Kpreps Friday First Look - Week 7

Cheylin's Colton McCarty (5) & Natoma's Nicholas Racette get tangled up on Friday. (Everett Royer)
By: Matt Gilmore, Conor Nicholl & Alex Hammeke for
Oct 19, 2019

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Kpreps Friday First Look provides our initial reaction to some of the most notable games and performances in the state from Week 7:


Class 6A

Lawrence sends a message, downs Olathe North

Third-ranked Lawrence passed another big test and remained unbeaten with a 35-10 victory over No. 2 Olathe North.

Olathe North scored the game’s first 10 points on an Arland Bruce, IV touchdown run as the Eagles capitalized on short fields.

It wasn’t long that Devin Neal and the Chesty Lions took over.

Neal caught a touchdown pass from Jackson Dooley, then Dooley hit Chris McGee for another score to put Lawrence up 14-10 at halftime.

Neal would score three more times in the second half on a pair of touchdown runs and another scoring catch from Dooley.

Neal finished with more than 150 yards rushing and 65 receiving yards. McGee caught nine passes for 165 yards from Dooley.

Bruce rushed for 137 yards on the night to lead Olathe North.

The victory allows Lawrence to keep pace with Derby and Dodge City as the only unbeaten teams on the west side of Class 6A. Olathe North falls into a four-way tie in the 6A East standings for the No. 2 seed.


Topeka High shuts out Emporia

Last season, Topeka High needed a game-winning 39-yard field goal from Gregorio Leonardo to top Emporia, 27-26, on the final play.

On Friday, the Trojans scored a pair of first-quarter touchdowns and used a strong defensive effort to shut out the Spartans, 27-0.

Da’Vonshai Harden and Janus Gilbert rushed for scores in the first quarter and Harden later hit Quentin Weathers on a touchdown pass as Topeka pulled away.

Ky Thomas rushed for more than 200 yards on the night to lead the Topeka High offense.


Dodge City retains the Hatchet, takes down Garden City in weather-delayed game

The scene five minutes before kickoff is may be best described as the wild west; consisting of relentless straight-line winds, dust blowing, and dark ominous clouds in the distance. A nearby thunderstorm delayed the kickoff until 8:30.

When the teams came out for the opening kick, the relentless straight-line winds were still there. Most of the offensive production was on the ground for Garden, who fumbled the ball at their own 20 on their first offensive drive. Dodge was stonewalled on that drive, but converted that turnover into a field goal. The score would remain 3-0 for the remainder of the half. Garden City would get as close as the Dodge City nine-yard line before the second-quarter clock expired. The Buffaloes would call on freshman quarterback Caleb Wiese after second-string signal caller Zane Burns went out with an injury.

Heavy rains appeared in the third quarter, which led to a Dodge City fumble. With 2:07 in the third quarter, Dodge City had a backwards pass that was bobbled and then recovered by Garden City. The Buffaloes would score off a 1-yard run from Joshua Janas early in the fourth quarter for a 7-3 lead.

On the ensuing kickoff return, Matt Freiss would take the return 53 yards, and Dodge would score a 29-yard touchdown pass from Beau Foster to Alden Knedler. A rushing touchdown from Friess the play before was wiped off the board because of a Red Demon penalty.

“After that play got wiped back, we knew this is our game. We were gonna get this. We didn’t doubt it one second.” Knedler said of the play before his touchdown.

Garden City would punt on their ensuing drive, and the Red Demons would strike again as Foster connected with DeJon Delgado on a 68-yard touchdown pass to push the score to the final margin of 17-7.

“It feels amazing. Every time you win a Hatchet. You gotta just thank God because it’s an amazing feeling. There’s no other (feeling) like that.” Beau Foster said on the Red Demons’ second-straight win in the series.

Garden City had one final shot to close the gap, but a pass fell incomplete on fourth-and-goal from the 12-yard line.

Garden City produced more yardage than Dodge City, 263-117. The Buffalo defense pushed Dodge City back for minus 14 yards rushing, however Dodge City had 131 passing yards to Garden City’s 15.

“It was strange because our biggest plays were into the wind.” Dodge City Head Coach Dave Foster commented, noting the two touchdown passes from Beau to Knedler and Delgado.

Dodge City stays unbeaten at 7-0 on the season, and will take on Liberal in the regular-season finale. A Red Demon win will secure the outright the WAC title. Garden City falls to 2-5 and will take on Great Bend next week.

If the playoff picture does not change next week, Dodge and Garden would meet each other in the Week 9 game, with that contest to be held at Dodge City.


Class 5A

Aquinas runs past Bishop Miege, 45-32

This one played out very similar to last season. Bishop Miege jumped out to a two-score lead before St. Thomas Aquinas slowly, methodically wore them down and claimed a 45-32 victory.

The two teams entered the game ranked No. 1 in their respective classifications – Aquinas No. 1 in Class 5A, while Miege No. 1 in Class 4A.

It was the host Stags that jumped out to an early 13-0 lead on a Brison Cobbins touchdown run and a Tim Dorsey touchdown pass to Daniel Jackson following an interception by the Miege defense.

But Aquinas would answer with 21 consecutive points in the form of a Blake Anderson touchdown pass to Finn Barnett, and a pair of Tank Young touchdown runs to lead 21-13.

Cobbins scored again to pull the Stags within 21-20, but Aquinas would connect on a 25-yard field goal before halftime for a 24-20 lead.

Young added another touchdown run late in the third quarter for a 31-20 lead, then Anderson hit Isaiah Gavin on a touchdown strike for a 38-20 lead.

Miege responded immediately as Daniel Jackson took a short pass and raced 75 yards down the sideline to cut the margin to 38-26.

Each team would score once more as Anderson threw his third touchdown pass of the night – this one to Tommy Carroll. Miege’s Tim Dorsey would answer with a late touchdown to Jackson.

Tank Young had a huge night in rushing 52 times for 303 yards and three touchdowns. Anderson passed for 129 yards and three scores of his own.

For Miege, Dorsey passed for 210 yards with three touchdowns to Daniel Jackson – who caught five for 125 yards. Cobbins led the ground game with 123 yards and two scores.


Maize South stays perfect

Maize South remained perfect at 7-0 and followed its usual script of a close, low-scoring game. The Mavericks won 7-0 against Goddard with a first half touchdown from Justice Morris.

The Mavericks have back-to-back shutouts and have four victories by eight points or fewer.

Goddard multi-year starting quarterback Kyler Semrad announced this week on Twitter that he is out for the year with a knee injury.

Maize South has scored 14 points or fewer in three victories.


Mill Valley edges Blue Valley, 24-20

Mill Valley scored 24 consecutive points on Friday in rallying past Blue Valley, 24-20.

The Jaguars trailed the Tigers 13-0 in the second quarter before getting on the board with a Chris Tennant field goal and a touchdown pass from Cooper Marsh to Ty Reishus.

Blue Valley led 13-10 at halftime before Marsh tossed touchdown passes to Jacob Hartman and Zach Mills to give the Jaguars a 24-13 lead. Chase Jans would later add a touchdown for the Tigers to pull within the final margin.

Marsh passed for 200 yards and three scores, while Quin Wittenauer led Mill Valley with more than 150 yards rushing, while Marsh added 136 more yards on the ground.


Washington blasts Schlagle on Thursday night

KC Washington won the Kansas City-Atchison League outright with a 42-6 victory over KC Schlagle on Thursday night.

The Wildcats rushed for 366 yards in the victory led by Thomas Anderson’s 110 yards and three scores on the ground.

Cory Macon added 75 yards and two touchdowns, while James Black added 85 more rush yards. Macon also passed for more than 100 yards in the game.

Washington improved to 5-2 with the win and remains in the mix for a top 3 seed on the east side of Class 5A.

Class 4A

Buhler, Winfield both fall out of running for top two seed

On Thursday night, Hays High scored two touchdowns in the second half to win at Buhler. 17-7.

Holding on to a slim 10-7 lead, Hays’ Tucker Veach picked off a Buhler pass and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown to push the margin to two scores in the fourth quarter.

Meanwhile, on Friday night, Winfield suffered only their second loss of the season in a 14-13 defeat to Wellington.

Zane Cornejo’s long touchdown run in the fourth quarter provided the Crusaders with the winning points, but Wellington had to survive a late turnover and hold the Vikings on downs.

Both Wellington and Buhler are 5-2 and now vying for the No. 3 and No. 4 seed on the west side of Class 4A, while Andover Central sits alone on the 2-line after their 31-13 win over rival Andover.


Class 3A

No. 2, No. 3, and No. 4 all go down in Class 3A

It was a wild night in Class 3A as three ranked teams went down.

Second-ranked Marysville shut down by Holton

Holton rebounded from last week’s loss to Sabetha by handling No. 2 Marysville, 30-8.

The Wildcats’ Konnor Tannahill rushed for 130 yards and three scores in the game – including a short touchdown run on the final play of the first half that gave Holton a 14-0 lead.

Holton then blocked a Marysville punt out of the end zone in the third quarter for a safety and a 16-0 advantage.

The Wildcats immediately took the ensuing free kick and cashed it into points on a Taygen Fletcher touchdown run before Tannahill added another score later in the game.

Holton (5-2) kept pace in the ultra-competitive District 4 with the win. The Wildcats are tied with Marysville and Wamego atop the standings. Holton can clinch the district title with a win at home against Wamego next week.

Wamego slows down No. 4 Sabetha

Speaking of the Red Raiders, Wamego scored 28 consecutive points in beating defending-champion Sabetha, 28-15.

After the fourth-ranked Blue Jays scored first, Wamego rode the legs of quarterback Brad Sackrider who scored the first of his two rushing touchdowns to tie the game. Wamego led 14-7 at halftime after a Taybor Vetter scoring run.

Sackrider and Isaiah Childs each scored in the fourth quarter as Wamego pulled away.

Sackrider rushed for 195 yards and those two scores as the Sabetha defense keyed in on Childs.

Sabetha now must defeat Royal Valley next week to qualify for the playoffs.

Class 3A, District 3 also had some excitement

The upsets didn’t just take place in District 4, Perry-Lecompton edged No. 3 Topeka Hayden 21-20 in overtime on Friday night.

The Kaws led 7-0 until the fourth quarter when Hayden scored on a TL Thompson touchdown run, but a missed extra point left Perry-Lecompton with a 7-6 lead.

The Kaws would answer despite losing quarterback William Welch to injury. Thad Metcalfe moved from running back to behind center and tossed a touchdown pass to James Roush to push the lead to 14-6.

Hayden answer late and tie the game as quarterback Johnny Holloway hit Trey Pivarnik on a touchdown pass then Will DeVader on the two-point conversion to tie the game and force overtime.

In overtime, Metcalf put the Kaws up with a touchdown pass to Hunter Hess.

Hayden’s possession also resulted in a touchdown from Jack Konrade, but the wildcats elected to go for the winning two-point conversion. The Kaws tackled Thompson short and celebrated the upset win.

Perry-Lecompton is now in great shape to claim the district title with only a road game at Bishop Ward remaining. The Cyclones have lost 54 consecutive games.

Hayden will have to try and bounce back against Wellsville, who has also been eliminated from playoff contention.

Wellsville pushes Jeff West before falling

Jefferson West scored two touchdowns in the final 15 minutes of game time to overcome Wellsville, 29-23.

For much of the night, it looked like Wellsville might join the 3A upset party as the Eagles led the Tigers 23-14 in the third quarter behind three Anthony Signs touchdown runs.

But Jeff West closed to within 23-21 late in the third quarter, then took the lead early in the fourth to clinch a playoff spot and keep its district title hopes alive.

Wellsville is eliminated with the loss. Signs was a bright spot for the Eagles in rushing for 168 yards and three scores against a Tiger defense that had surrendered only 16 total points all season.

Wellsville will close out the regular season at Topeka Hayden, while Jeff West will host Santa Fe Trail.


Colby claims wild double-overtime victory over Scott City

In District 8, Colby delivered a 28-20 double overtime victory against Scott City.

On fourth-and-goal, the Colby defense stuffed Scott City quarterback Parker Gooden at the 1-yard line to secure the win.

WATCH – Colby defense stuffing Scott City at the 1-yard line in OT (courtesy Jackson Schneider)

The Eagles had lost to the Beavers last year in a game that decided the top-two district spots. Colby ended a 15-game losing streak versus Scott City and defeated the Beavers for the first time since 1999.

The game was tied at 14 entering overtime. Colby led 7-6 at halftime.

Colby (4-0) has already clinched the district title by virtue of their 21-14 win over Concordia back in Week 5. Concordia stands at 3-1, and Scott City and Beloit are both 2-2. Colby will travel to rival Goodland next week.  The Eagles have four one-score victories this season.


Hugoton handles Larned to force three-way tie atop District 7

District 7 has not received the attention of District 8 or District 4, but also has little separation at the top.

Hugoton, Larned, and Holcomb are all 3-1 in district. Larned, a winless team last year, is 4-3 overall. Holcomb is also 4-3.

Hugoton opened 0-3 with close losses to Scott City, Colby, and Ulysses. The Eagles defeated Larned, 39-15, on Friday for a key district victory.

Hugoton led 32-7 with 7 minutes, 14 seconds left in the third quarter after Sawyer Harper threw his fifth touchdown pass.  Overall, Harper had six total scores (five passing, one rushing) as the Eagles improved to 3-4 on the season.


Class 2A

Eureka tops Belle Plaine in Kpreps Fan’s Game of the Week

Eureka won District 5 with a 33-14 victory against Belle Plaine. Eureka captured its first district title in at least 17 years with the win. Belle Plaine suffered its first loss of the season. The Dragons had allowed just 34 points all season entering the contest.

Belle Plaine led 7-0 until Eureka tied the score with 4:13 left before halftime.

Eureka did not have a home game last year because a tornado caused widespread damage to the football facility. Since it returned home in Week 4, Eureka is 4-0.

Eureka had huge non-offensive plays with a pick-six, a punt return and a kick return for a score. The teams had returns on three straight plays. Junior Brennan Lowe had the INT and punt return for a score. After Lowe’s punt return TD, Belle Plaine took back the ensuing kickoff for a score. Then, Eureka’s Garrison Spoonts returned the following kickoff for a touchdown. Lowe added two more rushing scores later in the game.


No. 1 Hoisington ends losing streak versus Phillipsburg

The Cardinals had lost five in a row against Phillipsburg from ’12-18, including two losses last season. In District 8 play, Hoisington defeated the Panthers, 56-28, in a game that was moved up an hour because of impending weather. Wyatt Pedigo rushed 10 times for 278 yards and three scores, including an 81-yard touchdown run on the game’s first play from scrimmage.  

Cade Mason cleared 100 yards for the first time with 124 yards and a pair of scores, according to Hoisington broadcaster Cole Reif.

Hoisington is 7-0, while Phillipsburg is 2-5. The defending state champion Panthers have lost five of six.


Class 1A

Oakley outscores La Crosse to end four-game skid

In District 6, Oakley ended a four-game losing streak with a 47-34 home victory against La Crosse. The Plainsmen improved to 3-4, and La Crosse fell to 5-2. The Leopards have dropped two straight contests. It marked Oakley’s first district victory since a 4-0 mark in 2015. Since then, Oakley was 0-3 in district play in ’16, ’17 and ’18 and lost 22-14 to Ellis last week.


Plainville and Ellis postponed until Saturday

District 6 remains open-ended after Friday. No. 3-ranked Plainville (5-1, 1-0) will face rival Ellis (3-3, 1-0) in a game that will now be played at 4 p.m. on Saturday because of weather.


Elkhart claims District 8 title

The Elkhart Wildcats are District 8 champions after Friday’s 49-8 win over Stanton County. With District 8 being the only three-team district in Class 1A, the Wildcats have not completed their district schedule by collecting wins over Syracuse last week and the Trojans on Friday night.


Eight-Man, Division I

Lebo surprises Maranatha Academy behind McEwen’s big night

Lebo scored 30 points in the first quarter and finished off a 62-36 upset of Maranatha Academy to force a three-way tie for second place in the District 3 standings.

The Wolves, which suffered an improbable district loss to one-win Valley Falls earlier this season, have now beaten quality opponents in Chase County and Maranatha in consecutive weeks.

On Friday night it was the Devan McEwan show as the quarterback passed for 383 yards and seven touchdowns in the victory. McEwan also rushed for 92 yards and two more scores.

Kyle Reese was the beneficiary of McEwan’s hot hand in catching seven passes for 234 yards and two scores. Andrew Bailey and Luke Davies also had two touchdown catches each, while Kaden Ott had one of his own.

Maranatha’s Nate Burdette passed for 150 yards and three touchdowns, and added 143 yards and a score on the ground.


Cedar Vale-Dexter routs Oswego; Sedan escapes

In District 1, Cedar Vale-Dexter clinched a wild district that has featured many close games. The Spartans improved to 6-1, 4-0 in district play with a 56-8 victory versus Oswego. The Spartans have won four in a row, including a 36-28 victory against Sedan in Week 5.

Sedan (5-2, 3-1) moved into the second spot with a 50-48 victory versus Central Burden. The victory clinched the district title for Cedar Vale-Dexter. The Spartans opened 5-1 last year but then lost three in a row, including a 22-16 loss to Oswego.


Ness City shuts out Kiowa County after weather delay

One of the weather delayed games that did finally conclude Friday was Ness City’s 24-0 victory against Kiowa County in District 6. The second half started around 10:30 p.m. after a two-plus hour delay. Ness City led 6-0 at halftime improved to 7-0, 4-0 in district play. The Eagles will travel to Hodgeman County (6-1, 4-0) for the district title last week. Hodgeman County won at rival Spearville, 46-28.


Hill City, Victoria to finish on Saturday

In District 7, Victoria and Hill City were playing in a game that is expected to decide the runner-up showing behind Clifton-Clyde. Victoria won the contest, 42-41, last year. Hill City leads Victoria, 30-22, in a game that was halted at the beginning of the fourth quarter because of weather. It will be resume at 11 a.m. on Saturday.


Eight-Man, Division II

Frankfort shocks Axtell on the final play

Frankfort scored on a 32-yard touchdown heave from Gavin Cornelison to Branden Bussmann on the game’s final play to beat top-ranked Axtell, 24-20.

Axtell, which played without all-state quarterback Quinn Buessing, took a 20-18 lead with 3:25 remaining on a Mitchell Buessing touchdown run. He then seemingly iced the game with an interception of a Frankfort pass with a little more than a minute to go.

But Axtell was unable to stay in bounds on a third down play with 38 seconds left, giving a glimmer of hope for Frankfort.

When the Wildcats took over and completed a long pass in to Axtell territory in which the clock all but expired. The officials talked to both coaches and correctly put a few seconds back on the clock for Frankfort’s final play.

Cornelison avoided the rush, stepped up in the pocked, and hit Bussmann in the end zone on the left side to set off the celebration.

WATCH – Frankfort’s Cornelison to Bussmann for the game-winner on as time expired!

Cornelison passed for 88 yards and the one touchdown. Bussmann caught three passes for 51 yards. Garret Dalinghaus led the Wildcats with 175 yards rushing and two scores. He scored twice in the first quarter to give Frankfort a 12-0 lead.

Axtell’s backup quarterback, freshman Isaac Detweiler play well for a second straight week. Detweiler tossed a pair of touchdown passes to Derek Buessing in the first half to turn a 12-0 deficit into a 14-12 lead at halftime.

Detweiler passed for 143 yards and rushed for a team-high 57 yards.

This is the second consecutive week the No. 1 team in 8M-II has lost after Axtell ended Hanover’s 48-week run atop the rankings with last week’s 28-26 win.

Frankfort remains unbeaten at 7-0 and will host Hanover (6-1) next week. Axtell (6-1) will host Doniphan West (3-4).


Minneola waits out the weather and beats Ingalls

Minneola claimed the 8M-II, District 8 championship with a 58-14 victory over Ingalls.

The game was significantly delayed due to weather, but may have finished around the same late hour as last year’s shootout won by the Wildcats, 92-80.

Minneola led 14-0 after one and 36-8 at halftime.

Senior Tuck Lang had a huge night in rushing 36 times for 299 yards and six touchdowns. For the season, Lang now has 1,479 rushing yards and 26 scores.

In last year’s high-scoring game, Minneola’s Jeremy Pfaff rushed 55 times for 502 yards and nine touchdowns.

Minneola is 5-0 in district play and claims the District 8 title by virtue of wins over the two teams (Ingalls and Otis-Bison) that have 4-1 district records.


Osborne rolls past Northern Valley

Osborne earned a 48-0 victory versus Northern Valley. The Bulldogs, ranked third in Eight-Man, Division II, could move up in the polls this week with the logjam between Axtell, Hanover and Frankfort.

The Bulldogs scored 32 points in the first quarter in a game that ended at halftime. Senior Steele Wolters completed three of four passes for 58 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed five times for 75 yards and two scores. Both of Mason Schurr’s receptions went for touchdowns.


Six-Man Football

Cheylin leading Natoma in key six-man game; Moscow stays perfect

Cheylin (6-0) was at Natoma (4-2) in a contest with critical six-man playoff implications. Cheylin led 33-6 with 27.1 seconds left in the first half when the game was suspended because of lightning.

After a delay of around two hours, the teams are expected to resume play at 5 p.m. Saturday in Rexford-Golden Plains, a site much closer to Bird City than Natoma.

Cheylin standout junior quarterback Colton McCarty has fought an AC joint issue in his shoulder the last two weeks. He is slowed in the running game but completed 5 of 8 passes for 159 yards and three touchdowns. Junior Andrew Schields delivered a big game with a five-yard TD reception, and rushing scores of 26 and 40 yards.

Defensively, Cheylin has dropped its defensive average nearly 40 points a game from ’18. Schields finished with two pass breakups, including a key one on fourth down near the goal line, and a tackle for loss. Junior Tyler Sabatka had a tackle for loss and TD receptions of 35 and 65 yards. Cheylin was 4 of 4 on fourth down.

In the 6-Man South Division, Moscow improved to 7-0 with a key 51-0 victory versus Pawnee Heights. The Wildcats delivered its first shutout of the season and versus the 4-3 Tigers. Moscow has allowed just 18 points a contest. The Wildcats led 33-0 after the first quarter.



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