All game times 7:30 p.m. unless noted:
Bryan Station vs. Lafayette (at Tates Creek)
Records: No. 21 Bryan Station 5-2 (lost to Scott County 37-25 last week); No. 31 Lafayette 5-3 (beat Paul Dunbar 31-7)
Radio: WLAP-AM 630
Big-game stumbles: After starting the season 5-0, Bryan Station has stubbed its toe against Henry Clay and Scott County. Coach Oliver Lucas has been most disappointed with his defense. Despite its 5-2 record, Bryan Station has given up more yards (2,243) than it has gained (2,214). The offense isn't blameless. It has 19 turnovers compared to the opponents' 15.
What a rush: Bryan Station's Tevin McCaden leads the state in rushing, averaging 239 yards a game. He has 1,672 yards and 20 TDs.
Happy returns: Lafayette's Marlon Johnson and Eric Shaw Jr. have each returned two kickoffs for TDs. Shaw is also averaging 21 yards on four interception returns. He's also dangerous on punt returns, not to mention as a running back and receiver.
Key to victory: If Bryan Station is to end an 8-year skid against Lafayette, it must learn to finish. The Defenders led Lafayette 12-0 midway through the fourth quarter last year, but lost 14-12. Last week Bryan Station led Scott County 25-24 going into the fourth quarter, but lost 32-25.
East Jessamine at Lexington Catholic
Records: No. 127 East Jessamine 3-4 (lost to West Jessamine 13-12); No. 22 Lexington Catholic 4-3 (lost to Boyle County 21-13)
Radio: WJMR-AM 1380
Accenting the run: East Jessamine has passed for only 111 yards this season, but the Jaguars have had a strong 1-2 running combination in Austin Hager (805 yards, 6 TDs) and Cameron Thomas (720 yards, 6 TDs).
Defending their honor: LexCath's defense, which has had its problems this season, may have found itself against Boyle County. After giving up three quick TDs, the Knights buckled up and blanked the potent Rebels over the last 30 minutes. Andrew Gathy had a couple of big sacks. Bill Jacoby, Nate Letton and Benton Hupman led in tackles.
Key to victory: If East Jessamine is to pull a shocker, it must win the battle in the trenches. If it doesn't, the Jags' running game will have a difficult time finding traction against LexCath.
Henry Clay at Madison Central
Records: No. 18 Henry Clay 5-2 (lost to Clark County 12-6); No. 57 Madison Central 0-7 (lost to Tates Creek 35-21)
Looking for answers: Winless Madison Central is struggling on both sides of the ball. It has been outscored by an average of 38-12, and outgained 417 yards to 243 a game. Shane King and James Ballew have more than 600 all-purpose yards each to account for most of the pop in the offense.
Costly turnovers: Henry Clay rushed for 325 yards against Clark County last week, and outgained the Cardinals by 160 yards. But those numbers were negated by Henry Clay turnovers. The Devils had more interceptions (4) than completions (3), and they were 0-for-9 on third-down conversions.
Key to victory: When Henry Clay limits its turnovers, its offense is a productive machine. Its defense is the only one in town that's surrendered fewer than 100 points.
Raceland at Lexington Christian
Records: No. 121 Raceland 5-3 (beat Fairview 14-6); No. 33 LCA 61 (beat Paris 56-0)
Radio: WJMM-FM 99.1
Rams tough: Raceland has a history of giving LCA trouble, as it showed when it beat the Eagles during the regular season last year, and gave them a tussle in the playoffs before losing. QB Tyler Farley is a passing threat, having thrown for 1,033 yards and 9 TDs. Five receivers have at least 100 yards.
Record watch: LCA's Domonique Hayden needs 3 TDs to tie the state career record of 116 set by Kelvin Turner of Danville five years ago. Lucas Witt has pushed his career passing totals to 8,088 yards and 95 TDs, and Branden Burdette's receiving totals are now 120 catches, 2,248 yards and 33 TDs.
Key to victory: LCA's offense is a well-oiled machine. In the last two weeks, the Eagles have outscored Nicholas County and Paris by a combined 118-0. Raceland beat those same teams by a combined 53-14.
Scott Co. at Paul Dunbar
Records: No. 13 Scott County 6-1 (beat Bryan Station 37-25); No. 100 Dunbar 2-5 (lost to Lafayette 31-7)
Irresistible force: Scott County's ground attack is tough to contain because it has so many options and is so deceptive. Josh Walls (772 yards) and Marcus Hill (364) are fast and elusive. Brooks Barber (485) and Steven Travis (226) are strong and quick. And QB Tevin Buffin does a solid job orchestrating the show.
Bulldog pup: Freshman Paul Jones leads Dunbar with 420 all-purpose yards, including 156 on kickoff returns and 155 rushing. QB Trent Martin has thrown for 1,004 yards and 8 TDs.
Key to victory: It will take Dunbar's best game in two years to upset the Cardinals.
Tates Creek at Clark Co.
Records: No. 56 Tates Creek 4-3 (beat Madison Central 35-21); No. 52 Clark County 4-3 (beat Henry Clay 12-6)
Radio: WVLK-FM 101.5
Commodore convergence: Tates Creek Coach Mike Harmon saw signs of his offense striking a balance last week. Jontez Jones ran for 121 yards and 2 TDs. Dee Christopher threw for 121 yards and 2 TDs. LaRobert Bett and Jonathan Diliberto combined for 120 receiving yards and 2 TDs.
Surprise, surprise surprise: Clark County has upset Lafayette, Corbin and Henry Clay. Last week's win over then-No. 12 Henry Clay was the real shocker. The Devils were coming off a 27-6 win over Bryan Station, which romped past Clark County early in the season. Henry Clay also beat Scott County, which crushed Clark County 40-0.
Key to victory: Tates Creek's statistics suggest a close game against Clark County. The Commodores are averaging 28.3 points and giving up 27.6. They're averaging 272 yards a game and giving up 279.
Top state games
Sheldon Clark at Belfry: This game should identify best 3A team in mountains.
Conner at Ryle: After getting run over by Simon Kenton RB Miles Simpson last week, Ryle braces for Cougars QB Nick West.
Around the state
Coach takes a hit: In his 30 years of coaching football, Dale Anderson has always told his players that injuries are an unpredictable part of the game. Last week the Southwestern coach found out just how unpredictable.
Anderson was watching players go through a drill in front of him, while another group was practicing behind him. The next thing he knew, two players rolled into his left leg. "All of a sudden, I'm looking up at the sky and thinking, 'This isn't good.'"
To say the least.
Anderson suffered a torn ACL and MCL, along with a crushed tibia. He will undergo surgery next week.
When Southwestern beat Mercer County last Friday, Anderson sat in his pick-up truck behind the end zone, straining to see the field. So when the Warriors play cross-town rival Pulaski County Friday night, he plans to be in a golf cart on the sidelines where he can get a better look at what's going on.
Anderson, 51, has taken some good-natured kidding from his friends in coaching, helping him keep his sense of humor throughout his ordeal. He suggested to his doctor that instead of surgery he should get a peg leg. "It'd last as long as I didn't get termites," Anderson said with a laugh.