The Superior High School football team puts its undefeated record on the line at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20, at Hudson.
The best thing that could have happened to the Spartans heading into the Big Rivers Conference tilt was the Raiders picking up their first win last week with a 56-20 rout of Eau Claire North.
The Raiders (1-3, 1-1) entered the ECN game winless, but the 56 points they scored, including 35 in a span of 7 minutes, 21 seconds in the second quarter, should help take care of any chances the Spartans (4-0, 2-0) have of being overconfident.
“Hudson will be as tough as anyone we face this season,” SHS coach Bob DeMeyer said. “They have depth, good team speed and they are very well-coached. We'll have to shore up the mental errors, be more sound with our assignments and continue to get better in all phases. We know Hudson is starting to hit on all cylinders and it will be a great battle.”
Another reason for the Spartans to take the Raiders seriously is the fact that they are just 2-7 vs. Hudson over the past nine seasons.
The Spartans snapped a four-game skid against the Raiders with a 35-28 win in 2014, then defeated Hudson again, 10-7, in 2015.
Hudson has won the last three games by a combined 58-21, including 16-7 last season.
Hudson coach Adam Kowles said it was good to see the Raiders play fast and loose after its 0-3 start.
“You lose one early, and then you lose another early. I don’t care who you are, you get doubts, and you hear it from other people,” Kowles told the Hudson Observer. “You’ve got to get rid of all that stuff and just keep doing things the way you’re supposed to. And guys did it all week. It was a great week of practice and they had a great attitude.”
Junior Owen Anderson is Hudson's new quarterback, taking over for Keyser Helterbrand, who threw for 1,664 yards and 12 touchdowns last season and rushed for a team-high 905 yards and 17 TDs.
Junior Hunter Danielson scored Hudson’s first two TDs last week on runs of 8 and 48 yards. Zach Koochdorfer scored from 3 yards out, Torin Phillips returned an interception 55 yards for a score, and TD runs of 58, 36 and 19 yards made the score 49-0 with 4:39 left in the first half.
“We’re excited (to play Superior) but we just have to get better and keep improving and tweak things,” Kowles said. “We know it gets harder, but we just have to play our game and see what happens.”
The Spartans, who defeated ECN 49-7 on Sept. 6, won a battle of undefeated teams last week, 21-9 at Eau Claire Memorial.
Senior quarterback Jarrett Gronski scored two of Superior’s touchdowns and now leads the Spartans with 346 yards rushing with seven touchdowns. He’s also 4-of-10 passing for 137 yards and one TD.
Junior Kaden Kimmes, the second prong on Superior's two-quarterback system, has completed 12-of-20 passes for 289 yards and five touchdowns, including a 29-yard scoring pass to Brady Herbst in last week’s win.
Also for Superior, Carter Fonger has 246 yards rushing and two TDs; Caden Stone has 199 yards and three TDs; and Herbst has five receptions for 162 yards and three TDs.
Cody Kurski has a team-high 27 tackles. Right behind is Herbst with 25 tackles, which includes two sacks and six other tackles behind the line of scrimmage.
Dane Polkinghorne has 22 tackles and Sean McCoshen and Donavynne Brown both have 18.
SPARTAN SPIN: The 1986 Spartan football team, which included DeMeyer, will be inducted into the Superior Hall of Fame on Sept. 28. Other inductees include Hailey Kontny, Pat O'Brien, Cara "Fenhouse" Pond and Bud Brand. The academic inductee is Toby Heytens. Tickets cost $40. For more information, contact Ray Kosey at firstname.lastname@example.org or 715-394-8720 ext. 41137.