We highlight some impressive performances across the state class-by-class after week 10 of the 2019 football season. This update is presented by Kansas Turf, Nex-Tech Wireless, American Implement, Craw-Kan Telephone, Rainbow Commications, Rack Performance, Labette Bank, Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference & Eddy's Toyota of Wichita
More details below on individual teams, but big impressions came from the overall strength notably of the Eastern Kansas League and the Mid-Continent League. A key point in 2019 – and most other years – is strength of schedule during the regular seasons.
The EKL went 8-1 in Week 9. In Week 10, Blue Valley North pulled a slight upset over Gardner-Edgerton in 6A. As well, Blue Valley, Blue Valley West, Blue Valley Southwest, and Mill Valley all won in 6A/5A matchups.
Five-time defending champion Bishop Miege rolled in its 4A matchup. In a 5A game of two EKL teams, No. 1-ranked Aquinas beat St. James Academy for the second time this year.
Mid-Continent League – In 2A, Norton made the long trip to southwest Kansas and defeated unbeaten Cimarron. In 1A, No. 1 Smith Center and No. 3 Plainville both rolled to big victories. Notably, Plainville had a running clock just a few minutes into the third quarter against 7-3 Ell-Saline. Norton went 0-2 against Plainville and Smith Center to start the year, and the Cardinals’ only defeat is against SC. Plainville and Smith Center have played in the regular season and sub-state title game each of the last three years. Plainville won in ’16, while Smith Center won in ’17 and ’18 en route to the state titles.
Centennial League: Sure the league has had tons of talent and very good teams but we haven't seen a state champion in 5A or 6A in the league since 2008 (Junction City). We have Hayden (3A), Topeka (6A), Junction City (6A) and Manhattan (6A) all still alive. The 6A's will have to get by Derby, who has dominated the classification for the last seven or so football seasons. Shout out to this league for stepping up its game. Ky Thomas has likely been the most impressive player in the state this season for Topeka High. Junction City has really shined with Andrew Khoury at QB and Qua'Vez Humphries at WR. Manhattan features FBS commit Sam Shields paving the way for Dayne Aschenbrenner and B.J. Young. There's a lot of talent in this league this season.
The CNC league (Frontenac, Colgan) have teams that enjoyed quality wins and moved into the quarterfinals. In the eight-man ranks, the Northern Plains League (Osborne, Thunder Ridge), Twin Valley League (Hanover, Axtell) and Heart of Plains League (Hutchinson Central Christian, South Barber) each have multiple representation in the quarters.
The Frontier League has posted undefeated seasons in 4A from Paola and Tonganoxie, ranked third and fourth, respectively, in the classification. The teams did not play each other in the regular season.
Derby – The Panthers easily cruised over Wichita West, 49-13, in a home game. Derby has won 23 straight contests. It’s the most points the Panthers have allowed since Week 1, though the Panthers led 35-0 midway through the first half. Derby continues to outpace the classification in scoring offense and defense. Derby has five straight seasons of double-digit victories. Lem Wash rushed for three scores. Grant Adler has returned after missing some time with injury. He and Wash each threw a touchdown pass. Derby and Maize both come from AVCTL Division I.
Manhattan – For the second straight year, Manhattan defeated Free State in the playoffs with a 49-28 victory. Manhattan had a 456-331 edge in total yards, notably a 257-102 on the ground, according to the Lawrence Journal-World. FS’ running back Tyler Bowden capped a season that featured school records with 19 carries for 122 yards. Manhattan quarterback Dayne Aschenbrenner completed five of eight passes for 199 yards, and rushed 15 times for 86 yards. Lorenzo Wilhoite delivered 16 carries for 120 yards for the Indians.
Topeka – The Trojans, ranked fifth, defeated Lawrence, 56-35. Running back Ky Thomas and quarterback Da’Vonshai Harden have committed to Minnesota and KU, respectively. This is a big win for Topeka, which has considered itself a state title contender since the summer. Topeka has Thomas/Harden, arguably the state’s best 1-2 punch, and a stronger defense than years past. However, Topeka has struggled in Round of 16 matchups. From ’07-18, Topeka was 2-6 in Round of 16 matchups, according to Prep Power Index archives.
However, the Trojans have now made the quarterfinals in back-to-back years for the first time in school history. Topeka has never made a state title game and it’s only trip to the semifinals came in ’73. Thomas delivered 47 carries for 368 yards. Lawrence running back Devin Neal capped a huge season with 21 carries for 270 yards and four touchdowns. Coach Steve Rampy, though, deserves plenty of credit for turning around the Lions. Lawrence was 1-8 last year and went 8-2 this season.
Blue Valley North – BVN took four losses in each of the last two seasons but finished as 6A state champion and 6A runner-up behind quarterback Graham Mertz, a Wisconsin commit, and a host of other playmakers. Last year, BVN defeated 10-0 Gardner-Edgerton in the playoffs. This season, BVN entered Friday at 4-5, while G-E stood at 8-1.
However, BVN won 42-41 when it stopped the Trailblazers on a potential game-winning two-point conversion inside the final minute. G-E committed six turnovers. GE, which was ranked second in 6A, finishes at 8-2.
Olathe North – ON is the last Sunflower League team left. As expected, North cruised over KC Wyandotte with a 56-13 victory. Arland Bruce IV rushed for three touchdowns.
Junction City – Last year, JC made the long Week 9 trip to Dodge City and lost. This fall, the Blue Jays made the repeat trip and won 54-7. DC had been 9-0 and was the No. 2 scoring defense in 6A. The Blue Jays scored 41 unanswered points after Dodge City cut the margin to 13-7. After a rare losing season in ’18, JC has doubled its win total to 8-2. Dodge City finishes a surprising 9-1.
Blue Valley West – BVW has also improved by four wins. Riley Cummings has been one of the best stories of 2019 after he missed virtually all of the last two years with injuries. He rushed for 141 yards and a touchdown. David Brown recorded 235 receiving yards. Cummings, who first started as a freshman, has went over 1,000 yards with 190 carries for 1,032 yards and 13 touchdowns. He has scored at least one touchdown in all but one game.
Blue Valley North vs. Blue Valley
Olathe North vs. Blue Valley West
Derby vs. Manhattan
Junction City vs. Topeka High
Maize – The Eagles have bounced back from its big loss to Class 6A Derby in Week 8. Maize has a 49-14 win versus Liberal, and a 31-0 victory versus Emporia on Friday. Emporia was one of the stronger Centennial League teams with lineman Hayden Pauls (Iowa State commit) and a win versus Junction City. Maize, a semifinalist last season, led 7-0 after the first quarter and 24-0 at halftime.
Camden Jurgensen has enjoyed a nice year in place of Caleb Grill, a Top 11 selection last year. Jurgensen completed 12 of 20 passes for 170 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed 18 times for 160 yards and a score. Preven Criston delivered three catches for 82 yards and two touchdowns. Caden Cox rushed 18 times for 114 yards and a score.
Bishop Carroll – Carroll intercepted five passes in a 35-7 win versus Andover.
Maize South – The Mavericks pulled away from Hays High in a 41-10 victory and did not allow an offensive touchdown. Maize South has permitted just 23 points in the last month.
Aquinas – The Saints won its 21st straight contest with a 34-7 win versus St. James. Tank Young delivered 33 carries for 255 yards and three scores.
Mill Valley – MV has played one of the toughest schedules in the state as they lost three of their first four ballgames. They’ve won six games in a row since that start as they handled Olathe West 42-6 on Friday. MV into the round of eight for the seventh time in school history.
DeSoto – The Wildcats have cruised all season but will get by far their toughest test of the season next week against Mill Valley. Many question the schedule of De Soto but they’ve taken care whats in front of them. De Soto is in the round of eight for the sixth time in school history.
Blue Valley Southwest – Into the quarterfinals for just the second time in school history as they last made it in 2011. The Timberwolves (3-6) played one of the best schedules in Kansas in the regular season in the EKL which resulted in just one win. They’ve taken care of business over their first two playoff games but will have a rematch against Aquinas this coming week as they lost earlier this season 62-7.
Wichita Northwest – Northwest has allowed just 69 points all season over the first 10 weeks. The offense has also scored the most in 5A this season with 52.4 points per game in 2019. Reagan Jones is one of the top playmakers in Kansas. Rematch this week with Carroll who they beat 21-17 in week one. The defense of Northwest has four shutouts this season.
De Soto vs. Mill Valley
Aquinas vs. Blue Valley Southwest
Wichita Northwest vs. Bishop Carroll
Maize South vs. Maize
Tonganoxie – The Chieftains, led by quarterback Blake Poje and running back Cooper Cunningham, are 10-0 for the first time in school history. Tonganoxie beat Spring Hill, 45-24, and owns two win versus SH this year. As well, the Chieftains have had big seasons from Cole Sample and Connor Searcy. Poje completed eight of 22 passes for 118 yards with a touchdown. Cunningham delivered 35 carries for 261 yards and three touchdowns. As well, sophomore Sam Kleidosty had four carries for 94 yards and two scores. Searcy was hurt all last season and then returned to win a state wrestling title. He led with 11 tackles, and Sample (Pitt State offer) had five stops. Cunningham has cleared 2,000 yards with 227 carries for 2,006 yards and three scores. He has more than 100 yards and a TD in every game. Searcy and Sample are 1-2 in tackles and TFLs on the team. Searcy has 87 stops, 12 TFLs. Sample is at 50 tackles, 14 TFLs.
Bishop Miege – Miege running back Brison Cobbins had touchdowns on his first three offensive touches. Miege cruised to a 57-16 win versus Bonner Springs. Daniel Jackson (Minnesota commit) finished with seven catches for 217 yards and TD scores of 38 and 39 yards. Tim Dorsey finished with his first 300-yard passing game with 12 of 18 for 305 yards and four scores. The defense picked off five passes in the first quarter.
Chanute – Chanute is 9-1 after a 30-21 victory versus Louisburg. The Blue Comets were 4-5 last season and are in the round of eight for the first time in seven years. Nice work by first year head coach Clete Frazell. Briley Peavy and Ty Bowman are two of the top playmakers in 4A football this year. Bowman, who stands 6-foot-5 and weighs 210 pounds as a quarterback, just picked up a PWO offer at Kansas State where he could fit into multiple positions with his 4.6 speed. Chanute has had one of the better turnarounds in the state this season.
You may have not expected to see Ark City in this spot coming into the year but they have a very decieving record at 4-6. Bulldogs have won four of their last five and have improved as they beat a Winfield team (13-3) they lost to in week one (20-18). Mac will be the favorite on paper this week but you absolutely can't over look a team thats hot in the playoffs like AC is right now. Ark City made it this far one year ago with a 4-7 record. We expected to see some teams like this in the 4A West Bracket with a lot of the teams all beating up on eachother throughout league play and the regular season.
We still continue to be impressed with Andover Central. Yes, after the first few weeks we kind of figured that out but we cant say coming into the season we expected them to be a 9-1 team that could make a run into a title game after a 5-5 mark in 2018. Shomari Parnell has been about as good as you can ask for as has Trey DeGarmo. Matthew Macy and Xavier Bell also so impressive under first year head coach Derek Tuttle. This team has some dudes.
Tonganoxie vs. Bishop Miege
Paola vs. Chanute
McPherson vs. Arkansas City
Andover Central vs. Buhler
Topeka Hayden – The No. 2 Wildcats beat Jefferson West, 14-6, and improved to 9-1. The win was similar to the 13-6 district victory against JW. Hayden limited the Tigers’ offense and received a pair of touchdown passes by Johnny Holloway. Hayden has permitted just 73 points, in the top-5 in the classification. Andale is No. 1 at 68 points allowed. While 3A has been exceptionally deep this year, Hayden has shown that its ceiling might be the highest in the east. JW, ranked fifth, ends its season at 8-2.
Frontenac – The Raiders, ranked No. 3, moved to 10-0 and have permitted just 71 points all year. Ty Gates had a great leaping interception in the end zone. Frontenac defeated league rival Galena, 20-6, and earned the second win this season versus the Bulldogs. It marks the fifth time the Raiders are in the round of eight under Mark Smith. It’s the 19th time Frontenac has been to the round of eight in modern playoff era. Frontenac features a solid senior class of 16 seniors with an offense led by quarterback Jake Beckmann and running back Alex Johnson. Ryan Raio has had a huge year on both sides of the ball along with linebacker Drew Bollinger, Gates and Brant Chance on the defense. Senior Caleb Hemby, Kaleb Kroenke and Cale Bridwell have stepped up to have big years on the offensive side of the ball. They’ve also had some sophomores step up for big years including Cruz Blair, one of the best lineman in the CNC, along with standout defensive end Collin McCartney and FBS rising prospect Landon Dean (6’4” 220).
Andale – No. 1 Andale delivered a 49-0 victory versus Clearwater and beat the Indians for the second time this year. Eli Rowland picked off four passes and had over 100 yards rushing with three touchdowns. Rowland, Mac Brand, and Noah Meyer have had solid years running the football. Noah Meyer and Easton Hunter have also both spent time at quarterback this season. Scotti Easter is one of the top receivers in 3A and one of the best playmakers in the state defensively along with Brand. Dawson Chavez, Jake Engelbrecht, Carson Fair and Creighton Camp have also had big years on the defensive side. Andale has been a total team effort in their 10-0 record for 2019.
Beloit – The Trojans lost to Colby, 21-20, in district play. Beloit, though, won 28-14 at Colby. The Trojans have captured three straight wins and stand at 5-1 in its last six games. Colby, was undefeated at 9-0 and ranked fourth in 3A.
Prairie View is in the round of eight for the first time since 1970 and just the second time in school history. The Buffaloes are 10-0 on the season as they dominated Columbus 35-0 on Friday at home. They’ve allowed just seven points total over the last four week combined. PV has had five shut outs defensively. They’ve allowed just 70 points all year. They held Columbus to just 118 yards of offense, they had just two yards of offense at the half. Hunter Boone has nearly 3,000 career yards rushing. Otis Jacobs, Justin Scott and Dilan Schweer have also had big years offensively for the Buffaloes under head coach Kyle Littrell.
Perry Lecompton has had two back to back solid victories in which we would consider upsets in the 38-21 win over Wamego last week and the 35-21 win over Holton last week. The Kaws have won four games in a row. PL is in the round of eight for the fourth time in school history and the first time since 2008.
Cheney is in the round of eight for just the third time in school history. They’ve outscored opponents 428-to-168 this year on the way to an 8-2 record as they knocked off Colleigate 30-13 on Friday. Cheney has never been to a state semifinal.
Frontenac vs. Topeka Hayden
Prairie View vs. Perry-Lecompton
Scott City vs. Cheney
Andale vs. Beloit
Hoisington – The No. 1 Cardinals defeated Lakin behind another big game from Wyatt Pedigo. He rushed 10 times for 188 yards and three touchdowns. As well, he caught two passes, both for scores, for 88 yards. Mason Haxton finished with eight carries for 110 yards and a score. He was three of three passing for 91 yards and two TDs.
Silver Lake – The No. 2 Eagles had 376 passing yards and six scores from Cody Hay in a 62-21 win versus Riverton. The Eagles defense has allowed just 62 points while scoring 504 points this season.
Norton – Norton received big games from Kade Melvin and Carter Jones in a 34-0 road win versus Cimarron. Melvin found Carter Jones on a touchdown pass, and Melvin later had a rushing TD. Jones also returned a fumble for a score.
Nemaha Central (8-2) has won seven games in a row after their 1-2 start to 2019. The Thunder knocked off Rossville 29-21 in overtime on Friday to advance to the 2A round of eight for the second time in school history. Nemaha Valley had nine appearances in the round of eight while Baileyville B&B had 17. Dylan Schultejans has had a solid year at QB with over 1,300 yards passing. Gavin Duryea has also had a breakout year at running back. Bryce Uphaus leads the defense in tackles this season.
Humboldt is in the state quarterfinals for the second year in a row. Conor Haviland has over 2,000 yards rushing this year and Joshua Hull is one of the top lineman in the state in 2A. Humboldt in the round of eight for just the sixth time in school history.
Riley County has won seven football games in a row after their 1-2 start. RC is in the round of eight for the 10th time in school history. They’ve also made back to back round of eight appearances for the first time since they made it four years in a row from 1991-to-1994. They get a league rematch at home with Silver Lake who they lost to 25-0 in week three. Avery Brokenicky has had about as solid of a year as you can ask for a 2A defensive back this season while Deon Barnes has had a breakout year at running back for the Falcons. Garrett Harmison has also had a huge year at the QB spot for Riley.
Garden Plain has outscored opponents 514-to-120 this year on the way to an undefeated 10-0 mark. GP hasn’t had a game closer than 11 points this season. Huge showdown versus Hoisington this week. The Owls have 23 appearances in the round of eight. Matt Pauly has been one of the best players in 2A football this season.
Humboldt vs. Nemaha Central
Silver Lake vs. Riley County
Conway Springs vs. Norton
Garden Plain vs. Hoisington
Sedgwick – The Cardinals improved to 9-0 and will play host to Smith Center in the quarterfinals. Sedgwick defeated Meade, 34-12, and knocked off the Buffaloes for the second time this year. Gannon Resnik finished with 28 tackles in the win. Sedgwick’s Kale Schroeder has cleared 2,000 career yards both rushing and receiving. Sedgwick believes Schroeder is the first player in state annals to clear those thresholds.
Smith Center – SC ran fewer than 30 offensive plays and cruised to a 56-14 victory versus Republic County. Smith Center had multiple big touchdowns, including a 47-yard run from Trenton Colby, 12-yard fumble return TD off a kickoff by Griffin Kugler, a 23-yard touchdown run from Colton Shoemaker, and an 85-yard reception from Kugler. As well, Nate Hendrich had a 58-yard TD run as Smith Center led 35-0 midway through the second quarter.
Plainville – The Cardinals delivered a 53-21 victory against Ell-Saline, the third straight year Plainville has beaten E-S in the playoffs. Plainville led 26-0 after the first quarter. Jared Casey has five straight 100-yard games. He rushed 15 times for 162 yards and scores from five, 15 yards and one yard. Jordan Finnesy passed for 118 yards and rushed for 143 yards. Cody Crawford also delivered a nice game with a TD reception and a pick-six.
Jackson Heights – JH scored the only touchdown in overtime in a 6-0 win versus Valley Heights. JH has defeated VH for the second time this year.
Olpe is in the quarterfinal for the 18th time in school history. Olpe has allowed just 62 points all season while scoring 428. Olpe hasn’t had a close game since week four of the season where they beat Jackson Heights, 28-14. This week will be the biggest challenge of the season as they host Centralia.
Colgan is in the round of eight for the 33rd time in school history. Shawn Seematter, in his third year as the head coach at SMC, has the Panthers in the quarterfinals in all three of his years. They get Jackson Heights for the second year in a row in the quarters before losing to Olpe in last year’s semis, this year’s game away for the Panthers. Colgan knocked off Hillsboro on Friday, 29-21, at home.
Inman had just six playoff wins entering this season. They’ve already picked up two this season as they are in the round of eight for the first time since 1994 with their 43-13 victory over Elkhart.
Colgan vs. Jackson Heights
Olpe vs. Centralia
Smith Center vs. Sedgwick
Plainville vs. Inman
Eight-Man, Division I
Caldwell – The Bluejays held on with a 30-28 victory against Medicine Lodge, the second time Caldwell has defeated ML this year. Caldwell again controlled the clock and won the turnover margin. The Bluejays ran 68 plays for 327 yards, while ML had 48 plays for 271 yards. Caldwell had zero turnovers and was plus-1 in turnover margin. Caleb Noyes finished 10 of 20 passing for 138 yards with a pair of scores. He rushed 19 times for 93 yards. Standout running back Jude Stow did not play in the contest.
Canton-Galva has outscored opponents 570-to-39 this season. They have been the most impressive team in the 8-man ranks so far in 2019. Landon Everett has had a huge senior season out of the backfield. C-G in the round of eight for the eighth time in school history.
Madison has scored 603 points this season, the most in the 8-man ranks. They’ve allowed just 102. Madison is in the round of eight for the first time since 2012.
St. Francis has allowed just 30 points all season on their way to a 10-0 record. Brady Dinkel has been one of the best two-way players in the class with over 1,300 yards rushing and six interceptions on defense. Shaydron Blanka, Adam Krien, and Jesse Baxter have also had huge years for Sainty.
South Central, like SF and C-G, has been great on defense. They’ve allowed only 32 points all season. South Central has made the round of eight several times but has never advanced past the round of eight. Coldwater, however, had three state titles in the 1980s and 1990s before consolidation. Chayde Snyder and Gage Girk are key playmakers to watch for SC.
Little River is in the round of eight for the first time in five years as they are coming off an impressive 44-42 victory over Ness City. LR has had six shutouts this season after dropping their first game of the season to 8M-I favorite, Canton-Galva.
Hodgeman County is off to a 9-1 record this year. Isaac Salmans has over 1,500 yards of combined offense for the Longhorns while older brother Eli has rushed for 1,610 yards this season with 24 scores on the ground.
Leoti-Wichita County is in the playoffs for the first time since 1990 when the school was named just Leoti. Kayde Rietzke has been a breakout player this year for the Indians. They’ve had one of the best 8-man offenses in the state with 586 points this season in 10 games with a 9-1 recor as they knocked off Clifton-Clyde, 54-38, on Friday.
Caldwell vs. Madison
South Central vs. Canton-Galva
Little River vs. Wichita County
St. Francis vs. Hodgeman County
Eight-Man, Division II
Central Christian- Central Christian tied the best finish in school history and is into the quarterfinals for the fifth time. CC had previously made the quarters in ’84, ’96, ’16 and ’17. The Cougars defeated district champion Minneola, 64-18, in a game that was called with 2:56 left in the third quarter. Garrett Burns returned a fumble 50 yards for a score on the game’s first drive. He finished with 10 tackles, eight solo. Caleb Lambert completed 11 of 12 passes for 233 yards and four scores. He rushed four times for 78 yards and a pair of TDs.
Centre is in the round of eight for the first time in nine years. Jenson Riffel has been a breakout player this season for the Cougars. They’ve had six of seven shutouts over the last seven weeks. Centre took out Crest on Friday, 46-0, as they get Axtell this week.
Hanover, Axtell and St. Paul are all very capable of being title teams this season. St. Paul had some problems with Waverly but likely feature the best running back in the class in Adam Albertini. Axtell features the best QB in the 8-man ranks in Quinn Buessing and Hanover has been the powerhouse of 8-man football as of recent. There’s much more than the stars of the teams though as Axtell has had some big weapons step up as receivers this year, St. Paul is senior heavy and Hanover gets it done with everyone. Some of these schools have also had to use players from all four grades in key situations, not uncommon in the 8-man ranks. Axtell beat Hanover earlier this year and St. Paul season ended at Hanover last year in a game that wasn’t close. Hanover goes to St. Paul this year in which should be a better game than last season. Expect some good ones here in the 8M-II quarters.
Osborne may have more team speed than anyone in the state as far as 8-man teams go and have scored 498 points this season. Darrien Holloway leads the charge offensively with over 1,000 yards rushing as Mason Schurr and Steele Wolters have also had huge offensive seasons. Evan Garman also has over 100 tackles defensively to lead that unit Steve Tiernan has done nice work in his second stint with the program.
Thunder Ridge features one of the better two-way players in the 8-man ranks in Reece Struckhoff as they are in the quarters for the first time since 2012. They get Central Christian this week, a team that has scored 485 points over 10 weeks for a 9-1 record. Caleb Lambert has been the breakout player for Central Christian.
South Barber is always in the mix in the state playoffs and may be one of the least talked about teams in the 8-man ranks this season. Trevor Rooks has been outstanding with over 1,600 yards of offense at the quarterback in 2019. Gage Cantrell has been the top threat in the receiving game for South Barber.
St. Paul vs. Hanover
Centre-Lost Springs vs. Axtell
Osborne vs. South Barber
Thunder Ridge vs. Central Christian
Cheylin and Moscow defeated Golden Plains and Weskan, respectively, in rematches. For the first time since six-man staged a championship game four years ago, both teams will have perfect records. Cheylin quarterback Colton McCarty and end Drew Schields again had huge games. McCarty delivered 37 carries for 394 yards and five scores. He was 21 of 29 passing for 195 yards and three touchdowns. Schields finished with 16 catches for 145 yards and two scores.