WIAA football playoffs photo: Sun Prairie celebrates on its way to a clinch of a WIAA playoff berth

Sun Prairie's Brian McKenzie celebrates his 62-yard touchdown run on the game's first series with teammate Cooper Nelson, left, and Kyle Connell on Friday at Cardinal Heights Stadium.


All games 7 p.m. Friday


Oregon (3-2, 2-1 Badger South) at Stoughton (5-0, 3-0)

The Vikings are tied with Monona Grove for the Badger South lead (they’ll meet in two weeks) and will clinch a WIAA playoff berth if they can beat their arch-rival Panthers.

Stoughton has a senior-dominated, multi-faceted offense, led by Brady Schipper, who has 717 yards rushing and eight touchdowns despite missing some time due to injury. Jordan DiBenedetto has 231 yards rushing, Jonathan Malueg has thrown for 444 yards and run for 98 more, and Sam McHone has caught 16 passes for 177 yards and three scores. The Vikings have outscored their opponents, 166-49, and have given up only 20 points over the first three quarters (4.0 ppg).

Oregon lost back-to-back games to Mount Horeb/Barneveld and Monona Grove early on, but has beaten DeForest, Milton and Fort Atkinson. Senior Cedric Girard has thrown for 610 yards and seven TDs, with junior Kardelle Phillips catching 16 of the throws for 349 yards and three scores.


Madison Memorial (2-3, 2-3 Big Eight) at Sun Prairie (5-0, 5-0)

Coach Brian Kaminski’s Sun Prairie team has already clinched a playoff berth, and the Cardinals have done so by outscoring their opponents, 213-25. Sun Prairie has allowed only one touchdown after the first quarter in its five games combined, and has held opponents to an average of 101 yards of offense. Senior quarterback Jack Zander has thrown for 684 yards and 13 touchdowns, three caught by junior Cooper Nelson, and after being sidelined for the first three games, senior Draven Peeples has returned to average 68 yards rushing in his first two games back.

Memorial has made some changes to reclaim a season that was headed in the wrong direction — after losing to Middleton, West and Verona, coach Adam Jones’ Spartans have beaten La Follette and East. New quarterback Jason Ceniti has thrown for 434 yards and five TDs, but Memorial has averaged just 173 yards per game.

Verona (3-2, 3-2 Big Eight) at Madison La Follette (3-2, 3-2)

Coach Dave Richardson’s team needs to stop the bleeding, as the last two weeks have seen the Wildcats lose 23-17 to Madison West and 31-10 to Middleton. Bui Clements has been a bright spot on defense, delivering both big plays and steady leadership.

La Follette also has lost two in a row, 28-26 to Madison Memorial and 14-7 to Madison West. Coach Scott Swanson’s team has gotten 433 yards rushing from Kayvion James-Ragland and seven receiving touchdowns from Anthony West.

Monona Grove (5-0, 3-0 Badger South) at Monroe (2-3, 1-2)

Monona Grove needs a victory to lock in a playoff berth and guarantee at least a share of the Badger South Conference lead. The Silver Eagles also wouldn’t mind a little payback for last year’s 10-7 loss at Monroe that wound up costing the eventual WIAA Division 2 state runners-up the outright South title. Senior Alec Ogden already has thrown for 1,271 yards and 12 TDs at a 72.1 percent completion rate, with Lucas Gerlach making 26 grabs for 444 yards and six scores. Jackson Thomsen has rushed for 591 yards and 12 TDs, and Ogden has run for 314 yards.

Monroe has used a three-pronged running game, as junior Jordan Montgomery and seniors Travis Wolf and Dempzy Foley have combined for 760 yards, though each has individually gained between 250 and 257 yards. Wolf (46 tackles) and senior Sam Kind (37 tackles) lead the defense. Stoughton shut out the Cheesemakers last week, 18-0.

Lodi (5-0, 1-0 Capitol North) at Lakeside Lutheran (4-1, 1-0)

Despite a dominant 55-24 victory over previously unbeaten Lake Mills last week, Lodi dropped out of the No. 1 ranking in The Associated Press’ medium-school rankings. Coach Dave Puls’ team apparently has more proving to do, despite outscoring opponents, 208-49, and racking up averages of 402 yards gained and 209 allowed per game. Senior Jacob Heyroth has rushed for 950 yards and 12 TDs, and senior Cameron McDonald has thrown for 446 yards and seven scores at a 68.3-percent clip. Senior linebacker Max Barreau leads the defense with 25 tackles, six for loss.

Lakeside Lutheran has been a team on the rise after a heartbreaking 32-31 loss to Elkhorn in Week Two. Last week, coach Paul Bauer’s Warriors opened Capitol North play by pounding Poynette, 62-0. Junior Jack Monis has fueled the offense, throwing for 312 yards and four touchdowns and rushing for 742 yards and four more scores. Senior Cade Olszewski leads the defense with 39 tackles and has run for 466 yards and three scores.

Jefferson (4-1, 4-1 Rock Valley) at East Troy (4-1, 4-1)

Coach Steve Gee’s Eagles fell from the ranks of the unbeaten with a 32-7 loss at Clinton last week, and need a victory to remain no worse than a game off the first-place pace. The same is true for East Troy, and there’s the added bonus that the winner of Friday’s game will lock in a WIAA playoff berth.

Johnson Creek (5-0, 3-0 Trailways Small) at Fall River (4-1, 3-0)

Sole possession of the Trailways Small Conference lead is at stake as the Bluejays visit the Pirates, and the winner also will clinch a WIAA playoff berth. Coach Tim Wagner’s Creek team has gotten 672 yards rushing and 14 touchdowns from senior Brent Berger. Coach Joe Zander’s Fall River team has averaged 32.2 points per game.


Wisconsin State Journal prep sports editor Art Kabelowsky has traversed the state to cover sports while working for daily papers in Fort Atkinson, Racine, La Crosse, Milwaukee and Baraboo.