District Preview: Class 3A

Norton sophomore QB Jace Ruder. (by Everett Royer, KSportsImages.com)
By: Conor Nicholl & Matt Gilmore for Kpreps.com
Oct 13, 2015

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The state’s largest classification remains the deepest classification thus far in 2015.

Class 3A features ten teams that remain undefeated and eight other teams with only one loss.

The top five teams in the Class 3A poll have remained the same all season. Defending champion Rossville has dominated opponents behind all-state quarterback Tucker Horak. The Bulldawgs’ closest game was a 34-point win against Rock Creek in Week 3.

Wichita Collegiate and Scott City have impressive wins against Andale and Ulysses, respectively. Meanwhile Halstead has dominated everyone, expect for a hard-fought 18-6 win over Hesston in Week 2.

Silver Lake appears to be gaining momentum behind quarterback Dalton Dultmeier. The Eagles posted two, one-point overtime wins to open the season over Holton and Perry-Lecompton.

Nemaha Central and Hoisington also appear well conditioned for deep postseason runs.

Other unbeaten contenders include Tri-Valley League champion Cherryvale, Central Plains champ Garden Plain, and Twin Valley League champion Washington County.


District 1   (Gilmore)

  • Riverside (2-4) – The Cyclones have lost to good teams in Jefferson West, Nemaha Central, Perry-Lecompton, and Royal Valley. Bryer Miller leads the offense with 498 rush yards and has scored four touchdowns. Gaige Olivero has scored six times and rushed for 303 yards. While the Riverside offense typically focuses on the run, sophomore quarterback Andrew Miller has thrown for 439 yards and four scores but has been intercepted nine times.
  • Sabetha (2-4) – Despite just a 2-4 mark, the Blue Jays will look to repeat as district champions. Sabetha’s four losses have come to opponents that are a combined 18-6. Senior Brock Frey leads Sabetha with 601 rushing yards and three touchdowns, while Trae Snyder has added 420 yards and one touchdown. Quarterback Brandon Poe has thrown for 253 yards and a pair of scores.
  • Hiawatha (0-6) – The Redhawks have lost 16 straight games since a first-round playoff win over Riley County in 2013. Hiawatha has scored just 34 points this season, and 22 of those came in a Week 1 loss to Atchison County.
  • Horton (0-6) – The Chargers broke a five-year playoff drought last season with a 7-1 regular season before a playoff loss to Centralia. This year’s team is committed to a balanced offense with junior quarterback Cameron Smith. Smith has thrown for 755 yards and a couple of touchdowns, but he has been intercepted seven times. Sophomore Conner Dean leads the team with 282 rush yards and two scores.

Key Games: (Wk 7) Sabetha at Riverside will likely decide both playoff spots 

Winner: Sabetha
Runner-up: Riverside

District 2    (Nicholl)

  • Nemaha Central (6-0) – Nemaha Central collected the big Week 5, 27-13, victory against Holton. It marked the first victory for Nemaha against the Wildcats since 1995 and ended Holton’s 48-game winning streak in the Big Seven. The Thunder held Holton’s great offensive attack to 192 yards on 56 carries. Nemaha Central ranks fourth in 3A in defense (48 points) and ranks fifth in offense (251 points). The Thunder went 7-3 last year.
  • Centralia (3-3) – Centralia, which shift back down to 2-1A after this season, already has more losses this season than a 9-2 year in 2014. The Panthers are 1-3 on the road, including a Week 2 37-34 loss to Troy, a 32-6 loss at Washington County in Week 5 and a 59-13 loss to Rossville last week. The Panthers get Nemaha Central at home this Friday, at St. Marys and home versus Rock Creek.
  • Rock Creek (2-4) – Rock Creek has taken blowout losses at Rossville (55-21 in Week 3) and Silver Lake last week (41-14, although Rock Creek led 14-6 at the half). The Mustangs lost 27-17 to Clay Center in Week 2 and at Riley County, 36-34, two weeks ago.
  • St. Marys (1-5) – First-year coach Myron Flax, the longtime former coach at WaKeeney-Trego, has lost every game by at least 16 points. St. Marys’ lone victory is a Week 3, 14-6, home win versus Wabaunsee.

Key Games: (Wk 9) Rock Creek vs. Centralia will decide the runner-up spot

Winner: Nemaha Central
Runner-up: Centralia

District 3    (Gilmore)

  • Pleasant Ridge (5-1) – Pleasant Ridge has won five consecutive games since a season-opening 42-30 loss to an Atchison team that’s still unbeaten. The Rams are averaging 41.7 points per game and giving up 17. Senior quarterback Nick Holmes has rushed for 638 yards and 12 touchdowns, while throwing for 549 yards and seven more scores. Brandon Broddle and Jagar Haack have added 378 and 339 rush yards, respectively, with each scoring four touchdowns. 
  • Maur Hill-Mount Academy (4-1) – Before last season MH-MA had not posted a winning season since 2004.  The 2014 Junior Ravens went 7-3 and hung with Silver Lake for a half in the playoffs. has not made the playoffs in each of the past ten seasons. Harry Trotter is having a big senior season with 754 rushing yards and nine touchdowns. He rushed for 912 yards and 13 scores a season ago. David Olberding has provided balance in passing for 566 yards and eight scores.
  • Atchison County (2-4) – The Tigers have posted only 12 total wins over the past four seasons since a couple of strong playoff teams in 2010 and 2011. This season the Tigers have beaten winless Hiawatha 30-22 and won at West Franklin 32-31. In their four losses, the Tigers have averaged only 8 points per game.
  • McLouth (1-5) – The Bulldogs’ lone win was against winless Horton back in Week 2.  Since, McLouth has lost four straight and been shut out the past two games.

Key Games: (Wk 8) Pleasant Ridge at Maur Hill-Mount Academy

Winner: Pleasant Ridge
Runner-up: Maur Hill-Mount Academy

District 4     (Gilmore)

  • Rossville (6-0) – Top-ranked Rossville is loaded for a run at repeating as Class 3A champions. The Bulldogs have one of the most dynamic players in the game in senior quarterback Tucker Horak. Horak has rushed for 1,143 yards and 20 touchdowns on only 64 carries. He is averaging 17.9 yards per carry. Horak has also passed for 947 yards and 14 touchdowns on 60 of 71 passing, or 84.5 percent. Dawson Hammes has added 522 rushing yards and six touchdowns, while Jacob Bradshaw has added 341 yards and five scores. Cole Schumacher is the Dawgs’ leading receiver with 18 catches for 373 yards and six scores.  
  • Silver Lake (6-0) – The Eagles began the season with a pair of one-point, overtime wins at Holton and at Perry-Lecompton. Junior Dalton Dultmeier has emerged at quarterback in passing for 1,025 yards and 12 touchdowns, but has thrown nine interceptions. Dultmeier has added 213 yards rushing and five scores. Hunter Howerton leads the Ealges with 471 yards rushing and eight touchdowns.
  • Oskaloosa (4-2) – The Bears losses have come to Jackson Heights (40-24) and Pleasant Ridge (38-6). Through the first five games, Kyle Hopkins leads Oskaloosa with 735 yards rushing and 13 scores, while Dillion Grother has added 474 yards rushing and seven scores. Freshman quarterback Jaxson Webb has managed the offense that averages 343 rushing yards per game.
  • Osage City (3-3) – Four of Osage City’s six games this season have been decided by eight points or less. The Indians have lost games by 6 to Mission Valley, 8 to Council Grove, and 6 to Lyndon. The Indians defeated Northern Heights 20-17 back in Week 4. Quarterback Ryan Haskins is Osage City’s primary option on offense.   

Key Games: (Wk 9) Rossville at Silver Lake. Once again, look no further than the War on 24 to decide both playoff spots.

Winner: Rossville
Runner-up: Silver Lake

District 5    (Gilmore)

  • Wellsville (4-2) – Wellsville’s two losses have come to Prairie View by 1-point and Eudora by a couple of touchdowns. The Eagles fell 3-0 in overtime to Prairie View in Week 1 of the 2014 season. Wellsville is led by speedy back Zach Strawn and quarterback Tony Dougan.
  • Jayhawk-Linn (3-3) – The Jayhawks are 3-3 under first-year coach Randy Leach and recently captured the championship of the Three Rivers League – 11-Man Division. In the last four games, Jayhawk-Linn has averaged 32.5 points per game and has won three of those four games.
  • West Franklin (1-5) – West Franklin’s lone win came 33-13 against winless Herington. Nick Streeter has been the Falcons’ primary weapon on offense. Streeter rushed for 206 yards and two scores in a loss to Mission Valley, and 294 yards and three scores in the win over Herington.
  • Central Heights (0-6) – The Vikings are winless in their final season in the Pioneer League before leaving for the Flint Hills League in 2016. Central Heights has been shut out three times and scored only six points in each of the remaining three games. The Vikings are given up nearly 46 points per game.  

Key Games: Wellsville is a heavy favorite in this district, so (Wk 9) Jayhawk-Linn at West Franklin will be key in deciding the runner-up

Winner: Wellsville
Runner-up: Jayhawk-Linn

District 6  (Glmore)

  • St. Mary’s Colgan (4-2) – Since being shutout 7-0 against Galena in the season opener the Panther offense has averaged 39 points per game. Colgan has shown a remarkable ability to reinvent itself from week to week. In a 28-21 win over rival Frontenac, Colgan followed an experienced offensive line in rushing for 298 yards. In last week’s 43-40 loss to 4A-II No. 1 Columbus, Panther quarterback Ryan Cedeno passed for 370 yards and three touchdowns. Cedeno has thrown for nearly 900 yards and 11 scores on the season, while Joe Battitori has rushed for nearly 400 yards and seven touchdowns.
  • Humboldt (3-3) – The Cubs are 3-3 in the first year under Logan Wyrick. Humboldt quarterback Anthony Doran has passed for 1,027 yards and 11 touchdowns this season, but has thrown nine interceptions. Senior receivers Jake Haviland (373 yards, 4TDs), Corey Whitcomb (257 yards, 3TDs), Ryan Smith (225 yards, 2TDs), and Tyler Korte (133 yards, 3TDs have been Doran’s main receiving targets. Bryce Isaac leads the Cubs with 473 rushing yards and six scores.
  • Northeast-Arma (3-3) – The Vikings snapped a long playoff drought by qualifying as the District 6 runners-up last season.  Coach Phil Hobbs has done a great job at Northeast. The Vikings went 6-4 last season, and were 4-5 in 2012 and 2013. Prior to that, Northeast had won just five total games in the previous eight years combined. Drew Mills is a nice athlete at quarterback having passed for 556 yards and rushed for 557 yards and 12 scores.  
  • Erie (1-5) – The Red Devils snapped a 24-game losing streak with a 34-20 win over Oswego back in Week 2. Since then, Erie’s closest game was a 22-6 to Burlington in Week 4. The Red Devils have averaged 11.3 points per game.  

Key Games: (Wk 9) Humboldt at Northeast will likely decide the second playoff spot.  

Winner: St. Mary’s Colgan
Runner-up: Humboldt

District 7   (Gilmore)

  • Neodesha (5-1) – For the second consecutive season Neodesha is 5-1 entering district play, and for the second straight season that one loss came 20-14 to Cherryvale. The Blue Streaks average more than 33 points per game while giving up 13. Matthew Shinkle, Colton Cunningham, Izzy  Johnson, and McKadin Songer are the Streaks’ primary weapons on offense.   
  • Fredonia (4-2) – Fredonia’s losses have come to unbeaten Cherryvale and Burlington. The Yellow Jackets picked up a low-scoring 14-8 win over Humboldt last week.  Fredonia hasn’t reached the playoffs since the 2006 season.  
  • Caney Valley (3-3) – After graduating a talented senior class last season, Caney Valley saw its Tri-Valley League win streak end at 41 games with a 22-20 loss to Humboldt in Week 3. Since then, the Bullpups have also fallen to Cherryvale. Caney averages around 30 points per game.
  • Eureka (2-4) – Eureka’s two wins have come against 1-5 teams in Yates Center and Erie. After scoring only six total points in the first three weeks of the season, the Tornados have averaged 33 points per game the last three weeks.  

Key Games: (Wk 8) Neodesha at Caney Valley will likely decide both playoff spots

Winner: Neodesha
Runner-up: Caney Valley

District 8    (Gilmore)

  • Cherryvale (6-0) – The Chargers won the Tri-Valley League championship this fall by going 6-0 in league play. Brendan Menzer leads the Chargers with 608 rushing  yards and five scores, while quarterback Lane Raida has added 512 yards and 12 touchdowns on the ground. Zack Steed and Ian Pearson have also rushed for 374 and 249 yards, respectively Raida has thrown for 304 yards and four scores.
  • Galena (3-3) – Galena had lost three straight games prior to last week’s 34-0 shutout of Baxter Springs. The Bulldogs’ losses have come to good teams in Frontenac (4-2), Columbus (6-0), and Augusta (5-1). Galena also holds a 7-0 win in Week 1 over St. Mary’s Colgan (4-2).  
  • Riverton (1-5) – The Rams have the ability to grind out their veer option offense or hit Grant North out on the edge in the passing game. The 6-foot-6 North had nine receptions for 200 yards and three touchdowns in Riverton’s 29-13 win over Baxter Springs.   
  • Southeast-Cherokee (0-6) – Southeast has been shut out twice and is averaging just under eight points per game this season. Seniors Cameron Paasch and Chandler Jackson lead the Lancers with 261 and 196 rushing yards, respectively. Jackson has rushed for a team-high three touchdowns.

Key Games: In a traditionally competitive district, (Wk 7) Cherryvale at Galena may decide both playoff spots.  

Winner: Galena
Runner-up: Cherryvale


District 9

  • Chaparral (5-1) – The Roadrunners, 9-2 last season, are tied for No. 7 in scoring offense with 242 points. Chaparral features a quality home win versus Wichita Trinity (26-7) in Week 3. Chaparral’s lone loss came 35-30 on the road at unbeaten Garden Plain two weeks ago. Junior Jacob Jenkins has five 100-yard rushing performances with 81 carries for 770 yards and 16 scores. He also leads the squad with 12 TFLs. From ’04-14, Chaparral had lost nine straight to Cheney before a 21-0 win last season. It had lost 10 in a row in the same period versus Conway Springs before a 27-19 victory last fall.
  • Cheney (4-2) – The Cardinals, 4-5 or 5-4 during the last six seasons, have an opportunity to finally get to six wins. Cheney has road losses to Garden Plain (19-7) and Wichita Trinity (19-7). The Cardinals feature one of the strongest defenses in 3A with all-state senior lineman Noah Schomacker. Cheney has dropped six in a row to Conway Springs.
  • Conway Springs (4-2) – Conway Springs has matched last year’s loss total from an 8-2 season. The Cardinals have lost to Garden Plain (27-12) and at Trinity (47-22) last week. Conway Springs, traditionally known for its single wing, has averaged 269 rushing yards a contest and 6.6 yards per carry.
  • Belle Plaine (0-6) – Belle Plaine has not won a game since a 19-14 home win against Douglass in Week 8 of the 2012 season; some 25 games ago. The Dragons have one close game, a 14-6 loss to Douglass two weeks ago.

Key Games: (Wk 7) Conway Springs at Cheney; (Wk 8) Cheney vs. Chaparral; (Wk 9) Chaparral at Conway Springs

Winner: Chaparral
Runner-up: Conway Springs

District 10    (Nicholl)

  • Wichita Collegiate (6-0) – The Spartans have continued to roll behind quarterback Austin Waddell and have 3A’s No. 2 offense with 314 points. Collegiate has tallied 35 points in every game, including the big comeback 46-45 OT victory versus Andale in Week 3. Collegiate averages 392 total yards a contest, including 242 rushing. Waddell has completed 18 of 34 passes for 553 yards with a 7/2 TD/INT ratio. Senior Nathan Burgoyne has 71 carries for 560 yards and 12 scores.
  • Douglass (1-5) – Douglass has lost every game by at least 28 points and has a Week 5 road victory, 14-6, at Belle Plaine. Douglass is 3-12 in the last two years.
  • Leon-Bluestem (1-5) – Bluestem went 9-29 under Kyle Wallis since the beginning of the 2011 season. The Lions reached the playoffs in 2011 and 2014, but replaced Wallis in the offseason. From 2004 to 2011, the Lions went 1-62.  This season, Bluestem has five losses by at least 35 points. Bluestem’s lone victory is a 36-20 Week 3 home win against Belle Plaine.
  • Wichita Independent (1-5) – First-year coach Jeff Boone has kept the Panthers competitive. Independent has lost games by 16, four, 22 and 21 points. Independent collected its lone victory, 51-6, against Belle Plaine last week. Independent permitted 44.4 points per contest last year and is down to 32.8 this season.

Key Games: Collegiate is by far the best team in the district, and the other teams are close for the runner-up spot. Independent has been much more competitive than Douglass and Bluestem. (Wk 7) Independent at Douglass will be for the runner-up spot.

Winner: Wichita Collegiate
Runner-up: Wichita Independent

District 11   (Nicholl)

  • Garden Plain (6-0) – Garden Plain, with 30 all-time playoff appearances, had posted 4-5 records in each of the last two seasons. First-year coach Ken Dusenbury has elevated the Owls to the top of 3A. Garden Plain is top-15 in offense and defense in the classification. Senior Alex Becker has completed 23 of 54 passes for 483 yards with six scores against two interceptions. Four players have between 240 and 359 yards.
  • Halstead (6-0) – Halstead, one of the surprise teams last year with a 10-3 mark and run to the semifinals, has emerged as a strong state favorite in a deep classification. The Dragons have outscored opponents 227-25 and rank No. 1 in scoring defense and is tied for third in scoring offense. Last year, Halstead averaged 37 points per contest but permitted 17.5. The Dragons have averaged 396 rushing yards a contest. Senior Blake Beckett has 92 carries for 1,042 yards with 14 TDs, while senior Eli McKee had 69 carries for 617 yards and 10 scores. Beckett leads the squad with 45 stops and 10.5 TFLs.
  • Hutchinson Trinity (3-3) – The Celtics ran out to a surprising 8-0 start in 2014 before they lost their last two. Trinity had an average score of 34-13 last fall. This year, the offense has tallied just 12 points a contest, but the defense remains solid at 21 points per game.
  • Kingman (3-3) – Kingman ranked No. 4 in scoring defense with just 103 points allowed in 2014. However, Kingman tallied just 135 points en route to a 6-3 season. This season, the Eagles have tallied 127 points and scored 139 against the No. 12 SOS in the classification. Kingman started 3-0 before losses to Pratt, at Hoisington and at Sterling. Two of the losses have come by a combined five points; Kingman lost 42-0 at Hoisington.

Key Games: One of the state’s stronger districts, Garden Plain and Halstead are a step above Trinity and Kingman. (Wk 8) Halstead at Garden Plain will decide both spots.

Winner: Halstead
Runner-up: Garden Plain

District 12    (Nicholl)

  • Council Grove (5-1) – Council Grove, under first-year coach Nate Teichgraeber, opened with a 21-0 road loss to Northern Heights and then pulled off five straight victories. Council Grove started 6-0 last season and then dropped all three district contests. The Braves have averaged 326 rushing yards a contest. Three rushers have between 363 and 593 yards and five with at least 169 yards. Impressively, the Braves have just one turnover.
  • Hesston (5-1) – Hesston, 10-1 a year ago, has done a nice job of retooling after it graduated standout quarterback Grant Raleigh and returned just one defensive starter. The Swathers have permitted just 43 total points and have only a Week 2 road loss (18-6) to undefeated Halstead. Hesston collected a quality, 14-7, victory against Pratt last week. Hesston has rushed for 167 yards and passed for 98 yards a game. Hesston is plus-six in turnover margin.
  • Southeast of Saline (5-1) – The Trojans have been very dominant at times throughout the season and own a 55-14 victory versus Sacred Heart, a 48-8 win against La Crosse and a 21-6 victory two weeks ago. The NCAA champions, SE Saline’s lone loss came in Week 2 at Chapman (14-10), a game where the Trojans had a sizable statistical edge across the board, but turnovers proved costly. SE Saline has rushed for 182 yards a contest and passed for 162 a game. Junior Bryce Banks has completed 69 of 117 passes for 965 yards with 9/5 TD/INT ratio. He also leads the squad with 81 carries for 429 yards and six scores. SE Saline has eight turnovers but is plus-eight in turnover margin.
  • Hillsboro (0-6) – The Trojans have dropped back throughout the last two years and have not scored more than 14 points in a contest since Week 1. Hillsboro went 2-7 in 2014.

Key Games: (Wk 7) SE Saline at Council Grove; (Wk 8) Hesston at Council Grove; (Wk 9) SE of Saline at Hesston

Winner: Hesston
Runner-up: Southeast of Saline

District 13   (Nicholl)

  • Washington County (6-0) – First-year coach Doug Thompson has quietly done a tremendous job for a program that went 6-3 last year and hasn’t made the playoffs since 2010. That included big Twin Valley League home victories against Troy (36-18) and Centralia (32-6). Washington County has outscored opponents 242-43 and is tied for No. 2 in the classification in scoring defense. Senior quarterback Konnor Penning is in his third year as the starter.
  • Riley County (4-2) – The Falcons are perennially a playoff team and last year’s district runner-up on points. Coach Steve Wagner, in his 32nd season, has back-to-back road losses to Silver Lake and Rossville, but has quality victories against Olpe (55-30) and Rock Creek (36-34).
  • Marysville (2-4) – Marysville ended a 32-game losing streak with a 35-19 victory against St. Marys in Week 1. After not scoring the next two weeks, Marysville pulled off a big NCKL win, 6-3 in overtime against Clay Center, in bad weather conditions. Since then, the Bulldogs lost 27-13 to Concordia and 14-9 to Chapman.
  • Minneapolis (0-6) – The Lions, one of 2014’s big surprises with an 8-4 record, has dropped back this season. After multiple close wins last fall, the Lions are 0-2 in games decided by two scores. In each of the last four weeks, the Lions’ scores have progressively gotten higher: 24-14, 34-17, 32-25 and 66-35.

Key Games: This was a district that came down to points last season, but Washington County and Riley County are a cut above in 2015. (Wk 7) Riley County at Washington County will decide the spots.

Winner: Washington County
Runner-up: Riley County

District 14  (Nicholl)

  • Beloit (5-1) – After a rare down season with a 6-4 record in 2014, Beloit has returned to its former ways. The Trojans lost 21-6 at SE of Saline in Week 5, but have tallied at least 60 points three times. Beloit has just 29 players but plenty of quality. The Trojans average 339 rushing yards and 402 total yards a contest. Senior Jace Adams has 83 carries for 520 yards and five scores, while junior Caydren Cox has 41 carries for 438 yards and eight TDs. Senior Colson Reames has 66 carries for 411 yards and three scores.
  • Norton (4-2) – Norton has greatly struggled since losing senior all-purpose threat Gavin Lively to a long term knee injury in a 7-6 victory at rival Phillipsburg in Week 2. The Bluejays are 1-2 in its last three contests, including a rare 20-7 loss at Colby last Friday. Sophomore Jace Ruder has passed for more than 660 yards, while sophomore Tevin Petrie has 560-plus rushing yards. Junior Jacob Green leads the team with 56 stops, 13 TFLs, four forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries.
  • Russell (2-4) – One of the better Russell teams in recent history, the Broncos have doubled their win total from last season with a 34-17 victory against Minneapolis and a 42-16 versus Southwestern Heights. The Broncos have lost two games within a score and all four losses are within 25 points.
  • Thomas More Prep (1-5) – The Monarchs ended a 12-game losing streak with a big 38-16 road victory at injury-plagued Ellis in Week 2. Since then, it has tallied just 41 points in four straight losses.

Key Games: (Wk 8) Norton at Beloit

Winner: Beloit
Runner-up: Norton

District 15     (Nicholl)

  • Hoisington (6-0) – The Cardinals, a 9-2 team in 2014, are putting together what could be the best season in school history. Hoisington has won every contest by at least 16 points and tallied at least 34 in every game, save a 22-6 Week 2 road win against Nickerson. Hoisington averages 341 rushing yards a contest and 407 total yards a game. Junior Hunter Hanzlick has cleared 100 yards in every contest with 101 carries for 917 yards and nine touchdowns. Senior Steffan Dolechek has nine scores on 37 offensive touches with 688 all-purpose yards. He and junior Cameron Davis have each picked off four passes.
  • Ellsworth (4-2) – Ellsworth has four games by 14 points, including two by eight and seven points. The Bearcats took big losses to NCAA powers Beloit (60-15) and SE Saline (30-6). Ellsworth is a win away from matching last season’s 5-5 mark.
  • Sterling (4-2) – Sterling, normally a playoff team in recent history, fell back to 0-9 in 2014. The Black Bears have made great improvement with first-year coach Tyson Bauerle. Sterling opened the season with a 46-23 home win versus Hillsboro and then won at Smoky Valley, 6-0, in Week 2. Its other two victories are also close home wins versus Haven (26-22) and Kingman (28-27).
  • Lyons (1-5) – Lyons struggled to a 1-8 mark in 2014 and has continued its offensive struggles this fall, though did earn its first win, 39-6, versus Hillsboro last week.

Key Games: (Wk 9) Ellsworth vs. Sterling for the runner-up spot

Winner: Hoisington
Runner-up: Ellsworth

District 16    (Nicholl)

  • Scott City (6-0) – The Beavers, reigning Class 3A runner-up, was supposed to drop back slightly this year. However, Scott City has continued its dominance and collected the GWAC title with a 35-0 road win versus Ulysses, then a top-5 4A-I team, last week. The Beavers have permitted just 49 points and feature one of the state’s best tandems in seniors Wyatt Kropp and Cooper Griffith.
  • Cimarron (4-2) – Cimarron, on its third coach in as many years, has had no game closer than 17 points in wins or losses. The Bluejays finished 6-4 last fall and earned the runner-up spot.
  • Southwestern Heights (3-3) – The Mustangs have improved off a 2-7 season in 2014, but have dropped its last two games at Russell and at Hugoton. Southwestern Heights was 9-36 in the previous five years entering this fall and hasn’t made the playoffs since 2007.
  • Lakin (2-4) – Coach Chris Bamberger, in his first season with the Broncs after a highly successful tenure with Ness City, has never had a losing season as the head coach. Lakin dropped two one-point games in Weeks 3 and 4 to Elkhart and at Sublette: 15-14 and 13-12. The Broncs are 0-3 at home, 2-1 on the road.

Key Games: (Wk 7) Lakin at Cimarron; (Wk 8) Cimarron at SW Heights; (Wk 9) Lakin at SW Heights will decide the runner-up spot.

Winner: Scott City
Runner-up: Cimarron

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