Lebo, Peabody-Burns to battle for playoff spot

By: Mark Schremmer for Kpreps.com
Oct 31, 2013

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For the Lebo Wolves and the Peabody-Burns Warriors, the playoffs basically start a week early.

Simply put, the winner advances to the first round of the 8-Man Division I playoffs and the loser’s football season will be over.

The Warriors’ 40-34 upset win over previously top-ranked and undefeated Madison has created a four-way tie between Madison, Peabody-Burns, Lebo and Centre-Lost Springs for first place in 8-Man Division I District 3. Centre-Lost Springs travels to Madison and Peabody-Burns is at Lebo to decide the district’s champion and runner-up.

“Our district has become a little crazy of trying to figure out who’s coming out,” Lebo coach Troy McArthur said. “But it’s basically a playoff game.”

The four teams all have 4-1 district records. If Madison and Peabody-Burns win, then the Warriors will be district champions and the Bulldogs will be the runner-up. If Madison and Lebo win, the Bulldogs will win the district and the Wolves will take second. If Centre and Peabody-Burns win, the Cougars will take the title and the Warriors will take the No. 2 spot. If Centre and Lebo win, the Wolves will win the district title and the Cougars will be the runner-up.

Got all that?

For McArthur, there is little concern about what happens in the Madison and Centre-Lost Springs game as his focus is on the matchup against the Warriors.

“We understand that we still have a chance to finish No. 1 in our district,” he said. “But we just got to take care of our part. Either way, if we win then we are in the playoffs.”

The battle between the two District 3 teams was voted by the readers of Kpreps.com as the statewide game of the week.

Peabody-Burns’ (7-1, 4-1 district) only loss came 14-8 to Centre on Oct. 4. Lebo (6-2, 4-1) lost the season-opener 40-28 at Waverly and fell 57-22 to Madison on Oct. 11.

The Warriors’ offense is directed by junior quarterback Braxton Kyle, who has passed for 640 yards and six touchdowns while rushing for 604 yards and seven touchdowns. Senior Fred Windsor leads the ground attack with 1,071 yards and 20 touchdowns. Junior Kevin Baatrup has 11 catches for 252 yards and three touchdowns.

Senior running back Garrett Holmes leads the Wolves’ offense. Holmes has rushed for at least 100 yards in all but two games this season.

“He is very quick,” McArthur said. “He is very elusive.”

Jake Gould is a two-year starter at quarterback for Lebo.

Defensively, the Wolves will try to slow down a Warriors’ offense that has scored at least 40 points in seven of eight games.

"We have to keep their speed in check," McArthur said. "We have to keep them from getting to the edge."

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