Here's a look at Week 3 (Sept. 2) area prep football matchups:

HANNIBAL PIRATES VS. BOONVILLE PIRATES

Scouting the Pirates:

Hannibal came away from a loss at Quincy Notre Dame Saturday, Aug. 27 with a few good places to build. The loss was a learning experience, especially for some younger talent who stepped up when more experienced players nursed injuries. The status of those players, including star running back Shamar Moore, will determine what happens Saturday when Hannibal plays conference foe Boonville. Hannibal has won four in a row against the central Missouri team and Boonville has trended down in the past five years. Hannibal’s strong defensive game will be a challenge for Boonville.

Scouting the (other) Pirates:

The other Pirates in this contest are off to a slow start this season, scoring just 19 points in the first two games, both losses. But don’t go to sleep on Boonville. Quarterback Nick Zeitlow threw for more than 1,000 yards last season and has three years of experience. His arm could cause some trouble for Hannibal. In the end though, expect Hannibal to come in hungry to avenge last week’s loss and expose weaknesses in Boonville’s game.

Last meeting:

Hannibal 51, Boonville 7
Sept. 4, 2015

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Scouting the Panthers:

The Panthers rebounded in a big way from a tough Week One loss by beating the daylights out of Bowling Green in Week Two. The 17 seniors who lead the team will no doubt want to keep that trend going. Quarterback Brock Malone had a standout game in Week Two. The success of the run game started with Malone, who ran for three touchdowns in Week Two. Combined with running back Peyton Plunkett, Palmyra’s run game looks downright scary. But it’s been the boys up front that have provided the room to run. “My line blocked to perfection,” Malone said of his O-line. The Cougars will have a tough time stopping what’s been working for the Panthers.  

Scouting the Cougars:

The results don’t tell the full story for the Highland Cougars, who are 0-2 after facing two tough teams in Centralia and Brookfield in back-to-back weeks. While Palmyra will likely lean on its running game, Highland has a talented quarterback whose arm can cause trouble. Look for Palmyra to step up its pass coverage even more with the possibility of a strong throwing game.

Last meeting:

Palmyra 48, Highland 6
Sept. 4, 2015

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Scouting the Tigers:

The Tigers of Mark Twain took one on the chin Friday night, when it lost a heartbreaker to Hallsville 27-16 — the team’s first regular-season loss since 2014. Expect the Tigers to bounce back in a big way against North Callaway, a .500 team over the past three seasons. The defense will certainly create a better seal in Week Three, after allowing two touchdowns in the final three minutes in Week Two. The Tigers have multiple scoring threats, and they will all need to be in top form facing a defense that got a boost of confidence in Week Two. The discipline of the Tigers will be tested by North Callaway, but that’s something coach Karl Asbury has instilled in players since day one.

Scouting the Thunderbirds:

Not much is known about the North Callaway Thunderbirds. They are coming off a much-needed victory at Tipton with a strong performance by the defense limiting the Cardinals to 31 yards in the first half. Expect that same coverage against Mark Twain Friday night. 

Last meeting:

Mark Twain 49, North Callaway 12
Sept. 18, 2015