The Rison Wildcats have all but locked up a spot in the 2A playoffs this season, but this week’s game against No. 2 Bearden could guarantee the No. 2 playoff seed in the 8-2A.

The Rison Wildcats have all but locked up a spot in the 2A playoffs this season, but this week’s game against No. 2 Bearden could guarantee the No. 2 playoff seed in the 8-2A.


That second seed goes to the bottom half of the bracket opposite of top-ranked Junction City. The 8-2A third playoff seed will likely travel to Junction City in the second round of the playoffs.


Rison (6-1, 3-1 in 8-2A) owns a commanding 37-13 series advantage over Bearden (5-1, 4-1), but the Bears have won the last two meetings by six and eight points.


The Wildcats will not have junior slotback Chris Leaks, who was ejected last week at Parkers Chapel. Rison rolled up 366 rushing yards with junior Bryson Marks accounting for 253 yards and four touchdowns on 19 carries.


Bearden lost three fumbles and generated just five first downs and 130 yards last week in a 39-0 loss to Junction City. Seniors Devontae Ross and James Clowers should return this week from injuries.


Little Rock Hall at Sheridan


At this point of the season, the primary concern for Sheridan head coach Louis Campbell is his own team. Not who the Yellowjackets play.


"We have to improve the things we are bad at," Campbell said. "We have to protect the ball, eliminate the turnovers and score when we have the opportunity.


"We have to take of our own house first."


Hall, which is 0-6-1, lost 42-40 to Sheridan in last season’s opener.


"They’ve had a tough year as well," Campbell said of the Warriors. "They’ve got good athletes and I believe they are putting in a new system too and that takes time."


Last week, Sheridan lost 34-7 to Parkview to drop to 1-6 overall and 0-4 in the 6A-South.


"Sooner or later, you have to see what kind of leadership you have," Campbell said of the team’s six-game losing streak. "We’ve got a lot of guys that haven’t given up.


"They’ve maintain their positive attitude and as a coach, you can’t ask for a lot more."


Helena-West Helena Central at Stuttgart


There is currently a four-way tie for first place in the 2-4A.


It includes: Stuttgart, Newport, Central Arkansas Christian and Helena-West Helena Central, who are all 3-1 in the conference.


Stuttgart (4-3, 3-1) will host Central tonight at Ned Moseley Stadium.


"We don’t know how it is going to unravel," Stuttgart head coach Vince Perrin said. "…We control our own destiny. If we can win out and Newport wins out, then we are sitting in second place."


Newport defeated Stuttgart 22-21 on Oct. 10.


"I’m proud of our kids of staying focused and playing hard," Perrin said. "We are taking it on a week-to-week basis and focused on who we are playing.


"I’m sure it is in the back of everybody’s mind, but we have to take care of business on Friday night."


Central shutout Lonoke in the final 15 minutes last week to escape with a two-point triumph. Stuttgart shutout Riverview 7-0 last week, while senior Malik Brasfield ran for 117 yards.


The Ricebirds have won four of their last five games after starting out the season 0-2.


"The kids have grasped on to the offense," Perrin said. "We have gotten better at our special teams and I think we have finally got kids settled in where they can help the best."


McGehee at Lake Village Lakeside


The McGehee Owls will look to stretch their winning streak to five games as they travel to Lakeside on Friday.


McGehee (5-2, 4-0 8-3A) defeated Fouke 47-20 last week.


Lakeside’s only win of the season was over Drew Central on Sept. 26. The Beavers are 1-6 and 0-4 in the conference.


The Owls won the last meeting at Lake Village 30-0 in 2011.


Beekman Charter (La.) at Woodlawn


Coming off what head coach Zach Branch called a "huge win" over Strong, Woodlawn will go outside the 8-2A Conference for a late-season nonconference game against Beekman Charter of Bastrop.


Woodlawn (5-2) could have chosen not to fill its open week, but Branch said he’s happy his team will be playing.


"Knowing my kids, if I didn’t have a game scheduled for this Friday, we would have terrible practices," he said.


Hermitage defeated Beekman, which is in its first year of varsity football, last week by a 44-16 final score. Even still, Branch isn’t expecting his team to look past the Tigers.


"I put out some challenges to clean up some things and do some things better," he said.


Fordyce at Drew Central


Two teams at close to opposite ends of the pecking order in the 6-3A Conference will meet at tonight at Drew Central.


After a disappointing second half last week against Smackover, Fordyce (3-4, 3-1 in 6-3A) will look to bounce back and keep the pressure on the Buckaroos and McGehee at the top of the standings. Meanwhile, Drew Central (0-7, 0-4) will look to break a 39-game losing streak.


"Having Drew Central after Smackover, not that it’s an easy game, but they’re not as good as Smackover," said Fordyce head coach Tim Rodgers. "Our kids know its an easier game, so they are a little looser. They know they can make mistakes and still probably win the game."


Despite not having a win in his first season as head coach, Steven Moore believes his squad can hang with the Redbugs, so long as the Pirates play to their ability.


"If we play our best, I think we can stay with them for a while," he said. "I still don’t think we’ve played our best. There have been times we’ve played decent, and there have been other times when it’s been, quite honestly, nothing less than horrible. …


"It’s going to take some time, but I think we’re moving in the right direction."