High School Sports

Freeburg-Columbia showdown highlights week 6 of high school football season



Two long time rivals will meet with first place in the Cahokia Conference on the line when Freeburg (4-1) visits Columbia (5-0).

With both teams currently undefeated (3-0) in league play, thie winner will be the frontrunner for the title with just two leagu games remaining for both teams.

Both the Midgets and Eagles rely on a balanced offensive attack with a strong defense. Freeburg is led by senior quarterback Cal CLossen (53-of-92, 943 yards, 13 TD’s) and running back Tanner Little (794 yards, 8 TD’s). The Midgets, who have outscored their five opponents 191-111, also have one of the top athletes in the league in senior wide receiver Brendan Meng (17 receptions, 498 yards, 8 TD’s).

Columbia, which is ranked fourth in the Class 4A state poll this week also has its share of speed. The Eagles are double trouble in the backfield with junior Donovan Bieber (440 yards, 4 TD’s) and Ronnie Hunsaker (348 yards, 8 TD’s) threats to break away on every play. Junior quarteback Nic Horner is a gifted leader and has the ability to run and throw the football.

Columbia, which has won the last seven games between the two teams, can clinch a playoff spot with a win on Friday. Freeburg, with a victory, will become playoff eligible.


Two longtime rivals in the Southwestern Conference, Collinsville (2-3) and Granite City (2-3) will battle to get back to the .500 mark and stay in playoff contention when they meet at Granite City High School.

Granite City is competing as an independent after leaving the SWC in all sports following the 2017-18 school year. The Warriors, led by sensational junior quarterback Freddy Edwards, fell to Class 7A power Belleville West 52-7 last week and have outscored their five opponents 164-163. Edwards, one of the top college prospects in the St. Louis area, has accounted for over 1,300 yards of total offense and 15 touchdowns this season.

Collinsville is leaving the SWC in football after this season but will continue to compete in the league in every other sport. The Kahoks fell to 2-3 after dropping a 74-13 game to East St. Louis a week ago. but did defeat O’Fallon 38-28 in a high scoring game in week four of the regular season.

Quarterback Chris Chi (643 yards, 7 TD passes) has been solid while running back Jayden Nabors has rushed for 357 yards and a pair of scores.


The Madison Trojans return to the gridiron a year ago after a 30 year hiatus turned out to be a huge success as coach Mike Hill’s football team ended its season with a 6-4 reorrd and a berth in the Class 1A playoffs.

Year No. 2 has been even better for the Trojans. With its 36-14 win over Nokomis last week, the Trojans improved to 5-0 and became playoff eligible. A win this week at Pecatonica (1-4), would clinch the Trojans second straight trip to the postseason.

Hill, a longtime assistant coach before getting the job of taking over at Madsion, has a team which has been good on both sides of the football. In five games, the Madison defense has allowed only 28 points and has three shutouts, ( one forfeit).

Freshman quarterback Anthony Sillas has directed an efficient offense which has scored 135 points and is averaging 27 points per contest.. The Trojans were just out of the top 10 in the Class 1A state football poll, ranked 11tih with 12 points in voting by sportswriters throughout the state.


Neither the Mascoutah Indians or Cahokia Comanches have been in the playoffs since the 2009 season. Wins by both teams this week will go a long way towards ending those droughts.

Both 4-1 for the season, the Comanches and Indians will be playoff eligible with wins and need to win just two of their final four games to have the required six victories to gain automatic berths in the playoffs.

While Mascoutah is led by junior running back Devin Wills, the Indians also feature a strong and balanced offensive attack along with a defense which has alowed only 55 points during its current four game winning streak. The Indians have a road game at Mississippi Valley Conference rival Triad on Friday then will host Civic Memorial on Oct. 5.

Cahokia, which is coached by former University and NFL lineman John Clay, last made a postseason apperance in the 2009 Class 5A playoffs where it dropped a second round game at Joliet Catholic.

But led by versatile quarterback Malik Shaw, the Comanches took command of the South Seven Conference race last week with a win over previously undefeated Carbondale. With Shaw (1,100 yards total offense) leading the rejuivinated offense, Cahokia is ranked 10th in the Class 4A state poll this week..

Cahokia will host Centralia on Friday then travels to Mount Vernon on Oct. 5.