By Mark Schnabel
The Newton High School football team will attempt to extend its winning streak to three games against possibly its toughest opponent to date.
The 2-1 Railers take on 2-1 Hutchinson at 7 p.m. Friday at Gowans Stadium in Hutchinson.
The Salt Hawks are coming off a 41-7 loss to Kansas City (Mo.) Rockhurst, the team's worst loss in more than 10 years.
Newton downed Campus 48-7 to claim back-to-back wins for the first time since 2009.
"Hutchinson is a well-coached, really solid team," Newton coach Nate Wollenberg said. "They execute very well. They have good athletes who understand their job. We have to continue to get better and improve on those things we need to. This is a good test for us to do that against."
Hutchinson is led on offense by running back Jacob Hardenberger, who has 70 carries for 545 yards. Quarterback Turner Wintz has hit six of 22 passes for 102 yards with two interceptions. Wintz also has 35 carries for 223 yards.
"They run a flex-bone offense with a lot of different looks," Wollenberg said. "They will line up unbalanced, with two tight ends and will do some other things. On defense, they are pretty consistent with a four-man front. With our wing-T, a lot of teams will try to walk a linebacker up to the tight-end side.
"They execute the flex-bone well. We have practiced against it with our scout team. Our kids have done a real good job of giving us the look, the problem is it's hard to simulate the speed and skill that Hutchinson will execute it."
Wollenberg said facing Hutchinson after its first loss won't be an advantage or a disadvantage.
"Hutchinson is always going to be tough," Wollenberg said. "They will learn to make adjustments, win or lose. All we can do is play the best we can."
Newton is led by Seth Hill with 57 carries for 387 yards, Braedon Morrison with 46 carries for 337 yards, Bradley Million with 18 carries for 223 yards and Jack Kingsley with 38 carries for 196 yards.
Morrison has hit 15 of 27 passes for 340 yards. Kingsley has hit six of 12 passes for 81 yards. Cory Martens has nine catches for 205 yards.
"The things we're trying to work on are being more consistent with sustaining drives," Wollenberg said. "We still need to do a better job of sustaining blocks until the play is over. We know Hutch won't make a lot of mental mistakes."
Wollenberg reports no new injuries for this week.
Note: There will be no Newton Webcast of the game this week.