The seasons for the Goddard Eisenhower and Newton High School football teams have paralleled each other in the first two weeks of the season.
Both teams suffered close losses to Maize, with each team having chances to win, and both teams suffered substantial losses to a state power.
The Tigers and Railers will collide at 7 p.m. Friday at Goddard District Stadium to open Ark Valley-Chisholm Trail League Division II play.
Eisenhower opened with a 48-14 loss to Derby in the opening week of the season. The Tigers fell to Maize 13-10 last week. Maize scored on a 33-yard pass play with 1:46 remaining in regulation to claim the win.
Newton opened the season with a 22-19 loss to Maize, then lost to Class 6A power Hutchinson 41-7 last week.
“We’ve had good attitudes and decent practices this week,” Newton coach Chris Jaax said. “We have a lot of things to work on. Hutch showed us a lot of things we need to work on, and we’ve been trying to correct those.”
Eisenhower is led by quarterback Ty Trudo, who has 231 yards rushing on 34 carries with a touchdown. Trudo has hit six of 13 passes for 51 yards. He also averages 33.1 yards a punt, with two inside the 20. He also has a punt return and a kick return.
Justice Moore and Parker Wenzel each have 77 yards rushing. Parker has 24 yards receiving, while Wenzel has 18.
“They are a good team,” Jaax said. “They return almost all their offensive line from last year. Much of their defense is back from last year. They played very close against Maize. They had a chance to win it. Maize had a big play late to win it. I expect they will be ready to go, looking forward to getting a win.”
Jaax looks for Eisenhower to run a flex-bone option, the same look Hutchinson gave the Railers last week. Jaax said the difference between the two teams is Hutchinson looked to attack up the middle, while Eisenhower will try to attack the outside. He said the Tigers run about a 90 percent to 10 percent mix of run to pass.
He said the Tigers used both a 3-4 and 3-3 look on defense. Jaax said the secondary will play “downhill, trying to take away the passing routes.”
Newton is led on offense by Colton Davis, who has hit 26 of 45 passes for 226 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. Davis also has 56 yards rushing with two touchdowns. Isaiah Presley has 25 carries for 73 yards. Jamison Jones has 13 carries for 65 yards.
Hunter Mapes has nine catches for 74 yards receiving, followed by Warren Dietz with six catches for 58 yards.
“We have to do a better job of taking care of the football,” Jaax said. “We had two turnovers against Hutchinson, twice in a row, that turned a 0-0 game into a 21-0 game in a span of three minutes. We have to run the ball better than we did against Hutchinson.”