Here are the weekly Belleville News-Democrat Game Balls given to area football players for some top performances in Week 4:
- Red Bud quarterback Griffin Ziebold completed all nine of his passes in the first quarter Friday for 209 yards and three touchdowns in a 47-8 Cahokia Conference win over Dupo.
- Belleville West running back Paris Johnson racked up 116 yards and two TDs on 10 carries Saturday in the Maroons’ 49-20 Southwestern Conference victory over Collinsville. Maroons quarterback Logan Betz also had a big game, running for 111 yards and three TDs on 10 carries.
- East St. Louis (4-0) got 116 yards rushing and one TD from Jarrell Anderson in a 44-0 victory over Granite City. East Side quarterback and University of Missouri recruit Reyondous Estes added 112 yards rushing, including a 48-yard TD run, on only five carries for the Flyers.
- Red Bud receiver Gavin Rensing helped the Musketeers improve to 4-0 by hauling in six receptions for 136 yards and three TDs in a 47-8 win over Dupo. Rensing, who caught TD passes for 37 and 33 yards in the first quarter, has caught 10 TD passes among his 20 receptions for 493 yards.
- Waterloo senior receiver Kyle Knefelkamp was a wrecking ball in the Bulldogs’ 21-14 Mississippi Valley Conference win over previously unbeaten Triad. Knefelkamp returned the opening kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown, caught a 78-yard TD pass from Ross Schrader in the third quarter and also had a big catch for a crucial first down. He had two catches for 96 yards in the game.
- Central running back Collin Thomas rolled up 167 yards and two TDs on 14 carries as the Cougars (4-0) beat Carlyle 58-18. Thomas leads Central in rushing with 566 yards and 11 TDs. Quarterback Hunter Toeben completed nine of 13 passes for 140 yards and two TDs.
- Belleville East running back Roderick Morgan had a 94-yard TD run in the Lancers’ first win of the season, a 19-6 SWC victory over Alton. Morgan finished the night with 106 yards on 11 carries. Belleville East quarterback Kienen Waller added 90 yards rushing on 16 carries.
- Edwardsville sophomore Dionte Rodgers continues turning heads this season, running for 149 yards and catching a TD pass in the Tigers’ 19-0 Southwestern Conference victory over O’Fallon. Rodgers leads the Tigers with 10 TDs this season.
- It was another big week for Columbia’s top offensive weapons as the 4-0 Eagles hammered Wesclin 44-13 in a Cahokia Conference win. Junior running back Colton Byrd had 176 yards and one TD on 19 carries while junior receiver Jordan Holmes caught eight passes for 112 yards and a TD from quarterback Greg Long.
- Highland linebacker Kyle Lane helped ignite a 28-0 shutout victory over Mascoutah with 12 tackles and a fumble recovery, while defensive end Ian Fraser added 10 tackles and Jack Etter had nine tackles and a fumble recovery. The Bulldogs also got 111 yards and two TDs from running back Trent Rakers.
- Althoff junior Justin Strong had a 30-yard TD return off an interception and also scored on a 1-yard TD run in the Crusaders’ dominant 55-16 South Seven win over Mount Vernon. Crusaders quarterback Trey Mosley threw three TD passes, completing six of 11 passes for 123 yards.
- O’Fallon senior running back Mason Hewitt had 122 yards on 32 carries in a 19-0 loss to Edwardsville.
BND Prep Football Rankings
Rankings for metro-east teams; voting by area coaches and News-Democrat staff. First-place votes are in parentheses.
Large school rankings (Class 5A-8A)
East St. Louis (4)
Also receiving votes: Highland (3-1), Cahokia (2-2), Triad (3-1), Granite City (2-2), Belleville East (1-3)
Small school rankings (Class 1A-4A)
Also receiving votes: Red Bud (4-0), Nashville (2-2), Carlyle (1-3), Wood River (2-2), Freeburg (1-3), Wesclin (1-3)