Sports

WACO faces loaded schedule in 2019

Warriors prepare for battle in brutal eight-man district

Union file photo

Wide receiver Drew Kissell makes a catch during a WACO home game last season.
Union file photo Wide receiver Drew Kissell makes a catch during a WACO home game last season.
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WAYLAND — In 2018, Class 8-Man District 4 was one of the toughest in the league, but the WACO football team still managed to scoop up six wins on the year. Now in 2019, the Warriors will gear up for a schedule that includes a defending district champion, a defending state champion and a playoff team from Missouri.

The Warriors will be entering the season after a 6-3 year, going 5-3 in district play. All three of their losses came to teams who finished 7-2 or better.

WACO will return a fair amont of talent from last season, but they will be playing without Colton Horak for the first time in four years. The 2019 graduate scored 27 of the team’s 48 touchdowns last year.

As highlighted in the Wednesday edition of The Union, the Warriors will start the year off in unfamiliar territory, when they open up with North Shelby Missouri on Aug. 30. North Shelby went 6-3 in the regular season last season and made the Missouri state playoffs.

After that game, the Warriors go on a stretch of playing four of their next five games at home, but it’s one of the toughest five-games stretches that any eight-man team will face.

The Warriors will have their home opener on Sept. 6 against Janesville, a team they beat 25-14 on the road in 2018.

The next week is homecoming week for the Warriors. They’ll take on defending state champion New London, one of their three losses from last season.

The Warriors will head to Montezuma one week later, and then return home for potential revenge games against their other two losses from last season. On Sept. 27, they’ll host defending district champion Iowa Valley, a team WACO fell to 46-32 last season. On October 4, they’ll take on Hartwick-Ladora-Victor, a squad that beat WACO 48-36 en route to a third-place finish in the district.

WACO will play two of their final three games on the road, but only one of those will be out of Henry County. The Warriors hit the road to play English Valleys on October 11, return home to take on Lone Tree on Oct. 18 and finish the year in Winfield for rivalry week against Winfield-Mt. Union on Oct. 25. The Warriors defeated all three of those schools last year.

Listed below is the full WACO football schedule with district games being marked with an asterisk.

Aug. 30 @ North Shelby (Mo)

Sept. 6 vs. Janesville

Sept. 13 vs. New London (Homecoming)*

Sept. 20 @ Montezuma*

Sept. 27 vs. Iowa Valley*

Oct. 4 vs. Hartwick-Victor-Ladora*

Oct. 11 @ English Valleys*

Oct. 18 vs. Lone Tree*

Oct. 25 @ Winfield-Mt. Union*