The football teams from Kirkwood and Hazelwood East are used to high stakes games, particularly against each other. Hazelwood East eliminated Kirkwood from the playoffs in 2004 and 2008. Kirkwood defeated Hazelwood East 41-20 last season to advance to the state championship game.
Both schools enter Sunday’s game at East St. Louis (directions) ranked in the area Large School Rankings and won their opening week matchup: #1 Kirkwood defeated Pattonville 38-10 and #10 Hazelwood East defeated McCluer 12-0.
The Pioneers threw the ball effectively, but the Kirkwood offense really found a groove in the running game. QB Jordan Bishop and RB Ramon Alton shredded Pattonville for almost 200 yards.
Many of the runs were different forms of what is know as the “Zone Read” or “QB Choice” play. The quarterback has the choice to hand the ball off to the running back going one direction or pull the ball back and run the other way himself. If you are really interested, here is a video to explain the play. Hazelwood East also ran a lot of Zone Read rushing plays in their win over McCluer.
The Spartans also boast a potent rushing attack. Hazelwood East brings a fleet of running backs with varsity experience running behind a big offensive line:
- Jimmy Jones (1,013 rushing yards and 12 TDs last year)
- Dallas Vaughn (557 rushing yards and 12 TDs)
- Ahmad Huddleston (594 rushing yards and 8 TDs)
- Tim Harris (484 rushing yards and 5 TDs)
In last year’s semifinal matchup, the Pioneer defense held the Spartan rushing attack to three yards per carry.
For future matchups, there will be a statistical comparisons of the teams, but Hazelwood East has not made its statistics available.
Ticket Information: Advanced tickets to the game are $8 for students and $10 for adults and can be purchased at the KHS athletic office from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tickets will also be available for purchase at the gate on game day for $15 before the 5 p.m. game time.
Television Information: Sunday’s game will broadcast (tape delay) on Fox Sports Midwest on Monday, Sept. 3 at 10:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 7 at noon and Thursday, Sept. 20 at 11 p.m.
For in-game updates, follow @KirkwoodFB on Twitter or like Kirkwood Football on Facebook.
After the game, the scoring summary and standout performances will be posted here on Kirkwood Patch!