NOTE: Each week, the swews4u.com sports editors; A.J. Gates (Grant County Herald Independent), Jason Nihles (Platteville Journal), Tom "Gunner" Gunnell (Republican Journal) and Erik Olson (The Richland Observer) will vote on the top prep gridiron performers of the week. Our combined vote will produce a weekly list of five "Friday Night Heroes." If you don't agree with our rankings or you feel we missed a standout performance, feel free to post a comment and plead your case.
HERO OF THE WEEK
Tim Fritz, QB (Potosi, Jr.) - The junior lefty completed 14-of-16 passes for 323 yards and three TDs in Potosi's 40-0 route of Cassville Saturday afternoon in the first game of the Six Rivers Jamboree at UW-Platteville's Ralph E. Davis Pioneer Stadium.
Potosi, the three-time reigning Six Rivers West champion, unveiled a new-look spread shotgun offense and Fritz was nearly flawless in his execution of it.
His 84-yard pitch and catch to fellow junior Jase Udelhofen gave the Chieftains a 28-0 lead early in the third quarter.
A year ago Potosi went 9-0 during the regular season by pounding the ball with all-state half back Dakota Runde (2,325 rushing yards, 23 rush TDs) running behind an all-senior offensive line that featured fellow all-state selection Cole Mish (6'7", 350 pounds). With Fritz and Potosi's new aerial assault the Chieftains have already shown the passing game will be featured prominently in 2011.
WEEK 1's OTHER FRIDAY NIGHT HEROES
Austyn Whitlatch, QB (Dodgeville, sr.) - completed 8-of-13 for 140 yards and two touchdowns without a pick, and also rushed for 111 yards and a nother score on 10 carries in Dodgeville's (1-0) season-opening victory at Fennimore (0-1).
Trae Mezera, RB (Lancaster, jr.) - only had six touches in Lancaster's 62-14 Week 1 route of Orfordville Parkview, but the junior fullback made the most of them. Mezera carried the ball five times for 160 yards and TDs, and also returned a first-quarter kickoff 75 yards for a touch and caught a 80-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter.
Troy Baker, RB (Lancaster, jr.) - just like his backfield mate Baker made the most of his limited opportunities in Friday's opener. The speedy junior piled up 161 yards and three touchdowns on just four carries, scoring on runs of 58, 13 and 89 yards.
Brandon Pierick, WR (Iowa-Grant, sr.) - caught three passes for 111 yards and two touchdowns, including the game-winning 60-yard post corner from senior Blake Welu with just 2:59 remaining in Friday's 19-14 victory at Randolph.
Logan Emendorfer, QB (Platteville, sr.) - 7-of-9, 121 yards, 2 TDs, 0 Int, 4 rush., 64 yards, 0 TD.
Merik Meythaler, QB (Black Hawk, jr.) - 8-of-12, 130 yards, 3 TDs, 0 Int
Chase Kruser, WR (Potosi, so.) - 8 rec., 170 yards, 0 TD
Brady Wilkerson, WR (Southwestern, sr.) - 3 rec., 111 yards, 2 TD