg up in Whitepine League Division I play, along with the Pirates, but will step out of the league and host the Lumberjacks at 7 p.m. Friday.
“They’re a pretty solid team,” Kamiah coach Nels Kludt said. “They’re physical up front and can pass or run the ball whenever they want.”
The Lumberjacks are 2-1 thanks in large part to their defense, which held Lewis County out of the end zone at the end of last week’s 30-26 road win.
Four different players scored a touchdown against the Eagles.
Council’s offensive line seems to have some size, but so do the Kubs.
“That’s probably where the game is going to be won, to be honest with you,” Kludt said. “We have to run the ball against them and we have to stop the run on defense. It should be a great matchup.”
Pixley may be contacted at (208) 848-2290, firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @TreebTalks.