By Chris Johnson

Sports Correspondent

The match-up the Eastland-Pearl City Wildcats worked through on Friday, Sept. 9, against the Pecatonica Indians played out about how it was to be expected. The home team dismantled their Winnebago County visitors, 49-8. They controlled the line of scrimmage and ran the ball efficiently. The Indians could barely stand to fight as they saw their league-trailing defensive descend even farther. Through three games this season, Pecatonica has given up 160 points in losses.

EPC picked apart Pecatonica after grabbing control early. The Indians could not establish drives as they struggled to move the ball through the air and around the edges.

EPC’s flowing defense kept the visitors from establishing any north-south movement throughout the evening. Hard hits and pass defenses were commonplace in the Friday night NUIC Northwest win for the Wildcats.

The 3-0 mark pushes EPC into a three-way tie for first place in the conference. The East Dubuque Warriors have kept pace with the Wildcats as have the Forreston Cardinals. On Friday night, the Cardinals shut-out the Dakota Indians, 21-0, knocking them one game back in the standings. East Dubuque knocked off Galena, 28-7.

Lena-Winslow sits with Dakota and Amboy-LaMoille, one game back.

Pecatonica hosts West Carroll this Friday night, Sept. 16. The following week, the Class 1A top-ranked Stockton Blackhawks swing by.

EPC travels to Polo this Friday night, Sept. 16. The Marcos were crushed in their Friday night NUIC Upstate battle with Stockton, 50-6. Shaking the cobwebs off won’t be easily accomplished for Polo, as the hard-hitting cross-conference leader EPC pays a visit.

In week six, EPC faces Galena. The Pirates are winless this season and are tied with West Carroll and Pecatonica for last in the Northwest.

The Sept. 30 match with Dakota is expected to be a defensive showcase. Dakota will need to find ways to develop an extra dose of offense, as EPC comes in.

The final stretch of the season will determine the playoff readiness for EPC. Following an Oct. 7 match with the Amboy-LaMoille Clippers, the Wildcats host Forreston. The NUIC Title could be all but secured for EPC, with a win over the State-ranked Cardinals, in their week eight game.

The regular season comes to a close at East Dubuque, where EPC faces the current NUIC Northwest Co-leader, in a tune-up for the post season, which should begin in Pearl City on Friday, Oct. 28.

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