Varsity Football: Helias Preview

The Hawklets play a rare Thursday night football game tonight in Jefferson City, and no, it’s not against the Jefferson City Jay. The Hawklets face the undefeated Helias High School Crusaders, who are coming off a 36-14 victory over Columbia Rock Bridge.

Time: 7:00 P.M.

Location: Helias High School- Jefferson City, Mo.

Records: Rockhurst (6-1); Helias (7-0)

Last Week: Rockhurst beat Columbia Hickman 42-6; Helias beat Rock Bridge 36-14

State Ranking: Rockhurst- #3; Helias- #7

Key Matchups:

Rockhurst’s improved defense vs. Helias’ hot offense

Helias has clearly been on fire this season; an undefeated record is impressive regardless of the competition. While they have yet to play a highly-ranked opponent (Rockhurst will be their first), Helias is averaging an impressive 35 points per game.

Senior tight end Hale Hentges, an Alabama-commit and the number 3 overall player in Missouri, is the focal point of the offense. The Crusaders use him both split out wide and in tight to block for their run game.

This will challenge a Hawklet defense that has improved drastically since the beginning of the season, and has given up just 0, 13 and 6 points in their last three games.

Mindset of each team

Helias has yet to play a team ranked higher than 27 in the state of Missouri, and they will be forced to adapt to a higher level of football. That being said, if Helias chooses to prematurely assume a victory due to the fact they have yet to lose, Rockhurst will most likely dominate. The Hawklets must continue to rely on the defense and passing game that has carried them through the season thus far.

Both teams are expecting to come out of this game with a victory, and both have the means to  achieve it. This means a strong disappointment is in one team’s future. Helias Head Coach Mr. Chris Hentges will be looking to prove that his team can beat top tier teams in the state before the playoffs, while Rockhurst Head Coach Mr. Tony Severino will want his team to prove yet again that they are one of the state’s top teams.

Bottom Line

While the Blue Spring’s game two weeks ago was the highest ranked opponent Rockhurst played, the Helias game may rival it in importance. The playoffs will begin in two weeks, and both teams have something to prove before then. Rockhurst must demonstrate that their recent play isn’t a mistake, and that they can continue to compete with the best in Missouri.

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