Wheelers start loaded district slate on heels of marquee win over Fremont-Mills

(Audubon) The Audubon Wheelers rose three spots in the rankings this week to #6 in 8-Player. The Wheelers are 2-1 with wins over East Mills and Fremont-Mills along with a one-point setback against #3 St. Mary’s, Remsen. This Friday night they’ll host 1-1 Exira-EHK.

The 8-Player District 8 schedule is an extremely tough one with five of the eight teams either being ranked or receiving votes. For the Wheelers the district slate starts with the defending district champion Exira-EHK.  “They are the champion until proven otherwise. It’s always a fun local rivalry. It’s always a fun atmosphere. I’m sure a lot of people will be in attendance. They do a lot of nice things. Coach Tom Petersen is good at what he does. They replace a lot of starters with still more upperclassmen. Their program just keeps churning out athletes. They have some big kids up front and the coach’s kid Tyler Petersen throws a good ball.”

Coach Sean Birks illustrates his team’s opponent this week made a huge step forward from Week 1 to Week 2, setting up a really big early season matchup. “Our kids know each other. Any time it’s a rivalry you can typically throw out the records and this is one of those cases where year in year out it’s been a knock down drag out fight. Last year it came down to the final possession. We came up short and they won the district title. It was week three, but we know it had a big impact on the district title and we know that could very well be the case again this year.”

The Wheeler pulled off one of the biggest wins that anyone has posted in the state this season regardless of class when they shutout 2nd ranked Fremont-Mills last Friday night. Coach Birks points to his team’s physicality as a big difference.

Birks lists guys like seniors Luke Mosinski, Eric Hermansen, Tanner Petersen as standouts on the defensive lines. Some sophomores are starting to emerge too as either offensive linemen and/or defensive linemen such as Joey Schramm and Alex Foran.

The Wheelers held Fremont-Mills to under 120 yards and handed them their first regular season loss in over a calendar year. Audubon’s matchup with Exira-EHK will air on KSOM at 7:00 p.m. Pregame coverage starts shortly after 5:00 p.m. with the In the Huddle show.