The Pick List - Week 4

Jacob Jueneman & Hanover will look to take down No. 3 Axtell. (Everett Royer, KSportsImages),
By: Conor Nicholl, Alex Hammeke, Mark Schremmer & Matt Gilmore for
Sep 23, 2020

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Each Thursday throughout the regular season, The Pick List will feature six of the best match-ups across the state, and make our predictions on a handful of other games.

**We will only feature five games this week given one of the games on our poll (5A No. 1 Mill Valley at 6A No. 1 Lawrence) was cancelled.

Feature Games of the Week:

Goddard (3-0) at Andover Central (3-0)

One of the top early season storylines is the return of Goddard senior quarterback Kyler Semrad. He has started parts of all four years and led the Lions to a state runner-up finish two seasons ago. Last season, Semrad played only four full games.

The Lions averaged 31 points a contest when he played a full contest and 12 points per game in the other six after he suffered a season-ending injury. Goddard went 4-6 and then moved from 4A to 5A this fall.

One of the state’s best signal callers, Semrad completed 61 of 100 passes for 834 yards with a 12/4 TD/INT ratio. Senior Jake Shope has delivered 29 catches for 496 yards and eight scores. That included 12 catches for a school record 242 yards and four TDs in a 35-20 win versus Buhler. He delivered another touchdown catch in Week 2, and then had three scores more on 12 catches for 192 yards last week. Goddard is 3-0 and has averaged 37 points per game.

Andover Central, the 4A runner-up to Bishop Miege last season, beat Newton, 41-34, in Week 1, and then had its Week 2 contest cancelled at Buhler because of COVID-19. In Week 3, the Jaguars opened their new stadium with a 45-31 victory over Goddard-Eisenhower.

Central, still in 4A, took major losses from its 11-2 team last season, notably wide receiver and Shrine Bowler Xavier Bell and quarterback Shomari Parnell. Bell, the state’s Mr. Basketball, signed with Division I Drexel for hoops. Wide receiver Matt Macy and linebacker Trey DeGarmo also graduated.

However, senior Chase White has stepped in and played very well at quarterback with 36 of 53 passing for 517 yards with five scores against zero interceptions. Senior Jacob Rees has 23 carries for 148 yards and two scores, while junior Ashton Barkdull has delivered 19 carries for 209 yards and a TD. Seniors Kyle Kohman and Davin Simms have combined for 19 catches and three scores. Andover Central is already plus-six in turnover margin, while Goddard is minus-1.

Goddard’s only returning lineman is senior Rhett Brown. He has 17 pancake blocks. Senior Tyler Haskell has 12 pancake blocks.

This is generally a very close game. Last year, Andover Central won 38-21 in Week 3. Two seasons ago, Goddard pulled off a Week 3, 17-16 victory in overtime, and then won, 21-7, in the playoffs. In ’15, the Jaguars earned a 28-21 victory. Expect a similar close matchup, but Goddard will likely have the edge with an experienced Semrad.

Our Pick: Goddard 35, Andover Central 28 (Nicholl)


Wichita Collegiate (3-0) at Hesston (3-0)

Heading into the fourth week of the season, 15 Class 3A teams remain undefeated. Two of those teams – the Wichita Collegiate Spartans and the Hesston Swathers – will face off Friday in Hesston.

The Spartans cruised through their first two games, beating Mulvane and Wellington by a combined score of 112-3. However, Collegiate needed overtime to beat Rose Hill 34-31 last week. While all three of the Spartans’ opponents have been 4A teams, they have a combined record of 0-9.

Jacob Chugg scored the game-winning touchdown in overtime against Rose Hill, while Wesley Fair led the Spartan offense with 217 yards and three touchdowns on 28 carries.

Fair has led the Collegiate offense with 474 rushing yards through three games. Chugg has added 279.

The Swathers, meanwhile, will likely lean on their passing game. Quarterback Ryan Eilert has thrown for 534 yards as Hesston picked up wins against Haven, Hillsboro, and Pratt. Ben Bollinger has been the leading receiver with 294 yards.

This will be only the third meeting between Collegiate and Hesston in the past 10 seasons. The Spartans won 61-35 in the second round of the 2014 Class 3A playoffs, and the Swathers won 42-28 in the first round of the 2018 playoffs.

Collegiate head coach Troy Black, who is in his second season, directed Collegiate to a 6-4 record last year. Tyson Bauerle has led Hesston to a 24-10 record since taking over the program in 2017.

Our Pick: Collegiate 35, Hesston 27 (Schremmer)

1A No. 3 Centralia (2-1) at 1A No. 2 Valley Heights (3-0)

While the Twin Valley League only has three schools playing 11-man football, two of them are ranked in the top five in Class 1A. Those two will battle for the TVL title on Friday when Centralia travels to Valley Heights.

Valley Heights comes in undefeated with victories over Jefferson Co. North, Marysville, and Horton. Overall this season, the Mustangs have held their opponents to less than 13 points per game, and only 166 yards per contest. Valley Heights has also forced seven turnovers - five of those coming against Horton. The Mustang defense has also been effective at getting off the field in holding opponents to just 8 of 29 on third down.  

Offensively, the Mustangs are powered by their rushing game, which has averaged 342 yards per game. Valley Heights features three primary ball carriers with Jake Yungeberg leading the charge with 354 yards through three weeks. Trenton L’Ecuyer isn’t far behind with 267 yards and quarterback Cameron Beardsley has 230 yards. Valley Heights doesn’t look to pass much, but Beardsley has been effective in throwing for 217 yards and four touchdowns.

Centralia captured the 1A State Championship last fall with a late touchdown to top Smith Center. The Panthers opened this season with a 42-6 loss to Class 2A’s top-ranked Rossville. Centralia has since posted back-to-back victories over Troy and Jackson Heights, 46-0 and 30-12, respectively.

The Panthers have been able to build offensive progress with Devon Feldkamp and Ian Haverkamp. Feldkamp has provided 289 yards of rushing offense in the past two weeks while Haverkamp has added 210. The Centralia defense has also been stingy, holding Jackson Heights to 48 yards of offense last week.

Centralia has won the contest the past three seasons, capturing the Twin Valley League crown in the process. Valley Heights last beat Centralia in 2016, when the Mustangs won 51-36. The Valley Heights win in ’16 broke a twenty-seven game losing streak to the Panthers, who last won in 1988.

The last year that Centralia didn’t win the TVL crown was in 2016, when Troy went undefeated and won the 2-1A state title over Plainville. Valley Heights has never won the Twin Valley League crown since the formation of the league in 1994, with Centralia, Troy, Washington County, Frankfort, and Onaga capturing titles in that time frame. But an overwhelming majority of the TVL titles have been won by Centralia. This may be the year Valley Heights can claim the elusive TVL title.

Our Pick: Valley Heights 32, Centralia 26 (Hammeke)

8M-II No. 2 Hanover (2-0) at 8M-II No. 3 Axtell (3-0)

Likely the state’s best current eight-man rivalry – and one of the best for all classes – Hanover and Axtell again meet up with Twin Valley League and Eight-Man, Division II, District 3 ramifications.

Entering last season, Hanover had won 13 in a row against the Eagles. However, Axtell defeated Hanover, 28-26, in Week 6 last season. The win ended Hanover’s KSHSAA era eight-man state record 43-game winning streak. Axtell quarterback Quinn Buessing, a Shrine Bowler, state record holder and probably the best football player in Eagle history, suffered injury. Then-freshman Isaac Detweiler stepped in at QB and played well in the victory. In the sub-state title game, Buessing was back, and Axtell knocked off Hanover, 26-12.

This year, Hanover and Axtell are again considered the top-two Division II squads in the east. Axtell earned a quality road win versus Wheatland-Grinnell, 68-18, and then beat Topeka-Cornerstone Family, a non-KSHSAA affiliated school, 48-0. Last week, Axtell won versus Mankato-Rock Hills, 64-18.

Hanover has not permitted a point with a 46-0 win versus Pike Valley and a 58-0 win versus Onaga. Hanover did not play in Week 3.

Axtell lineman Kolby Talbot, a first team all-state player, is out with injury and is expected to miss substantial time. He has not played since Week 1.

Detweiler earned first team all-state honors at wide receiver as a freshman and has taken over at quarterback full-time this year. Overall, Detweiler has completed 40 of 51 passes for 522 yards with 15 touchdowns against one interception. He has also rushed for 15 rushing touchdowns on 25 attempts.

Mitchell Buessing has delivered 19 catches for 369 yards and seven touchdowns. George Volle has 10 catches for 76 yards and four TDs. Axtell has 17 players, one fewer than Hanover.

Hanover coach Matt Heuer is 152-27 at his alma mater. His roster features significant returners with multiple key seniors: quarterback Jacob Jueneman, all-purpose threat Colin Jueneman, running back Tyler Bonser, and linebacker Jacob Klipp.

Last year, Jacob threw for 1,521 yards with a 22/11 TD/INT ratio, along with 542 rushing yards and 12 TD. Colin scored 23 touchdowns, including five off kick returns.

Hanover is extremely dynamic on special teams, and turnovers will be very key. Last year, Hanover outgained Axtell, 274-273 in the regular season meeting. However, Hanover had four turnovers and Axtell was plus-3 in turnover margin. In the playoffs, Axtell held a 367-357 advantage and was plus-four in turnover margin.

It’s very possible Hanover has more all-around talent, but Detweiler is playing an extremely high level and performed excellent versus Wheatland-Grinnell’s solid defense.

Our Pick: Axtell 30, Hanover 26 (Nicholl)

6-Man No. 3 Ashland (2-0) at 6-Man No. 2 Moscow (3-0)

Kansas 6-Man football garners part of the spotlight this week as third-ranked Ashland travels to Moscow to take on the second-ranked Wildcats.

Moscow captured the fourth-annual 6-Man Wild West Bowl Championship last fall with a 52-6 win over Cheylin. Moscow completed a perfect 10-0 season in 2019 and have now won 13 consecutive games heading into Friday’s showdown with the Blue Jays.

Moscow graduated the 6-Man defensive player of the year in Austin Snyder, but return standout skill players including the lightning-quick Adan Granillo.

Granillo was a Kpreps 6-Man All-State selection last fall as a return man and is a primary feature of the Wildcat offense.

Gerardo Garcia and Trenton Kennedy will also need to play well for Moscow to win its 14th consecutive game.

Ashland opened the season with consecutive wins over Burrton (64-18) and Pawnee Heights (77-31). The Blue Jays were scheduled to travel to Deerfield last week, but the game was cancelled.

Ashland is led by seniors Braton Kay and Kash McPhail.

The Blue Jays have a relatively young roster with 11 of the 16 Blue Jays listed as either freshmen or sophomores.

Last year, Moscow won at Ashland, 44-27. It was one of five victories the Wildcats claimed by less than 20 points during their undefeated season.

Look for the Wildcats’ experience and speed to be the difference this week.

Our Pick: Moscow 46, Ashland 37 (Gilmore)

The Pick List:

Blue Valley North (1-0) at Blue Valley (0-1) – Blue Valley North

Gardner-Edgerton (1-0) at 5A No. 1 Mill Valley (2-1) – Mill Valley

Dodge City (1-2) at 5A No. 4 Bishop Carroll (2-1) – Bishop Carroll

Hays (3-0) at Garden City (1-2) – Garden City

Olathe West (1-1) at 6A No. 3 Olathe North (2-0) – Olathe North

Wichita East (1-0) at Wichita South (2-0) – Wichita East

De Soto (2-1) at Lansing (3-0) – De Soto

Kapaun Mt. Carmel (2-1) at Great Bend (0-3) – Kapaun Mt. Carmel

KC Piper (2-1) at Louisburg (2-1) – KC Piper

3A No. 3 Topeka Hayden (2-1) at Coffeyville (1-1) – Topeka Hayden

3A No. 1 Andale (3-0) at Halstead (2-1) – Andale

Hugoton (2-1) at 3A No. 5 Cheney (3-0) – Cheney

Sabetha (2-1) at Holton (2-1) – Holton

Eureka (3-0) at Humboldt (3-0) – Eureka

Garden Plain (2-1) at Douglass (3-0) – Garden Plain

Maur Hill-Mount Academy (3-0) at Republic County (2-1) – Maur Hill

Ell-Saline (2-1) at Plainville (1-2) – Plainville

Argonia-Attica (3-0) at Goessel (1-2) – Argonia-Attica

Burlingame (2-1) at 8M-I No. 4 Clifton-Clyde (3-0) – Clifton-Clyde

8M-I No. 2 Leoti-Wichita Co. (3-0) at Hodgeman County (3-0) – Wichita County

Hutchinson Central Christian (2-1) at Caldwell (3-0) – Caldwell


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