Every Wednesday during the regular season we will highlight the 8-Player Football game with a spotlight article on WisSports.net. We'll look back at the action and big stories from the previous week, look ahead at the coming week's big match-ups, and select a Star of the Week.
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The big game in 8-Player last week featured defending champion Luck taking on Lakeland-8 West challenger Shell Lake, whose only two losses last season came against the Cardinals. Ultimately, things played out very similarly in 2020, with Luck scoring a 50-19 victory. Quarterback Wyatt Jensen was huge in the contest, but more on him a bit later.
Belmont's Riley Christensen had a typical Riley Christensen day as the Braves downed Williams Bay 56-12. The senior quarterback ran for 255 yards and three touchdowns on just eight carries (that's a 31.9 yard per carry average) and completed four-of-five passes for 84 yards and two touchdowns. Will Cutler added 102 rushing yards and two touchdowns on just three carries.
Marion/Tigerton topped rival Tri-County 64-6 on Friday, as Nick Malueg ran for 281 yards and four touchdowns on 21 carries. Ethan Scheef added 106 passing yards and two touchdowns to go with a rushing score as well. Clayton had a pair of running backs go over 100 yards, and they needed every one of them in a 26-25 victory against Siren. Gunnar Lewis led the way with 193 yards and three touchdowns, while Colton Zacharias added 130 yards.
On Saturday, Newman Catholic took out Northwood/Solon Spring 54-18 in a matchup of ranked teams. The second-ranked Cardinals got a huge game from senior Dylan Ackerman, who completed 15-of-18 passes for 330 yards and five touchdowns, adding 10 rushes for 140 yards and two scores on the ground as well.
Another quarterback put up huge numbers on Saturday also, as McDonell Central ran away from Phillips 60-18. Tanner Opsal completed 13-of-17 passes for 332 yards and five touchdowns with 118 yards and three scores on the ground as well.
It is an old-school Cloverbelt/Cloverwood showdown as unbeaten teams McDonell Central and Gilman square off on Friday in Gilman. The teams are ranked sixth and third respectively in the latest WisSports.net Coaches Poll, and each has looked dominant this year. Gilman has made a very successful transition to the 8-player game in its first season.
A week after dispatching Shell Lake, another Lakeland-8 West challenger is waiting for Luck, as the Cardinals welcome in Clayton. No one has been able to slow down Luck's rushing attack so far this year. Can the Bears be that team?
Belmont has looked very good once again this season, with Riley Christensen leading the way. The third-ranked Braves welcome in ninth-ranked Elkhart Lake-Glenbeulah this weekend.
In a week filled with huge performances in 8-Player Football, Luck's Wyatt Jensen was as good as anyone. The junior is the top returning player from last year's state championship squad, and was a big part of the team's dominating offensive performance in a 50-19 win over Shell Lake. Jensen carried the ball 15 times for 312 yards and four touchdowns in the victory, adding a touchdown pass plus nine tackles on defense for the Cardinals.
Travis Wilson serves as the WisSports.net General Manager, Football Editor, and contributing writer for other parts of the site. Wilson was selected as part of the Sports 40 Under 40 list by Coach & AD Magazine and the National High School Athletic Coaches Association for 2019. The Wisconsin Football Coaches Association (WFCA) named Travis the 2015 recipient of the Dave McClain Distinguished Service Award. He currently serves on the WFCA Executive Board as the Website and Communications Director and is a member of the Executive Board of the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association. A graduate of Richland Center High School and Mount Mercy College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Travis was a three-sport athlete in high school (football, baseball, basketball) and currently resides in Reedsburg. You can follow him on Twitter at @travisWSN.
For the latest and most up to date football news and recruiting information, follow Travis on Twitter @travisWSN. Email story ideas, recruiting info, etc. to Travis at travis(at)wissports.net.