The Harvest Prep football team will look to win a postseason game for the third consecutive season when it opens the Division VII, Region 27 playoffs Friday, Nov. 3, at home against Hannibal River.
The third-seeded Warriors improved to 9-1 with a 90-7 victory over Fairfield Christian on Oct. 27 that included two interception returns for touchdowns and another spectacular first half for senior running back Daniel Bangura.
Harvest Prep, which reached a state semifinal last season, would play second-seeded Waterford or seventh-seeded Portsmouth Sciotoville Community in a regional semifinal Nov. 10 if it wins its playoff opener. The Warriors beat Waterford for the regional title a year ago.
Sixth-seeded River is 6-4 but has won three of its past four games.
"We're happy with where we're at and how we're playing," Warriors coach Milan Smith said. "You've got to find a way to beat every team they put ahead of you."
Harvest Prep went 7-0 in the MSL-Cardinal Division to win its fourth consecutive league title.
Bangura, who set state records last season for rushing yards (4,128), total touchdowns (57), rushing touchdowns (54) and points (348) last season, is on his way to eclipsing some of those numbers this fall despite playing in only nine games.
Against Fairfield Christian, Bangura scored six first-quarter touchdowns and finished with 335 yards rushing, earning him the state's all-time record for career rushing yards. He has 3,192 yards rushing, 42 rushing touchdowns and 46 total touchdowns this season.
"It's very exciting," Smith said. "He's worked really hard."
Javon Eggert rushed for 133 yards and one touchdown and Jaylon Davis scored three touchdowns, including two on interception returns, for the Warriors.
River, which is located along the Ohio River across from West Virginia, lost to Ready 28-21 in the first round of last year's Division VI, Region 23 playoffs after winning all 10 of its regular-season games.
The Pilots are led by senior dual-threat quarterback Lukas Isaly (5-foot-10, 175 pounds), who was first-team all-state each of the past two seasons.