Prep Football

Class 1A football preview: Central at Carrollton

CentralŐs Chase Norfolk stiffarms a Beardstown defender during their game on Sept. 22. | H-W Photo/Jake Shane
Jake Shane 1|
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Nov. 3, 2017 1:10 am

Central vs. Carrollton

What: Class 1A second-round game; winner to play either Tuscola or Brown County in quarterfinals.

When: 1 p.m. Saturday.

Where: Carrollton High School, Carrollton, Ill.

Radio: WBBA 97.5 FM

Records: Central -- 8-2. Carrollton -- 9-1.

Coaches: Central -- Brad Dixon. Carrollton -- Nick Flowers.

Scouting the Hawks: Carrollton's Alex Bowker ran more than 60 yards to save a touchdown in the final seconds of last Saturday's first-round game against Madison, knocking Madison receiver Carl Moore out of bounds at the 7-yard line with 17 seconds left and the score tied at 28. He then blocked a field goal with 13 seconds left, and the Hawks won in overtime 36-34 as Madison failed to make its 2-point conversion after scoring a touchdown. Sophomore Hunter Flowers has completed 121 of 223 passes for 2,123 yards and 29 touchdowns, but he was 18 of 37 against Central in a 34-26 loss in Week 9. His favorite receiver is Nathan Walker, who has caught 46 passes for 947 yards and 11 touchdowns. Junior Bryon Holmes has rushed for 878 yards and 15 touchdowns on 145 carries, and he also leads the Hawks with 148 tackles.

Scouting the Panthers: Central rushed for 262 yards in the victory over Carrollton. Cole Williams had 100 yards and two scores, and Chayse Houston had 87 yards. Houston didn't play last week against Calhoun in a 30-12 victory in the first round, but Noah Strohkirch chipped in with a career-high 161 yards. The Panthers average 304.3 yards rushing per game. Williams leads the team with 1,024 yards and 11 touchdowns, while Houston has added 666 yards and Strohkirch has 560 yards. "We're polar opposites," Dixon said. "They like to throw the ball and go fast, and we like to slow it down and run the ball. We have a hard time duplicating each other's stuff in practice. I believe they will be much more prepared for us, but defensively, we're going to be better this time around too."

-- David Adam