Colton Cowan

Centerville’s Colton Cowan (66) fires up his teammates in last week’s game against Chariton.

Who: Centerville (3-3, 1-1) vs Clarke (3-3, 1-1)

Where: Osceola

When: Friday, Oct. 11 at 7 p.m.

Matchup history

Centerville has won each of the last five meetings between these two schools. It was the Big Reds’ homecoming game last year and Jaxson Ocker made it one to remember as the senior quarterback had a school-record seven rushing touchdowns and 363 rushing yards in a Centerville 49-30 victory.

One key player for Centerville

With McCain Oden, you can usually start with his offensive talent. But against a funky run-heavy team like Clarke, Oden the linebacker will have a much bigger impact in this game. Clarke rushed for 382 yards in this game a year ago and they currently lead Class 2A with 1,924 rushing yards through six games (320.7 yards per game). Clarke’s offense puts a lot of pressure on the linebackers to stay disciplined and make one-on-one tackles in space. Oden will need to be sharp on his reads and make a lot of tackles for the Big Reds to slow down the Indians. Centerville knows what to expect out of Oden offensively, he can help control the clock and run for a lot of big plays to help move the chains for the Big Red offense.

Keys for Centerville

It all starts defensively, Clarke is the top running team in the class. When they get their ground game going, they chew up a lot of clock and tire down a defense over the course of four quarters. Centerville needs to have a good game plan defensively and execute it. Although Centerville won last week. This was the fourth straight week where they didn’t score more than 14 points. The offense needs to sustain drives and find a way to finish them with points whether that is field goals or touchdowns. Taking away a shutout against Saydel, Clarke has given up an average of 41.4 points per game. This week should be a good chance for the Centerville offense to get back on track for the final stretch. Clarke is 3-3 so far this season, they had the same record going into this game a year ago before losing their last three games. The Indians haven’t had a winning season since 1995 where they went 5-4. They will be eager to change that in another essentially playoff elimination game against Centerville on Friday.

Colin Peters can be reached at cpeters@dailyiowegian.com or by calling the newsroom at 641-856-6336. Follow him on Twitter @ColinPetersDI.

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