HOUGHTON - As the high school football season turns past the halfway point, there are several Copper Country teams with work to do starting this weekend.
Inter-local games mean there are only four games including area teams this weekend, but tonight's two are serious grudge matches in particular.
Tonight at Agassiz Field, Calumet hosts Hancock in a battle of 1-3 teams. The Copper Kings got back on track with a 28-15 road win at Houghton last Friday, while Hancock's only victory remains a home blowout of Baraga in Week 2. Both teams have faced some tremendous challenges over the first half of the season. Calumet's three conquerors (Northland Pines, Negaunee and Ishpeming) are all undefeated, while two of Hancock's (Northland Pines and L'Anse) are still perfect through four weeks and the third (Gogebic Miners) is 3-1.
Hancock's last win in the series was in 2003, which is also the last time Calumet finished with a losing record.
L'Anse can clinch just its second winning season in the last 13 years when it meets Keweenaw Bay rival Baraga Friday at Osterman Athletic Complex.
The tables have turned between the two teams. Baraga has won seven of the last nine meetings, but is 0-4 for the first time since 2000.
Two more games are set for Saturday. Lake Linden-Hubbell hosts Ontonagon at Warner Athletic Field. The threadbare Gladiators did not suit up for their Week 4 game against Forest Park, but they'll give it a go Saturday for the Lakes' Homecoming.
LL-H is looking for a bounceback game after getting dumped 39-12 in Bessemer last Friday by the Gogebic Miners.
In another Saturday game, Houghton hits the road to play West Iron County. Though the Gremlins are 0-4, their offensive and defensive output did improve on their two-game homestand. They'll face a Wykon team that blew out Ironwood 55-12 last week in Iron River.