HAVILAND — As one of only 32 high school football teams in the state of Ohio still playing football on Friday night, Wayne Trace heads to Norwalk with nothing to lose. The Raiders tangle with the Flyers of Norwalk St. Paul in regional quarterfinal action.

The Flyers are coming off of their sixth straight Firelands Conference championship and have qualified for the playoffs in six straight seasons as well. Nevertheless, Raider head coach Mike Speice is looking forward to the opportunity to take the field in Week 11.

“We are excited about the chance to compete in the playoffs,” noted Speice, who will be leading the Raiders for the first time in the postseason. “The kids are looking forward to the chance to compete, and we want just to go over to Norwalk and have some fun and play hard.”

Norwalk St. Paul (10-0) has put up some impressive stats on the year, outscoring opponents 425-53 on the season overall while averaging 431 yards off offense a contest.

The Flyers, ranked No. 1 in the latest Associated Press Division VII poll, also have dominated in the first quarter this season; they have yet to allow a first quarter point while scoring 146.

“They have some very good athletes,” Speice said. “Their running backs have good speed, and the quarterback is very capable of throwing the ball. Up front, they aren’t very big but they come off of the ball very well. We know that defensively we are going to have stay in our assignments and we can’t make mistakes. When we get a chance to make a tackle, we need to make sure we finish it.”

Senior running back Thane Crabbs tops the Flyers with 881 rushing yards on 95 carries, including 14 touchdowns, while sophomore running back Cam Caizzo adds 645 yards on 62 carries with eight scores. Junior running Noah Good adds 598 yards on 88 tries with 10 touchdowns. Norwalk St. Paul will have senior Nick Lukasko as the signal caller, who has completed 69 of 98 passes for 1,451 yards and 15 scores.

“Offensively, they want to run the ball first,” Speice said. “They have the capability to hurt you through the air but running the ball is their priority.”

Defensively, Good tops the Flyers out of the linebacker position with 122 tackles that includes 14 tackles for a loss. Senior defensive tackle Luke Nickoli is second on the squad with 80 stops but led the team with 17 tackles for a loss and nine sacks. Junior linebacker Sam Meyer has 75 tackles followed by junior Eric Crabbs with 72 and senior Kurt Maxwell with 59.

“For us, it comes down to the basic principles of the game,” said the Raider coach. “First, we need to win the battle up front on both sides of the ball. Offensively, we have to take care of the football. Defensively, we need to get to the ball and make tackles. But, I want the kids to enjoy the experience and have some fun this week when all is said and done. This is an honor to be in the playoffs and these kids have worked hard to get to this point. Just go out and play and have some fun but take care of the little things in that process as well.”

GAME NOTES - Tickets for Friday’s 7:30 p.m. game will be sold at Wayne Trace for $8. All tickets at the gate are $9. Wayne Trace does receive a portion of its presale, so fans are encouraged to buy tickets in advance at Wayne Trace High School. Norwalk St. Paul is making its 19th appearance in the postseason in 2017. The Flyers were state champions in 2009 and have been state runners-up four times, the last of which was in 2014. Norwalk St. Paul ended the 2017 regular season with a 39-game win streak in Firelands Conference play and a 27-game win streak overall in regular season action. This season’s 10-0 record is the 10th time in school history that the Flyers have completed the regular season unbeaten.