Western Christian has a chance at clinching sole possession of the Class 1A District 1 title while West Lyon is trying to hang on to a potential playoff berth as the two powerhouses clash Friday in Inwood.
The Wolfpack come into the game ranked third in the state in RPI and unbeaten at 8-0. Western Christian has built this year’s success on its defense. The team has three shutouts to its credit. The only opponent to score more than seven points against the Wolfpack was defending state champion West Sioux, and Western Christian still won that game in a 25-21 upset.
West Lyon’s defense also has three shutouts, but it’s the offensive side of the ball that has stood out most for the Wildcats during a 7-1 start that has them seventh in the Iowa High School Athletic Association’s RPI rankings. The Wildcats average 45.4 points per game. Its lowest output of the season came in a 35-28 loss to West Sioux that was decided on the final play.
West Lyon senior quarterback Jalyn Gramstad has thrown for 1,071 yards and 11 touchdowns with just three interceptions. Senior Logan Meyer is the top rusher with 720 yards and 14 touchdowns. He also has 12 catches for 372 yards and a touchdown. Senior Gavin Lorenzen has 16 catches for 377 yards and eight touchdowns.
Western Christian counters with a defense led by junior Tristan Mulder, who had 53.65 tackles, seven tackles for loss and four sacks. Senior Eli Van Ginkel has six sacks and junior Levi Vanden Bos has five. Senior Kobi Baccam has five interceptions. Senior Blake De Jager has recovered two fumbles. The Wolfpack defense has created 15 turnovers on the year.
Baccam leads the team in rushing with 356 yards and four touchdowns. Mulder has eight rushing touchdowns. Junior Tyson Boer has thrown for 1,341 yards and 15 touchdowns with nine interceptions. Senior Jacob Ver Burg has 21 catches for 438 yards and three touchdowns. Senior Matthew Van Otterloo has 20 catches for 220 yards and a touchdown. Baccam has four receiving scores.
West Lyon’s defense is led by seniors Gauge Erickson and Davian Sterner with 47.5 and 47 tackles respectively. Sterner has seven tackles for loss and three sacks. Gramstad has three interceptions. West Lyon’s defense has forced 20 turnovers on the season.
In other N’West Iowa sports, the field for the state cross country meet will be determined on Thursday with the state-qualifying meets in each class. The Class 3A teams from the region will be at the meet hosted by Humboldt, Unity Christian is the host for the Class 2A meet and the Class 1A squads go to Ridge View.
In volleyball the postseason begins with first-round regional matches in Class 1A and Class 2A on Tuesday and Class 3A on Wednesday.