Winamac’s dominating football team has its eyes on repeating as a sectional champion.
The Class A No. 3 Warriors will have get past No. 7 Whiting tonight in a semifinal game to do so.
The Warriors (10-0) face the Oilers (9-1) at 8 p.m. EST tonight in a clash of ranked teams. The game was moved back to 8 o’clock since Whiting is located in the central time zone and taking into account rush-hour traffic in the Region.
The winner will face the winner between West Central (7-3) at Culver (4-6) in next week’s final.
Winamac is 2-0 all-time against Whiting in football, with the two wins coming in cluster play in 1983 and 1984.
“They have been a good program,” Warriors coach Tim Roth noted.
The Oilers have won three sectional titles, the last coming in 1997. They won a regional in 1996. Roth recalled of outstanding sectional battles the Oilers had with Brad Urban’s West Central teams in the middle part of the last decade.
Whiting’s lone blemish this season was a 30-20 loss to Class 2A River Forest in Week 8. The Oilers bounced back with a 34-14 win in Week 9 over Lake Station, the lone common opponent with the Warriors. The Warriors blasted Lake Station 73-14 last week in sectional play in a game Roth was miffed why the Fighting Eagles chose to not punt the ball no matter the position on the field or the yards needed to gain.
Whiting quarterback A.J. Veloz has completed 59.1 percent of his passes for 1,726 yards and 10 touchdowns to go with six interceptions. Petruf Martin has 36 catches for 525 yards and 4 TDs, and Keegan Rooke has 32 catches for 506 yards and 4 TDs.
Ethan Young is the leading rusher with 1,497 yards and 21 TDs and is averaging 6.8 yards per carry.
“They’ve got the complete package,” Roth said. “Their quarterback has thrown for 5,000 yards in his career. Their tailback has rushed for over 1,000 yards this season. We hope we’ve got things to stop them or slow them down.