Week three of the high school sports season is in full swing and there were plenty of big performances this past week, and many terrific events are on tap for this weekend in the metro area.

Let’s recap the week and get you ready for the weekend in this week’s edition of the Friday Fast Break.

In a highly anticipated volleyball match of the season, Ursuline upended the defending Class 4 state champions, Westminster, 3-1 Wednesday evening. The Bears opened the match with a 25-8 win in the first set, but the Wildcats even the tilt with a 26-24 victory in set two. Ursuline grabbed control of the match with a 25-23 third set win and clinched the match by winning the fourth set 26-24. Sophia Mika paced the Bears offense with 16 kills while Jillian Raterman added 11 kills for the Bears. Elizabeth Koening had a game-high 17 digs with Mika dishing out 25 assists and Koening handing out another 23 helpers in the win to help Ursuline improve to 4-1 on the year.

The week in football started Thursday evening Holt improved to 2-1 on the season with a 33-7 win over Washington 33-7 in Gateway Athletic Conference action. Holt raced out to a 19-0 lead at the half with Ty Williams catching a pair of touchdown passes from Owen Merrell while Gavin Moore recovered a blocked punt in the endzone to give the Indians the halftime lead. Merrell added a pair of rushing scores in the second half to aid Holt in the win.

In other Thursday night action on the gridiron, Liberty needed a score midway through the fourth quarter to earn a hard-fought 28-24 victory over North Point. In a big-time match-up of two teams that will make deep runs in the state playoffs later this fall, Howell knocked off Lutheran North 42-21. The Vikings, ranked third in the latest Class 5 poll, pulled away from the Crusaders, who are ranked sixth in Class 3, in the second half by using their defense and special teams to earn the win.

It is another big weekend on the football field as there are many matchups in the area that will go a long way in the state rankings and in the district placements at the end of the season.

Kirkwood travels to Eureka in a battle of teams that have had outstanding games over the past few years. The Wildcats are 2-0 on the year and have established the rushing attack as their main offensive threat as Kevin Emmanuel is the leading rusher for Eureka with 463 yards and five touchdowns already on the year. Quarterback Jace Peterson has thrown for three scores in running the offensive side of things while Connor Quinn is the defensive leader with 17 total tackles. The Pioneers are 1-1 on the year after defeating Pattonville 42-14 last week. Dion Brown has 262 yards on the ground and five touchdowns to pace the Kirkwood attack with Tyler Macon adding 222 receiving yards and a pair of scoring catches. Kylan Wallace has 12 tackles through two games to lead the Pioneer defense.
In a battle of ranked teams in St. Charles County, Lutheran St. Charles plays host to St. Dominic Friday night. The Cougars enter the game with a 2-0 record and will rely on a pair of running backs to lead the offense. Ayden Harris has 236 yards on the ground with two touchdowns while Allen Mitchell has added another 202 yards with three scores for Lutheran St. Charles. Quarterback Michael Gerdine has thrown for 265 yards and two scores while Harris paces the defense with 30 tackles on the young season. The Crusaders are also 2-0 on the year and have adapted nicely to life without star running back Jackson Overton, who was injured in the preseason. Thomas Pulliam is the leading ground gainer for St. Dominic with 214 yards and four touchdowns while Sam Cross has added 154 yards and four more scores as well. Nash Kell leads a Crusader defense that allowed 12 points on the year with 16 tackles.

In Jefferson County, Herculaneum welcomes Jefferson to Blackcat Stadium in hopes of defeating the Blue Jays for the first time since 2014. The Blackcats are 2-0 for the first time since 2011 and have received a boost on the offensive side of the ball and senior quarterback Jackson Dearing has been outstanding in controlling things. Dearing has thrown for 453 yards and seven touchdowns while rushing for another 173 yards and a score to pace Herculaneum. Mike Moloney has 24 tackles on the season to lead the Blackcat defense. Sean Usery paces the Jefferson running attack with 147 yards and three scores while quarterback Karson Haefner has added 158 yards through the air and a touchdown. Mason Campbell has 13 tackles to lead the Jefferson defense on the year.

The biggest cross country meet of the season takes place Saturday as St. Louis University High School and Big River Running host the annual Forest Park XC Festival. All of the top teams in the area and many teams from the Midwest will compete in the event that is set to begin at 7:30 a.m. Saturday morning. On the boys’ side of the meet, Festus, SLUH, and Lafayette will compete in the top division while Cor Jesu, MICDS, and Howell will go off in the top division on the girls’ side.

Jim Powers
Jim Powers

Jim Powers has been covering prep sports in the St. Louis area for 15+ years and a part of the Missouri State High School Activities Association Championship Broadcasts for the past 11 years. Powers is also a part of the Fox 2 Verlo Mattress Prep Zone Friday nights at 10:10 during the football and basketball seasons. If you have a prep sports story, please contact Jim at japowers2421@yahoo.com. Follow Jim at @hssportscaravan