Carrollton Hawks quarterback Hunter Flowers hands the ball off the Garrett Settles against the Beardstown Tigers in week two of the season.

Calhoun in previous action. (Photo by Bonnie Snyders)

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CARROLLTON - The season is still young as week three of the 2018 football season approaches.

However, it’s hard to fathom that the big annual game between the Carrollton Hawks and the Calhoun Warriors will feature both teams being winless at 0-2.

The Hawks fell to the Triopia Trojans 22-14 in week one, and last week they were stunned by Beardstown 40-6 in a result that shocked a decent portion of the state. Calhoun had an uphill task going up against the No. 4-ranked Camp Point Central Panthers losing 42-0 and seven days ago gave up 42 points again to Routt Catholic falling 42-15.

On paper, this won’t be as rosy as a game previously anticipated, but the stakes will still be high. Friday night at Carrollton High School will be a must-win affair for either school. Very rarely do teams start out 0-3 make the playoffs. However, the Hawks did a short time ago in 2016.

“We’d like to have an undefeated season, but that’s the door now. So what we have to do is focus on how we can still meet our other goals,” Flowers said. “Our other goal is to win the [WIVC] South, and we have to get back on track. I think the loss[es] to Triopia and Beardstown, although it didn’t leave a great taste in our mouths, I feel like [they have] prepared us in so many ways for the South conference.”

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“We’re not happy where we are record-wise, but we got a darn good football team, and we’ve just not put it all together yet,” Carrollton head coach Nick Flowers said. “We’re focused on getting back to what we do well, not necessarily our record. Our boys are as focused as ever, and we’re looking forward to this matchup.”

The Warriors come into this game having given up 42 points in their first two games. Carrollton hasn’t lost to them since 2009. Calhoun head coach Aaron Elmore stresses that his team needs to take care of the ball while cutting mistakes.

"The keys for us is about eliminating turnovers and penalties. They have plagued us this season so far,” Calhoun head coach Aaron Elmore said. “Injuries have led to inconsistency and uncertainty. We have had more young players thrown into the mix, and they show signs of greatness, but it's difficult for them at times. We have to limit Carrollton's big play abilities. We must tackle well in open spaces."

The weather may or may not play a factor in tonight's game.

Initially, it looked as though there would be rain and thunderstorms going on throughout the day in the St. Louis and Riverbender area, including Carrollton. Now it appears that there’s a half chance there could be no rain looking at the local weather radar. It’s still advised that people who plan on attending tonight's game bring raincoats and umbrellas.

The game will be broadcast live on Riverbender.com. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Calhoun lined up on the field. (Photo by Bonnie Snyders)

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