LITTLE RIVER — It's rematch time for the Little River Redskins on Friday in the opening round of the 8-Man Division I playoffs.
The Redskins travel to Coldwater to take on South Central in a rematch of last year's first-round game won 54-28 by the Timberwolves.
"They are a very physical and athletic team who are very good in every aspect of the game," Little River coach Chad Lafferty said. "Offensively they do a lot of shifting pre-snap, which changes the players they have who are eligible. They also motion a lot and if you watch the backfield action you end up chasing the wrong guy who doesn't even have the ball. We will have to be very disciplined and trust our reads to prevent the big play."
The Timberwolves have a tremendous defense as they have posted four straight shutouts and have six overall.
"They are very athletic and try and force you out of your comfort zone with their pressure and defensive line who is looking to get penetration and disrupt the backfield," Lafferty said. "We need to do a really good job of getting a hat on a hat and sticking to our blocks to prevent them from putting us in long down and distances."
Coldwater is 8-1, its only loss a 30-27 decision to Hodgeman County. The Timberwolves have not given up a point since Sept. 29 when they outlasted Macksville, 23-16.
Lafferty said his team won't be bothered by the long trip, which covers about 140 miles.
"I don't think the long trip will be a problem," he said. "We travel to places like Wakefield within our own league so we are accustomed to some long trips. I think our players would travel anywhere as long as they know they get to play another football game."
The Redskins have had a splendid 7-2 season, the only losses to Bennington (42-20) and Central Plains (52-12). They have been on a tear the last three weeks by point-ruling Canton-Galva (62-14), Ellinwood (66-18) and St. John (46-0).
Little River has a diversified offense, with Levi Swenson at the controls. Hunter Thomas, Peyton Harvey and Graham Stephens provide nice balance with their strong running.
Tonight’s winner plays next Frisay against the Hoxie-Ness City winner.