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Lincoln North Star vs. Lincoln East, 10.3

Lincoln North Star's Jace Elliott (left) catches a pass in the first quarter as Lincoln East's Quinton Adams defends on Thursday at Seacrest Field.

Friday’s games

North Platte (1-5) at Lincoln North Star (1-5), Seacrest Field, 4:30 p.m.: After falling to Lincoln Southwest two weeks ago in overtime, North Platte finally broke through with a home win over Lincoln High last Friday. The Bulldogs average 271 yards per game on the ground, led by Cody Wright with 673. North Star quarterback DJ McGarvie went down with a concussion in the second half against Lincoln East last Thursday, so his availability is up in the air.

Omaha Benson (0-6) at Lincoln High (0-6), Beechner Athletic Complex, 6 p.m.: There will be one less winless team in Class A after this one. The Links have struggled offensively all season with just 30 points total for the year. This might be a chance for Lincoln High to get things going, however, as Benson has given up 45 or more points in five of their six losses.

Class A No. 5 Lincoln Southeast (5-1) at Lincoln Pius X (2-4), Aldrich Field, 7 p.m.: Pius X is coming off its best showing of the season, a 24-9 win at 3-3 Omaha Central last week, so the Thunderbolts come in with some confidence. With earlier games against No. 1 Bellevue West and No. 3 Millard South, Pius X won’t be intimidated by the Knights. Slowing down Southeast running back Nick Halleen (1,078 yards, 11 TDs this season), however, will still be a major challenge.

Class B No. 1 Omaha Skutt (6-0) at B No. 3 Waverly (6-0), 7 p.m.: Waverly has had this game marked on the calendar since its loss last year to the SkyHawks in the Class B state semifinals. The Vikings’ ground game, led by quarterback Mason Nieman, is the best in Class B. Skutt’s front seven against the run, however, is probably unmatched in B as well. That makes for an exciting matchup, one that could be repeated in the playoffs.

Lincoln Southwest (4-2) at Class A No. 9 Kearney (4-2), Cope Stadium, Nebraska-Kearney, 7 p.m.: Kearney had a 13-0 first half lead on No. 2 Millard West before the Wildcats scored the game’s final 23 points. The Silver Hawks struggled stopping North Platte’s ground game two weeks ago, and they’ll need to be much better against the Bearcats. Kearney features the fastest player in the state in senior all-stater Miko Maessner, who averages more than 100 yards per game rushing. It's a big two-game stretch for Southwest with Grand Island on the docket next week.

Lincoln East (4-2) at Omaha Bryan (0-6), 7 p.m.: East got some things to click in the passing game last week against North Star, an asset the Spartans will need down the road when they face No. 2 Millard West and No. 7 Grand Island in the final two weeks of the season. East is an overwhelming favorite against a Bryan team that’s given up 55 or more points in five of six losses.

Lincoln Christian (1-5) at Class C-1 No. 4 Ashland-Greenwood (6-0), 7 p.m.: Ashland-Greenwood has one of the top running backs in C-1 in all-stater Bryce Kitrell (688 yards, nine TDs), but the Bluejays are much more balanced this season with quarterback Hunter Washburn completing 53% of his passes for 814 yards and nine TDs.

Auburn (1-5) at Lincoln Lutheran (3-3), NWU’s Abel Stadium, 7 p.m.: Injuries have slowed Auburn recently, and the Bulldogs are coming off a 37-22 loss to Nebraska City, a team Lutheran beat two weeks ago 62-20. The Warriors played solid defense in posting a 20-7 win last week over Lincoln Christian. Combine that with their explosive offense, and that could help fuel a late-season run for Lutheran.

Parkview Christian (1-4) at Meridian (1-4), 7 p.m.: Considering where Parkview was before the season, not knowing if there would be enough players to field a team, it’s been a successful fall so far for the Patriots. They scored a combined 34 points in the back-to-back losses to defending state champion Johnson-Brock and No. 2 Falls City Sacred Heart the past two weeks, something Parkview can build on going forward.

Class B No. 6 Hastings (5-1) at B No. 10 Seward (3-3), Concordia University, 7 p.m.: Seward has running back Gabe Knisley back healthy, and that makes the Bluejays a more potent offensive team. But the Tigers have plenty of offensive weapons as well, led by quarterback Jarrett Synek, who is completing just under 60% of his passes for 1,313 yards and 13 TDs.

Omaha North (2-4) at Lincoln Northeast (1-5), Seacrest Field, 8 p.m.: North is still one of the top teams in the state, despite its record, and the 15-point win over Papillion-La Vista South last week further verified that. Led by LaVaughn Luellen’s 148 yards and two touchdowns, the Vikings rushed for 226 yards in building a 34-10 advantage early in the second half.

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Reach the writer at 402-473-7437 or rpowell@journalstar.com. On Twitter @ronpowell_ljs.

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Sports reporter

Ron Powell is a longtime prep writer for the Journal Star. He covers high school football, boys basketball and track as well as state college football and Husker and professional tennis.

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