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WIAA state football: Brookfield Central's Drew Leszczynski

Waunakee's Jackson Madonia (48) stops Brookfield Central's Drew Leszczynski (2) late in the fourth quarter of the WIAA Division 2 Championship game at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis., Friday, Nov. 17, 2017. M.P. KING, STATE JOURNAL


Brookfield Central (12-1) vs. Mequon Homestead (13-0), 1 p.m. Friday

How they got here: Central, last year’s runner-up, avenged its 2017 loss with a 20-13 victory over defending champion Waunakee. Central has yet to win a state title, though this is the Lancers’ fifth finals trip. Homestead beat Marshfield (and the snow) last week, 12-7, to advance to its seventh state final and first since 2015, when the Highlanders won their second Division 2 title and fifth overall.

About the Lancers: Coach Jed Kennedy’s Central team dropped a Week 6 decision to Division 1 semifinalist Milwaukee Marquette, 28-22. The Lancers had to replace eight graduated starters, but back at quarterback of the single-wing offense is 6-1, 190-pound senior Drew Lesczynski, an all-state pick who will make his 40th start on Friday. He has thrown for 1,644 yards and 17 touchdowns and four interceptions and rushed for 639 yards and five scores. Junior all-state running back Rashad Lampkin (5-10, 190), pressed into a starting role as a sophomore, has turned that experience into a 2,120-yard, 30-touchdown senior season. Senior receiver Julian Banda (6-1, 190) has caught 50 passes for 760 yards. Senior Alec Mejchar (6-6, 230) is an all-state offensive lineman. The defense is led by 6-3, 215-pound junior linebacker Peter Murray (94 tackles) and 5-9, 160-ppund senior linebacker Connor Kolb (90 tackles).

About the Highlanders: Coach Dave Keel’s Homestead team has presented a balanced offensive attack, led by senior quarterback Emory Weeden (6-0, 185), who has completed 64 percent of his passes for 1,142 yards and 16 touchdowns with two interceptions. Keel has a pair of speedy and talented running backs in senior Willie Garrison (6-0, 185, 1,134 yards, 13 TDs), Jared Schneider (6-1, 175, 873 yards, 16 TDs), and Weeden has rushed for 532 yards and 11 scores. The defense is anchored by senior all-state lineman Jake Raddatz (6-3, 230), who has 47 tackles and six sacks. The tackle leaders are senior linebackers George Lampen (6-2, 215, 75 tackles, four sacks) and David Beaulieu (63 tackles, eight sacks).

— Art Kabelowsky

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Wisconsin State Journal prep sports editor Art Kabelowsky has traversed the state to cover sports while working for daily papers in Fort Atkinson, Racine, La Crosse, Milwaukee and Baraboo.