Kpreps Game Day - Week 8 (District Scenarios)

Eli Jellison & South Central are already champions of an otherwise even district. (Jennifer Godfrey)
By: Matt Gilmore & Conor Nicholl for
Oct 19, 2018

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We’ve analyzed the records, completed all the calculations, and researched all of the district tie-breakers. The result is this complete narrative of the district playoff scenarios for every district in the state – all classifications. 

**Team records are listed as follows: (Overall record; District record)

See the Kpreps District Standings for complete listings.

Please feel free to contact us if you know something is incorrect –

Class 3A:

District 1 – Galena travels to Parsons with the winner claiming the district title. Even with a loss, Parsons could secure the runner-up spot in the district as long as Caney Valley handles Baxter Springs. Should Caney and Frontenac each win and Parsons lose, the Vikings would still be the runner-up by virtue of the having the most district margin points. If Parsons loses to Galena, Frontenac wins, and Caney Valley loses to Baxter Springs, Frontenac would be the district runner-up. Columbus can still sneak into the playoffs by beating Frontenac and hoping Caney Valley takes care of business against Baxter Springs. To be assured of a playoff spot, Columbus must beat Frontenac by at least 20 points.

Galena (7-0; 4-0) at Parsons (6-1; 3-1)
Frontenac (4-3; 2-2) at Columbus (1-6; 1-3)
Baxter Springs (1-6; 0-4) at Caney Valley (5-2; 2-2)

District 2 – Prairie View has already clinched the District 2 championship as its four district wins cannot be matched. The winner of Anderson County and Burlington will claim one of the four playoff spots, as will Girard if the Trojans can take care of winless Osawatomie. If Iola pulls off the upset against Prairie View, then the Mustangs are in. Should Iola lose, a playoff spot would likely come down the Mustangs and the loser of Burlington and Anderson County. Iola holds the head-to-head tie-breaker with Burlington, but lost to Anderson County, meaning the Mustangs should be rooting for the Bulldogs to win on Friday night – just in case.

Iola (2-5; 2-2) at Prairie View (6-1; 4-0)
Anderson County (2-5; 2-2) at Burlington (4-3; 2-2)
Osawatomie (0-7; 0-4) at Girard (4-3; 2-2)


District 3 – Topeka Hayden has already claimed the District 3 championship. The Wildcats four district wins can only be matched by Perry-Lecompton, but the Wildcats hold the head-to-head tie-breaker over the Kaws after Hayden’s win last week. Perry-Lecompton has secured the runner-up spot. Even if the Kaws improbably lose to Bishop Ward and fall to 3-2 in district play, they still hold the head-to-head tie-breaker over both Santa Fe Trail and Jefferson West. Santa Fe Trail and Jeff West play each other with the winner claiming third place in the district, while the losing will advance to the playoffs as the 4th place finisher in District 3.

Topeka Hayden (5-2; 4-0) at Wellsville (3-4; 1-3)
Bishop Ward (0-7; 0-4) at Perry-Lecompton (5-2; 3-1)
Jefferson West (5-2; 2-2) at Santa Fe Trail (4-3; 2-2)

District 4 – Sabetha has already claimed the District 4 title as the Blue Jays’ four district wins can only be matched by Marysville – a team they beat in Week 4. Marysville has secured the runner-up spot. Even if the Bulldogs lose to Hiawatha, they still hold the head-to-head tie-breaker over both Holton and Wamego. Holton and Wamego play each other with the winner claiming third place in the district, while the losing will advance to the playoffs as the 4th place finisher in District 4.

Sabetha (7-0; 4-0) at Royal Valley (2-5; 1-3)
Hiawatha (1-6; 0-4) at Marysville (5-2; 3-1)
Holton (3-4; 2-2) at Wamego (4-3; 2-2)

District 5 – Smoky Valley has already clinched the District 5 championship. Even with a loss to winless Rock Creek, the Vikings can finish no worse than 4-1 and only Chapman can equal that record. Smoky Valley holds the head-to-head over Chapman with a 30-22 win back in Week 6. Chapman is the district runner-up with a win over Halstead. If the Irish beat Halstead and Hesston takes care of Clay Center, Halstead will finish in fourth place in the district behind the third place Swathers. Halstead can ensure a district runner-up finish by beating Chapman by at least 12 points. Clay Center’s playoff hopes are still alive, but the Tigers must win at Hesston and hope Halstead beats Chapman.

Smoky Valley (7-0; 4-0) at Rock Creek (0-7; 0-4)
Chapman (6-1; 3-1) at Halstead (4-3; 2-2)
Clay Center (1-6; 1-3) at Hesston (4-3; 2-2)

District 6 – Andale has already clinched the District 6 title by virtue of wins over Clearwater and Wichita Collegiate. The top-ranked Indians take on Cheney on Friday with the host Cardinals already having secured fourth place in the district. The key game on Friday has Clearwater at Collegiate with the winner taking the district runner-up spot and the loser finishing as the third qualifier from the district.

Andale (7-0; 4-0) at Cheney (2-5; 2-2)
Clearwater (4-3; 3-1) at Wichita Collegiate (5-2; 3-1)
Haven (1-6; 0-4) at Wichita Trinity (0-7; 0-4)

District 7 – Pratt has clinched as the district championship as its four district wins can only be matched by Hugoton, which the Greenbacks defeated 42-0 in Week 6. Hugoton has already clinched a playoff spot, but can secure the runner-up finish with a win at Holcomb. On the flip side, if the Longhorns win, they are in the playoffs with a chance to defend their title. Nickerson can get in with an upset of Pratt, but if the Panthers lose they must hope for a either a Kingman loss to winless Larned or a Holcomb loss to Hugoton. Kingman can still reach the playoffs with a win over Larned, a Pratt win over Nickerson, and a Holcomb win over Hugoton.

Pratt (7-0; 4-0) at Nickerson (2-5; 2-2)
Hugoton (3-4; 3-1) at Holcomb (3-4; 2-2)
Kingman (2-5; 1-3) at Larned (0-7; 0-4)

District 8 – Scott City has clinched the District 8 championship with last week’s 35-12 win over Colby. Meanwhile, Colby has clinched the runner-up spot with its 3-1 record including wins over each of the 2-2 teams, Beloit and Concordia.  Beloit and Concordia have both beaten Goodland, which means the Trojans and Panthers are in the playoffs. Both schools are 2-2, so whichever one finishes with the better record will take third place with the other fourth place. Beloit has the easier matchup taking on Russell, while Concordia gets undefeated Scott City. Should the Beloit and Concordia finish with the same district record, Beloit would be the third-place team by virtue of their 16-6 win over the Panthers last week.

Scott City (7-0; 4-0) at Concordia (3-4; 2-2)
Beloit (4-3; 2-2) at Russell (2-5; 0-4)
Goodland (1-6; 1-3) at Colby (6-1; 3-1)


Class 2A:

District 1 – Humboldt has already clinched the District 3 championship. The Cubs’ four district wins can only be matched by Jayhawk-Linn, but Humboldt holds the head-to-head tie-breaker over the Jayhawks with a 73-0 win in Week 4. Jayhawk-Linn has clinched a playoff spot, and can sew up the district runner-up with a win at Riverton. A Riverton win makes the Rams the district runners-up.  Riverton can still get in with a loss as long as Southeast-Cherokee also loses and the Rams don’t lose to Jayhawk-Linn by more than six points. Southeast-Cherokee has also clinched a playoff spot as even with a loss that forces a three-way tie between the Lancers, Riverton, and Erie, Southeast would finish with the most district margin points. Erie’s only district victory came against Riverton, giving the Red Devils the head-to-head tie-breaker over the Rams should the two teams end up with a 2-3 district record. For Erie to reach the playoffs, they must beat Northeast-Arma, have Riverton lose, and Southeast upset Humboldt. Erie can also sneak in by passing Riverton in margin points if there is a three-way tie for third place with Southeast.

Southeast-Cherokee (4-3; 2-2) at Humboldt (7-0; 4-0)
Jayhawk-Linn (5-2; 3-1) at Riverton (2-5; 2-2)
Northeast-Arma (0-7; 0-4) at Erie (2-5; 1-3)

District 2 – Silver Lake has already clinched the District 2 title by virtue of wins over Osage City and McLouth. The winner of the McLouth and Osage City matchup on Friday will be the district runner-up, with the loser taking third place. West Franklin will travel to Central Heights with the winner advancing to the playoffs as the fourth-place finisher in District 2, while the loser does not make the bracket.

Silver Lake (7-0; 4-0) at Oskaloosa (0-7; 0-4)
McLouth (4-3; 3-1) at Osage City (6-1; 3-1)
West Franklin (3-4; 1-3) at Central Heights (2-5; 1-3)

District 3 – The situation in District 3 is simple. Maur Hill-Mount Academy will travel to Nemaha Central with the winner crowed as district champion and the loser as runner-up. Similarly, Riverside will travel to Pleasant Ridge where the winner qualifies as the third-place team out of District 3, and the loser qualifies as the fourth-place team.  

Maur Hill-Mount Academy (6-1; 4-0) at Nemaha Central (5-2; 4-0)
Riverside (2-5; 2-2) at Pleasant Ridge (4-3; 2-2)
Atchison County (1-6; 0-4) at Horton (0-7; 0-4)

District 4 – The four qualifying playoff teams out of District 4 have already been determined, but their order of finish has not. Riley County, Rossville, and Southeast of Saline are all 3-1 entering Friday’s action, while Mission Valley is 2-2. St. Marys is 1-3 and could tie Mission Valley in the standings, but the Vikings hold the head-to-head tie-breaker over the Bears via last week’s 22-8 win. Riley County can secure the district title by beating St. Marys by 10 or more points.

Riley County (5-2; 3-1) at St. Marys (2-5; 1-3)
Council Grove (1-6; 0-4) at Southeast of Saline (6-1; 3-1)
Mission Valley (5-2; 2-2) at Rossville (5-2; 3-1)

District 5 – Douglass, Fredonia, and Belle Plaine have already clinched the top three playoffs spots from District 5, but the order is yet to be determined. Douglass hosts Belle Plaine tonight with a chance to win the outright title. The Bulldogs can also win the district with a loss to Belle Plaine as long as Fredonia beats Neodesha. Belle Plaine can win the district with a win over Douglass and a Fredonia loss to Neodesha. Fredonia can only finish as high as the district runner-up. Meanwhile, Eureka will travel to Cherryvale with the winner earning the final playoff spot as the fourth-place team out of the district.

Belle Plaine (4-3; 3-1) at Douglass (6-1; 4-0)
Fredonia (5-2; 3-1) at Neodesha (0-7; 0-4)
Eureka (2-5; 1-3) at Cherryvale (3-4; 1-3)

District 6 – District 6 has been one of the strongest district in terms of quality teams, and entering Friday it may be the most clear cut. Conway Springs (4-0) is the district champion having already posted wins over Hutchinson Trinity (3-1) and Chaparral (3-1). Trinity and Chaparral meet tonight in Hutchinson with the winner claiming the district runner-up spot and the loser advancing as the third-place team. Meanwhile, Conway Springs will host rival Garden Plain. The Owls have already sewn up a fourth-place finish in the district.

Garden Plain (5-2; 2-2) at Conway Springs (7-0; 4-0)
Chaparral (6-1; 3-1) at Trinity Catholic (6-1; 3-1)
Whitewater-Remington (0-7; 0-4) at Wichita Independent (0-7; 0-4)

District 7 – Cimarron has clinched as the district championship as its four district wins can only be matched by Lakin, but the Blue Jays defeated the Broncs 18-14 in Week 6. Lakin (3-1) has already clinched the runner-up spot having beaten both Sterling (2-2) and Southwestern Heights (2-2).  That leaves Southwestern Heights and Sterling in the final two playoff spots. The Mustangs and Black Bears meet tonight with the winner qualifying as the third-place team and the loser claiming the fourth-place spot.

Cimarron (6-1; 4-0) at Ellinwood (3-4; 1-3)
Southwestern Heights (2-5; 2-2) at Sterling (2-5; 2-2)
Lakin (6-1; 3-1) at Lyons (0-7; 0-4)

District 8 – Phillipsburg (4-0) has clinched the District 8 championship having defeated both Hoisington (3-1) and Norton (3-1). Hoisington and Norton meet tonight with the winner claiming the district runner-up spot and the loser advancing as the third-place team. The fourth-place finisher depends on Friday’s action. Thomas More Prep will get the fourth playoff spot with a win over Ellsworth. Should the Monarchs lose to the Bearcats, a three-way tie would likely ensue with the team with the most district points margin claiming the final playoff spot.

Minneapolis (3-4; 1-3) at Phillipsburg (7-0; 4-0)
Norton (4-3; 3-1) at Hoisington (5-2; 3-1)
Thomas More Prep (2-5; 1-3) at Ellsworth (1-6; 0-4)


** Reminder that all teams in Class 1A automatically qualify for the playoff bracket.

Class 1A:

District 1 – Colgan is the district champion having posted wins over Yates Center and Pleasanton. Uniontown has lost to both Pleasanton and Yates Center and so the Eagles will go into the bracket as the fourth-place team from this district. The winner of Pleasanton and Yates Center qualifies as the district runner-up, while the loser is the third-place team.   

St. Mary’s Colgan (5-2; 2-0) at Uniontown (1-6; 0-2)
Pleasanton (6-1; 1-1) at Yates Center (2-5; 1-1)


District 2 – Olpe will travel to Hillsboro with the District 2 championship on the line.  The winner will be the District 2 champion with the loser taking the runner-up spot.  Likewise, Marion will travel to Bluestem with the winner joining the bracket as the third-place team from District 2 and the loser going as the fourth-place team.

Olpe (7-0; 2-0) at Hillsboro (6-1; 2-0)
Marion (1-6; 0-2) at Leon-Bluestem (1-6; 0-2)


District 3 – Jackson Heights can win the district title with a win over Lyndon. Meanwhile, a Lyndon victory over the Cobras coupled with a Troy loss to Jefferson Co. North would give the Tigers the district title. Troy can claim the district title by beating Jefferson Co. North and hoping for a Lyndon win over Jackson Heights. If that happens, Troy would need to finish with the most district margin points to claim the district title. Jefferson Co. North will be the fourth-place team unless the Chargers can beat Troy and Lyndon can beat Jackson Heights. If that occurs, JCN would be the third-place finisher.

Lyndon (3-4; 1-1) at Jackson Heights (6-1; 2-0)
Jefferson Co. North (2-5; 0-2) at Troy (4-3; 1-1)


District 4 – Centralia will host Valley Heights with the District 4 championship on the line.  The winner will be the District 4 champion with the loser taking the runner-up spot.  Likewise, Wabaunsee will travel to Northern Heights with the winner joining the bracket as the third-place team from District 4 and the loser going as the fourth-place team.

Valley Heights (5-2; 2-0) at Centralia (5-2; 2-0)
Wabaunsee (0-7; 0-2) at Northern Heights (2-5; 0-2)


District 5 – Smith Center will travel to Ell-Saline with the winner claiming the District 5 championship. The loser of Friday’s game will be slotted as the district runner-up.  Republic County will travel to Salina to take on Sacred Heart with the winner claiming third-place in District 5 and the loser advancing as the fourth-place team.

Smith Center (6-1; 2-0) at Ell-Saline (6-1; 2-0)
Republic County (0-7; 0-2) at Sacred Heart (2-5; 0-2)

District 6 – Plainville has already captured the District 6 title with wins over La Crosse and Ellis. The Cardinals will take on Oakley on Friday. The Plainsmen are already slotted as the fourth-place team out of District 6 after close losses to Ellis and La Crosse. Speaking of La Crosse and Ellis, the Leopards and Railroaders will meet for a second time this season with the winner claiming the district runner-up spot and the loser finishing in third-place. Ellis won the earlier meeting against La Cross, 44-34, back in Week 4.

Plainville (5-2; 2-0) at Oakley (3-4; 0-2)
La Crosse (3-4; 1-1) at Ellis (2-5; 1-1)


District 7 – Sedgwick will host Inman with the District 7championship on the line.  The winner will be the district champion with the loser taking the runner-up spot.  Likewise, Meade will travel to rival Sublette with the winner joining the bracket as the third-place team and the loser going as the fourth-place team.

Inman (5-2; 2-0) at Sedgwick (6-1; 2-0)
Meade (2-5; 0-2) at Sublette (0-7; 0-2)


District 8 – Elkhart has clinched championship in this three-team district. The Wildcats beat both Syracuse and Stanton County.  The Bulldogs and Trojans will meet on Friday in Syracuse with the winner advancing as the district runner-up and the loser as the third-place team.  

                Stanton County (2-4; 0-1) at Syracuse (3-3; 0-1)
                Elkhart (7-0; 2-0) - OPEN

Class 8-Man, Division I:

District 1 – Cedar Vale-Dexter, Central Burden, and Sedan have already clinched the top three playoffs spots from District 1, but the order is yet to be determined. Central Burden travels to Cedar Vale-Dexter tonight with important implications. Cedar Vale-Dexter is the district champion with a victory. For Central Burden to claim the district title, the Raiders have to win and hope Sedan loses to West Elk.  Similarly, a Sedan victory coupled with a Cedar Vale-Dexter loss means the Blue Devils are district champs. Meanwhile, Oswego will travel to Flinthills with the winner earning the final playoff spot. If Flinthills wins, the Mustangs would be the fourth-place team out of the district. If Oswego wins, their final place in the district standings would depend on the outcomes of the remainder of Friday’s games. Oswego could finish as high as third-place in the district should Central Burden and Sedan win on Friday night. That would result in Oswego being tied with Cedar Vale-Dexter at 3-2 and the Indians beat the Spartans last week. Incredibly, Cedar Vale-Dexter will win the district with a victory on Friday, but could get fourth place should they lose.

Central Burden (4-3; 3-1) at Cedar Vale-Dexter (5-2; 3-1)
Oswego (5-2; 2-2) at Flinthills (2-5; 1-3)
West Elk (1-6; 0-4) at Sedan (6-1; 3-1)

District 2 – South Central’s 4-0 district record has already secured the District 2 title for the T-Wolves. After that, four teams are tied with 2-2 district records and all vying for the final three playoff spots. Caldwell (2-2) visits Medicine Lodge (2-2) with the winner claiming one of the remaining playoff spots. Udall (2-2) will be a heavy favorite at winless Oxford and can claim a playoff spot with a win. Argonia-Attica (2-2) has the biggest challenge with a trip to South Central. All the other 2-2 teams have one loss to South Central on their resume. Argonia-Attica holds the head-to-head tie-breaker over Medicine Lodge. Meanwhile, Caldwell holds the tie-breaker over A&A, Udall over Caldwell and A&A, and Medicine Lodge over Udall. Bottom line, each of Friday’s district games are critical in the potential tie-breaker scenarios.

Argonia-Attica (5-2; 2-2) at South Central (6-1; 4-0)
Caldwell (5-2; 2-2) at Medicine Lodge (4-3; 2-2)
Oxford (0-7; 0-4) at Udall (5-2; 2-2)

District 3 – Madison has clinched as the district championship as its four district wins can only be matched by Burlingame, but the Bulldogs defeated the Bearcats, 26-24 last week. Burlingame, Lebo, and Maranatha Academy have clinched the three other playoffs spots, but the order of finish is still up in the air. Burlingame has a key road game at Lebo this week. If the Bearcats win, they are the district runners-up. Lebo can claim the district runner-up position by beating Burlingame by at least 20 points. The Wolves are also the runners-up if they can just beat Burlingame and get help in the form of a Valley Falls win over Maranatha. Maranatha will finish third with a victory and a Burlingame win over Lebo. If Lebo and Maranatha win, a three-way tie with Burlingame will come down to district margin points.

Chase County (1-6; 1-3) at Madison (7-0; 4-0)
Burlingame (6-1; 3-1) at Lebo (4-3; 2-2)
Maranatha Academy (5-2; 2-2) at Valley Falls (1-6; 0-4)

District 4 – Canton-Galva has clinched as the district championship as its four district wins can only be matched by Solomon, but the Eagles defeated the Gorillas, 38-20 last week. Solomon clinches the runner-up spot with a win over Peabody-Burns. Likewise, Bennington can claim a playoff spot with a win at Goessel. Peabody-Burns can finish as the district runner-up with a win over Solomon coupled with a Bennington loss to Goessel. Goessel can sneak into the playoffs by beating Bennington along with a Peabody-Burns victory over Solomon.

Canton-Galva (6-1; 4-0) at Herington (2-5; 0-4)
Peabody-Burns (3-4; 2-2) at Solomon (6-1; 3-1)
Bennington (4-3; 2-2) at Goessel (3-4; 1-3)

District 5 – The four qualifying playoff teams out of District 5 have already been determined, but their order of finish has not. Central Plains, Little River, and Macksville are all 3-1 entering Friday’s action, while Moundridge is 2-2. Central Plains is the district champion with a win over Macksville, while the Mustangs can claim the title with a win and a Little River loss to Moundridge. Little River can clinch the runner-up spot with a win at Moundridge. Moundridge can finish as high as third place with a victory and a Macksville upset of Central Plains.

Central Plains (7-0; 4-0) at Macksville (4-3; 3-1)
Little River (6-1; 3-1) at Moundridge (3-4; 2-2)
Pratt-Skyline (1-6; 0-4) at St. John (0-7; 0-4)

District 6 – Similar to District 5, the four qualifying playoff teams out of District 6 have been determined, but their order of finish has not. Hodgeman County (4-0) can claim the title with a win over Ness City (3-1). Ness City would be the district champion by beating Hodgeman County coupled with a Spearville loss to South Gray. Spearville can finish as the runner-up with a win and a Hodgeman County win over Ness City.

Hodgeman County (7-0; 4-0) at Ness City (5-2; 3-1)
South Gray (3-4; 2-2) at Spearville (5-2; 3-1)
Kiowa County (3-4; 0-4) at Kinsley (1-6; 0-4)

District 7 – Clifton-Clyde has clinched as the district championship as its four district wins can only be matched by Victoria, but the Eagles defeated the Knights 54-30 in Week 5. Victoria (3-1) has already clinched a playoff spot and will be the runner-up with a win over Stockton (2-2).  Hill City (2-2) clinches a playoff spot with a win over Washington County (1-3). Washington County needs to beat the Ringnecks and hope for a Stockton win over Victoria to reach the playoff bracket. Stockton is in with a win, or the Tigers need Hill City to beat Washington County to back in.

Clifton-Clyde (7-0; 4-0) at Lincoln (2-5; 0-4)
Hill City (4-3; 2-2) at Washington County (3-4; 1-3)
Stockton (3-4; 2-2) at Victoria (5-2; 3-1)

District 8 – St. Francis (4-0) has clinched the District 8 championship having a head-to-head win over Hoxie (3-1). Meanwhile, the defending-champion Hoxie Indians have clinched a playoff spot regardless of their outcome with WaKeeney-Trego.  The Indians are district runner-up should they win. Leoti-Wichita County can clinch a playoff spot for the first time since 2002 with a win over Oberlin. Should Oberlin win, the Red Devils can still get in as long as WaKeeney-Trego beats Hoxie.

Atwood-Rawlins Co. (1-6; 0-4) at St. Francis (7-0; 4-0)
WaKeeney-Trego (4-3; 2-2) at Hoxie (6-1; 3-1)
Oberlin-Decatur Co. (3-4; 1-3) at Leoti-Wichita Co. (5-2; 2-2)


Class 8-Man, Division II:

District 1 – Southern Coffey County travels to St. Paul to decide the district championship. The winner is the District 1 champion, while the loser qualifies as the district runner-up.  Marmaton Valley can claim third place with a win against Chetopa, while Altoona-Midway can get its first playoff berth since 1992 by winning at Crest. A Chetopa upset of Marmaton Valley coupled with an Altoona-Midway win would put the three schools in a three-way tie with district margin points deciding the two remaining playoff spots. Even if Crest beats Altoona and ties the Jets and Chetopa for the final playoff spot, the Lancers cannot attain the best district points margin of the three and thus have been eliminated.  

Southern Coffey Co. (5-2; 4-0) at St. Paul (6-1; 4-0)
Chetopa (1-5; 1-3) at Marmaton Valley (2-5; 2-2)
Altoona-Midway (1-6; 1-3) at Colony-Crest (0-7; 0-4)

District 2 – Waverly, Centre-Lost Springs, and Wakefield are the top three teams in District 2; however, their order of finish is still to be determined. Waverly hosts Wakefield and would clinch the title with a victory. A Wakefield win could mean a district championship for the Bombers if Centre is upset by Marais des Cygnes Valley. A Centre victory along with a Waverly win, makes the Cougars the district runners-up. The final playoff spot, fourth place in the district, will be awarded to the winner of Hartford at Rural Vista.

Wakefield (3-4; 3-1) at Waverly (6-1; 4-0)
Centre-Lost Springs (5-2; 3-1) at Marais des Cygnes Valley (0-7; 0-4)
Hartford (2-5; 1-3) at Rural Vista (1-6; 1-3)

District 3 – The four playoff qualifiers have been determined, but the top three spots in the district are yet to be decided. Hanover can clinch the district championship with a win over Frankfort. If Frankfort wins, a three-way tie (with Axtell) would likely result at the top of the standings. If that takes place, the district points margin would be used to decide the top three spots. Doniphan West is ensured fourth-place from this district despite the Mustangs’ loss to Blue Valley Randolph. That’s because Blue Valley Randolph voluntarily forfeited their district game against Hanover which, by rule, eliminates them from playoff consideration. Blue Valley Randolph defeated Doniphan West 36-12 last week.

Frankfort (6-1; 4-1) at Hanover (7-0; 5-0)
Axtell (6-1; 4-1) at Doniphan West (3-4; 2-3)
Wetmore (1-6; 0-5) at Onaga (1-6; 0-5)
Lakeside-Downs (2-5; 2-4) at Blue Valley Randolph (3-4; 3-3) (*ND)

District 4 – Another district where the four playoff teams have already been decided. Beloit St. John’s-Tipton will travel to Rock Hills to decide the district title. The winner will be crowned the District 4 champion, while the loser will be the runner-up. Pike Valley’s three district wins have the Panthers back in the playoffs as the third-place team out of District 4. Even if Pike Valley loses to Linn, the Panthers will finish in third place based on their head-to-head win over Southern Cloud. Southern Cloud is also in the playoffs for the first time since 2013. The Warriors play winless Tescott on Friday. Even with a loss, Southern Cloud would hold the tie-breaker over Lakeside-Downs by virtue of a 54-30 win over the Knights back in Week 5. Southern Cloud also holds the head-to-head advantage over Linn should the Bulldogs upset Pike Valley.

Beloit St. John’s-Tipton (5-2; 5-0) at Mankato-Rock Hills (6-1; 5-0)
Pike Valley (3-4; 3-2) at Linn (1-6; 1-4)
Southern Cloud (2-5; 2-3) at Tescott (0-7; 0-5)
Lakeside-Downs (2-5) at Blue Valley Randolph (3-4) (*Non-District)

District 5 – Osborne and Thunder Ridge have both clinched playoff spots. Osborne can finish no worse than the district runner-up, but will be the champion with a win over Thunder Ridge tonight. Thunder Ridge is the district champion with a win at Osborne. If Thunder Ridge loss coupled with wins by Northern Valley and Sylvan-Lucas would result in a three-way tie for the remaining three district playoff spots and come down to district margin points. Sylvan-Lucas can finish as the district runner-up with a victory over Wilson and losses by both Thunder Ridge and Northern Valley. Even Logan-Palco can still reach the bracket with a win over Northern Valley, as long as Sylvan-Lucas also beats Wilson.

Thunder Ridge (5-2; 3-1) at Osborne (6-1; 4-0)
Northern Valley (5-2; 2-2) at Logan-Palco (2-5; 1-3)
Sylvan-Lucas Unified (4-3; 2-2) at Wilson (1-6; 0-4)

District 6 – Dighton has clinched the District 6 championship with a 4-0 start that includes a win over Triplains-Brewster – the only team that could pull even with the Hornets in the standings. Triplains is the district runner-up with a win over Wallace County. A loss by Triplains could throw the Titans into a three-way tie with Wallace County and Tribune. That three-way tie would be separated by district margin points. Tribune would claim the third-place spot in the district with a win over Quinter along with a Triplains win. The Jackrabbits hold the head-to-head tie-breaker with Wallace County thanks to a 30-28, overtime win over the Wildcats last week. Quinter’s path to the playoffs includes a win over Tribune and a Wallace County victory over Triplains.

Wheatland-Grinnell (1-6; 0-4) at Dighton (5-2; 4-0)
Quinter (1-6; 1-3) at Tribune-Greeley Co. (3-4; 2-2)
Sharon Springs-Wallace Co. (2-5; 2-2) at Triplains-Brewster (4-3; 3-1)

District 7 – South Barber has clinched as the district championship as the Chieftains hold the head-to-head tie-breakers over both Hutchinson Central Christian and South Haven. The winner of tonight’s game between South Haven and Central Christian will be the district runner-up, while the loser will claim third-place. Pretty Prairie is the fourth-place team out of the district thanks to wins over Burrton, Norwich, and Fairfield. Burrton has a non-district game at Chase this week, and the two should meet again next week in the non-bracket Week 9 game.

South Barber (6-0-1; 5-0) at Pretty Prairie (3-4; 3-2)
South Haven (4-3; 4-1) at Hutchinson Central Christian (5-2; 4-1)
Norwich (1-6; 1-4) at Fairfield (1-6; 1-4)
Burrton (0-7; 0-6) at Chase (0-7; 0-6) (*Non-District)

District 8 – Otis-Bison (5-0) has clinched the District 8 championship having the head-to-head win over Stafford (4-1). Stafford can clinch the district runner-up spot with a win over Satanta. A Stafford loss to Satanta coupled with an Ingalls win at Otis-Bison would create a three-way tie for second place at 4-2 and require district margin points to determine the playoff qualifiers. If the favorites win tonight - Otis-Bison beats Ingalls, Stafford beats Satanta, and Minneola beats Bucklin – it would be Ingalls and Satanta getting the playoff spots based on margin points. Minneola can still get in, but the Wildcats need to beat Bucklin, have Ingalls lose to Otis-Bison, and have Satanta beat Stafford. Satanta has clinched a playoff spot with its win over Minneola.

Otis-Bison (5-1-1; 5-0) at Ingalls (3-4; 3-2)
Satanta (4-3; 3-2) at Stafford (5-2; 4-1)
Minneola (3-4; 2-3) at Bucklin (2-5; 1-4)
Burrton (0-7; 0-6) at Chase (0-7; 0-6) (*Non-District)

Central Kansas teams enjoying successful seasons

Canton-Galva’s win over Solomon gives Eagles district title

Canton-Galva’s Shelby Hoppes had served as a varsity football assistant and the junior high head coach for the last two seasons at his alma mater. Hoppes had always wanted a chance to become a varsity head football coach.

A week before the 2017 season started, Hoppes earned his chance when Dustin Patee left the Canton-Galva program and is currently the Lincoln head coach. Hoppes, a ’03 Canton-Galva graduate, took over and helped the Eagles to a two-win improvement and 4-5 record.

Hoppes, though, quickly noticed Canton-Galva was behind many opponents in strength and conditioning. He wanted the Eagles to get a “jumpstart” and gained permission from the school’s baseball coach to start early morning weight sessions in the spring.

The team had great attendance for 6 a.m. spring weights, and then had 90 percent attendance in the summer program.

“We built some athletes out of them,” Hoppes said. “And that’s where it all began, and they’ve just taken it and ran since.”

This fall, Canton-Galva, with no seniors, has become one of the state’s biggest surprises at 6-1, 4-0 in district play.

The Eagles have already won District 4 after a big 38-20 win versus previously undefeated Solomon last Friday. The victory makes Canton-Galva a strong contender in the wide-open eastern side of Eight-Man, Division I. This week, Canton-Galva is at Herington (2-5).

The Eagles have their most wins since a 7-4 season in 2006 under former coach Zac Hoppes, Shelby’s brother. Zac Hoppes currently lives in McPherson and is the father of standout McPherson quarterback Kyler Hoppes.

Shelby talks often with his brother and highly successful McPherson coach Jace Pavlovich, a Canton-Galva graduate.

“We knew that we were bringing back a bunch of kids that had worked hard and a lot of kids that even though nobody outside of the program had seen us, we had seen these kids in action and seen what they were capable of,” Hoppes said. “And we knew that we were going to be a pretty good football team.”

Pavlovich has led McPherson, ranked second in Class 4A, to a 7-0 mark, its best start since 1927. The Central Kansas success has also yielded big turnarounds from 1A’s Hillsboro (6-1) and Inman (5-2). Smoky Valley is 7-0 and among the top 3A squads.

“We’ve got a lot of good football being played here in Central Kansas,” Inman coach Lance Sawyer.

After a season-opening 52-20 defeat at one-loss Little River to open the year, Canton-Galva has won every game by at least 18 points.

“Ever since then, our physicality has risen, our execution level has risen, and that’s all because they went out and they played against a good team,” Hoppes said.

That includes a 66-28 road win in Week 3 at Centre-Lost Springs, currently a 5-2 squad. Solomon has averaged 52 points a contest, Centre 47.

Canton-Galva has averaged 47.7 points a contest behind the no-huddle spread offense paced by junior quarterback Landon Everett, one of eight-man’s top dual threat quarterbacks.

Everett, who gained 15 pounds of body mass from last year, has rushed 119 times for 1,043 yards in his second season as the starter. Last fall, Canton-Galva had a senior who could have started at quarterback. However, Hoppes, thinking of the future, put Everett under center.

“You can tell now that it has paid off big time for us,” Hoppes said. “He took his bumps and bruises last year and made mistakes, but he has learned from all those and spent a lot of time watching film. … What he does so well is he has a real short memory.”

“Any mistake that happens, he is real quick to forget about it and move on,” Hoppes said. “He is finally starting to play with some confidence and make plays for us all over the field – not just offensively.”

Hoppes, who coordinates the offense, learned the principles from Pavlovich. Hoppes said the Eagles’ no-huddle look has “caught a lot of teams off guard,” especially those who have many players start both ways.

Last year, Hoppes installed the offensive terminology as the Eagles had a big increase from 19.3 points per game in ’16 to 35.6, the third-biggest eight-man offensive improvement from ’16 to ‘17. This fall, Canton-Galva has added the no-huddle.

“We have really been able to wear out of a lot of kids, and a lot of defenses doing it that way,” Hoppes said.

Tyler O’Connor coordinates the defense. O’Connor was a former multi-year all-state player for Sharon Springs-Wallace County coach Kevin Ayers. He started on the 2007 state title team.

Hoppes has appreciated the “winning tradition and winning mentality” O’Connor learned from Ayers. O’Connor’s father, Larry, is the highly successful boys’ basketball coach at Wallace County and has two state titles in the last five years.

“From what I understand, coach Ayers, everything I have ever heard about him is that when it comes to eight-man football, he’s, if not the best, he’s one of the best,” Hoppes said.

Solomon entered last Friday second in Division I in scoring offense. O’Connor watched film on Solomon for three weeks. The detailed game plan required more time, and Canton-Galva met on Saturday and Sunday for a film session. By last Monday, Canton-Galva had everything in place.

“The game plan that he came up with was spectacular,” Hoppes said.

Canton-Galva looked to give Solomon multiple looks and had two or three defensive calls for every Gorilla formation. Solomon runs a lot of read option and finished with just 3.4 yards a carry for 133 rushing yards.

Everett and freshman free safety Tyson Struber each picked off a pass, and sophomore linebacker Brandon Huff paced with 12.5 tackles, 1.5 for loss. Overall, Struber has five interceptions, Everett four, and sophomore Conner Koehn leads with 5.5 sacks.

Junior Kinser Colgin also starts at wide receiver, while sophomore Brayden Collins has stepped up with back-to-back 100-yard rushing efforts.

Sophomore tight end Brandon Huff, sophomore right guard Keaton Littrell, junior center Jay Nightingale, and junior left guard Nick Pearson form the offensive line. Nightingale, the team’s biggest player at 5-foot-9, 235 pounds, was out until Week 4 but has returned. Junior Mason Reedy has done well clogging holes at nose guard.

“They pulled a lot when they shouldn’t have, and they gave a lot when they should have pulled,” Hoppes said of Solomon. “And it was all due to just the looks that we were giving them and changing it up on them.”

Hillsboro, Inman with big turnaround seasons

Hillsboro and Inman, located just 40 minutes apart, have multiple similarities. First, Sawyer coached Hillsboro and then returned to take over Inman, his alma mater, three years ago. Second, the teams combined for a 1-17 record last year, including 0-9 by Inman.

This fall, both teams have had their leading rusher - Hillsboro’s Jorge Hanschu and Inman’s Matt Ramey - return after the player missed all of last season because of injury. Each has a standout senior lineman with Hillsboro’s Wes Shaw and Inman’s Wyatt Meier.

As well, the squads have taken advantage of scheduling changes in the new 1A format and faced teams they haven’t played in many years, or ever. Each team had a key Week 1 contest that has served a turning point. The differences have led to a five-win turnaround for each squad.

“It’s pretty neat to see some of these schools that have suffered through and these towns that have suffered through some down years really have big years this year,” Hillsboro coach Devin Metzinger said.

Hillsboro has won six straight after it had a combined six wins in the last four seasons. The Trojans have its best year since a 10-1 mark under Sawyer in 2012.

Inman, with just five victories in the previous four years, has its first winning season since a 6-3 mark in 2013. Additionally, both teams will play for a district title against a marquee opponent this week.

Hillsboro plays host to No. 2 Olpe (7-0) for the District 2 title. It marks the first time the teams have ever played each other. Inman travels to 6-1 Sedgwick for the District 7 crown. Inman has lost 10 straight to the Cardinals since ’04.

For Hillsboro, Hanschu, a running back as a sophomore, missed last year because of a knee injury. He has completed 79 of 142 passes for 1,309 yards with a 15/7 TD/INT ratio. He has led with 120 carries for 624 yards and nine scores. Hanschu shone in a 42-36 season-opening loss to Hesston, a game that gave Metzinger confidence.

Senior Brooks Gardner has delivered an exceptional year with 85 carries for 570 yards and 10 scores and paced the defense with 73 tackles, four sacks and a pair of forced fumbles. A physical north/south runner, Gardner was among players hurt in 2017.

“Gardner has been in the last four weeks, five weeks, has ran like he has never run before,” Metzinger said. “I think it’s been one of the things that has really put us over the edge in the last few games. It’s really made us explosive, and it takes us to another dynamic having him run.”

Shaw, a three-year starter and state shot put champion, is 6-foot-2, and 260 pounds. He has 42 tackles and delivered one of 2018’s signature moments with an 83-yard interception return for the eventual game-winning score against rival Marion in Week 6.

Hanschu, Gardner and Shaw are part of an experienced senior class. Five of the seniors are returning starters, among them wide receiver Darian Ratzlaff.

He had to play quarterback and running back last year but has settled in at wide receiver with 33 catches for 542 yards and five scores. Among the underclassmen, sophomore Austin Rempel moved to the line in the summer and has started at center and nose guard.

Junior Caleb Potucek has produced 412 receiving yards and 55 tackles, both second-most. His brother, freshman Matt, has started at three positions. Metzinger has been impressed with his ability to run up and catch short punts to improve field position.

“They have had to battle through a lot of stuff in their four years from seasons like last year and injuries for some of them, so they are pretty battle-tested through the last few years and now everything is kind of falling in place for them,” Metzinger said. “They are able to have some success.”

In previous seasons, Hillsboro, then a small 3A, had struggled against the strong Central Kansas League. This year, the Trojans have played just three league games versus Hesston and against struggling Lyons (42-0) and Haven (32-24).

The Trojans have wins against Sacred Heart, Wabaunsee and Leon-Bluestem. Hillsboro has not played Sacred Heart since ’09 and has never faced Wabaunsee or Bluestem. The Trojans have played the easiest strength of schedule in the 31-team 1A, according to Prep Power Index.

“We struggled at times being in the old 3A numbers-wise,” Metzinger said. “… You are going to new places. You are playing on new fields. You are playing completely new programs, so it makes fun, while also being a little bit of a challenge at times.”

Ramey, O-line keying Inman success

Last fall, Ramey suffered a year-ending injury in the team’s fall preseason scrimmage. Senior Jaxon Eddy also had injury. The duo immediately started in the weight room after the season ended. Ramey has added 100-plus pounds to his bench and squat.

“Those guys got huge,” Sawyer said. “And then everybody saw those two guys get huge, and everybody started following. So, we have dedicated ourselves to the weight room, and I think it’s paid off tremendously.”

The 5-foot-11 Meier has helped Ramey rush for 1,096 yards and 12 scores, including 352 in a 62-34 home win in Week 4 versus Marion. Ramey has tallied a team-high 65 tackles, two sacks and two forced fumbles.

Six-foot-7 Senior Mason Thiessen has blocked strong, too. Both read the defenses effectively. Meier is known for his pulling, while Thiessen gets to the second level extremely well. In Sawyer’s eyes, it’s allowed the lineman to reach linebackers much better than in the past.

“Wyatt Meier, he has been amazing,” Sawyer said. “He’s one that also dedicated himself to the weight room following last year. He has thinned down a little bit. He has gotten so much stronger. But he’s just a force up there. Him and Mason Thiessen are the leaders of our offensive line. We follow those guys on the majority of our plays. They’ve really led the turnaround of his program.”

Inman ended a 10-game losing streak when it opened the year with a 37-36 comeback overtime win versus Belle Plaine. The Teutons trailed, 30-10.

Last week, Inman captured its second one-point win with a 28-27 victory against Meade after it beat Sublette, 56-6, in the district opener. It marked the first meetings versus Belle Plaine, Meade and Sublette in at least 14 years.

“For those kids to win that game, to sprint off that field, everybody giving high-fives, it was a fantastic part of the season,” Sawyer said of the season opener. “And it really led us to having such a good season right now. Those guys started to believe that they are getting better, and it seems like every game we have gotten better and better.”

Hutchinson Central Christian again with big numbers

The last two falls, Hutchinson Central Christian has produced 9-2 and 10-1 seasons with incredible offenses. In ’16, Central Christian led eight-man football with 62.2 points a contest. Last year, the Cougars delivered 64 points a game, nearly nine points a contest better than any other eight-man team.

The Cougars graduated two first team all-state players in quarterback Nate Heneha and lineman JT Duree. But Central Christian has not slowed down.

The Cougars (5-2) again pace all of eight-man with 428 points, 18 ahead of Osborne. This week, Central Christian plays host to South Haven (4-3). Both teams are 4-1. The winner will gain the runner-up spot out of Eight-Man, Division II, District 7 behind South Barber.

Junior Caleb Lambert has completed 78 for 121 passes for 1,272 yards with a 23/5 TD/INT ratio. He has 45 carries for a team-high 427 yards and 10 scores.

Junior Garrett Burns has 61 carries for 372 yards and eight scores. Junior Adam Hall, senior Marshall Walton, Burns and sophomore Dawson Urwiller have between 166 and 394 receiving yards. Urwiller and Burns each lead with 65 tackles apiece.

Senior Bailey Nachtigal has anchored the line at guard. Freshman David Weis and sophomore Eli Pisano have split time at center. Three other players – sophomore Cory Embers, freshman Carson Hamby, and Weis – have split time at guard. Senior wingback Richie Oswalt missed four games with injury but has returned.


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