As quarterback Ben Balman goes, so goes Veritas Christian High's eight-man football team.
Balman has been nursing an ankle injury this week during the Eagles' preparation for tonight's regular-season finale against Belton, Mo., Heartland.
"We think he'll be ready to go," Veritas coach Doug Bennett said, "but we have to be careful with him."
Kickoff will be 7 p.m. at the Youth Sports Inc. fields.
Last week against defending Kansas Christian Athletic Assn. champion St. Mary's Academy, the Eagles were trailing by eight points when Balman was knocked out of the game due to an ankle injury. Without Balman in the lineup, St. Mary's posted three straight touchdowns on the way to a 48-28 victory.
Bennett may not even need Balman tonight, however, because Heartland doesn't figure to offer much resistance. The suburban Kansas City school is fielding a football team for the first time this fall with predictable results.
Against St. Mary's, for example, the eight-man euthanasia rule went into effect after the KCAA powerhouse had rolled to a 50-0 halftime bulge over the fledgling Mustangs.
Veritas (4-4) will meet the loser of tonight's St. Mary's Academy-Topeka Cair Paravel game in Tuesday's playoff opener. Cair Paravel blanked the Eagles, 40-0, in the second game of the season.