By CONOR NICHOLL and Chet Kuplen - Sports in Kansas
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No. 3 Olathe North improved to 4-0 with a 28-7 win against Gardner-Edgerton. Jacob Parrish had a 67-yard touchdown run.
Blue Valley Northwest, led by coach Clint Rider, is arguably the state’s biggest surprise. BVNW is 3-0 after a 2-7, 1-6 in the EKL showing last year. It marks the best start for the program since ’09.
Wichita East won a key City League game at Wichita Heights, 16-13. A.J. King and Caqouy Patterson caught touchdown passes.
Undefeated teams: Olathe North (4-0), Blue Valley Northwest (3-0), Olathe East (3-0), Lawrence (3-0) and Wichita East (3-0).
No. 1 St. Thomas Aquinas trailed, 28-7, at halftime before a wild comeback led to a 35-34 home victory versus Shawnee Mission Northwest. SMNW (2-1) is ranked fifth in 6A. SMNW quarterback Ty Black, an Air Force commit, completed 18 of 29 passes for 237 yards and two touchdowns, both to Blake Reeder. He rushed for a pair of scores. For Aquinas, Maxwell Field stepped in with seven of 14 passing for 183 yards and a TD.
Tank Young rushed 26 times for 118 yards and two TDs, and Evan Kammerer’s only catch was a 77-yard touchdown. Young recorded TD runs of three and one yard in the fourth quarter. Aquinas took a 35-28 lead on an 84-yard punt return for a touchdown from Danji Brooks. With 38 seconds left, Ty Black rushed for a one-yard TD, but Aquinas stopped SMNW on a two-point play.
No. 5 Maize, the only 5-0 team in 5A or 6A football, beat Salina South, 58-13. The Eagles led 21-6 after the first quarter and 52-13 at halftime. Josh Sanders had 15 carries for 94 yards and three touchdowns. Sanders is up to 92 carries for 734 yards after he transferred from Wichita Heights.
Mill Valley, ranked No. 1 in 5A most of the season, bounced back from a pair of close losses to bigger schools and beat Lawrence Free State, 52-0. Quin Wittenauer has stepped up with 21 carries for 166 yards and four touchdowns, his fifth straight game with more than 100 yards. MV has ’19 first team all-state quarterback Cooper Marsh out with injury but leads 5A in scoring offense.
Maize South lost 34-33 to Hutchinson in Week 3 and was cancelled in Week 4. The Mavericks bounced back with a 30-10 road victory against Newton. The Railers entered as the No. 1 passing team in Kansas with quarterback Ben Schmidt. Running back Evan Cantu replaced injured Hunter Niemann with 162 rushing yards and a touchdown. Maize South’s defense limited Newton to under 200 yards.
Andover pulled an upset in a 14-7 road win versus Hutchinson. The Salthawks entered 4-0, and the Trojans improved to 3-2. Andover has already matched last year’s win total and continued its fine defense. The Trojans were fifth in 5A scoring defense with 15.3 points allowed a contest last season. This year, Andover has permitted just 59 points (11.8 a contest). This game was scheduled in midweek because of Derby’s quarantine.
In another contest scheduled mid-week, Class 5A De Soto defeated McPherson, 41-35, in a contest scheduled at Washburn Rural. Both teams are 4-1, and McPherson is ranked fourth in 4A. Credit to both teams for making this game occur. De Soto has taken a sizable step up in strength of schedule this season and has performed well. Gavin Williams recorded another 10-plus tackles.
Undefeated teams are St. Thomas Aquinas (4-0), Maize (5-0), Hays (4-0), Wichita Northwest (3-0).
No. 1 Bishop Miege picked up its first win with a 38-28 win versus St. James Academy in a matchup of ranked 4A squads. Last year, SJA upset Miege, 28-27, in the regular season, but the Stags still captured its sixth straight state title. Mack Moeller had 12 catches for 210 yards and three touchdowns. Tim Dorsey completed 20 of 27 passes for 270 yards and three scores. Both have received FCS offers, and Dorsey has committed to FCS Illinois State.
Chanute had its last two games cancelled and won at Independence, 53-14. Freshman Kaiden Seamster came in as the backup quarterback after the starter was hurt. He cleared 150 passing and 100 rushing yards and recorded six total touchdowns.
Sam Elliott delivered 21 carries for 366 yards and six touchdowns for Buhler. The Crusaders are 3-1 and have won three straight games, including a 41-21 victory at Augusta. Elliott, a junior, won state wrestling at 152 pounds last winter.
No. 2 Paola (5-0) and Fort Scott (3-0) are the lone undefeated squads. Fort Scott came back from missing two weeks and beat Labette County, 14-8. Fort Scott was 1-8 last season.
No. 1 Andale captured its 18th straight victory with a 66-7 win against Hesston. Andale and Canton-Galva are tied for the longest current winning streak in Kansas. Eli Rowland rushed for 194 yards.
In District 3, Santa Fe Trail captured its second straight victory with a 55-42 home win versus Bishop Ward. McClain Weekley delivered 21 carries for 338 yards and five touchdowns.
Concordia was expected to make a sizable jump, though lost TE/LB Chas Carlgren to a season-ending knee injury in the preseason. However, Concordia is atop District 5 at 4-1, 2-0 after a 47-35 victory at Clay Center. Quarterback Wyatt Trost rushed for 199 yards, along with nine of 12 passing for 110 yards and an interception. The offensive line led the way for 431 rushing yards.
Rock Creek won at Sabetha, 35-21, and improved to 3-1. RC’s only loss came in a 58-57 road game to Rossville, ranked No. 1 in 2A. Rock Creek’s QB/WR duo of Charlie Killingsworth and Brooks Whaley enjoyed another big game.
Killingsworth recorded 20 carries for 100 yards and a touchdown. He was also 15 of 27 passing for 232 yards and four touchdowns. Brooks Whaley finished with 10 catches for 173 yards and a pair of TDs. Rock Creek has scored 179 points in four games after 267 in a 3-6 year last fall.
In District 6, No. 4 Southeast of Saline moved to 5-0, 2-0 with a 32-8 victory at Colby. SES, the No. 1 scoring defense in 3A, has allowed just 24 points under defensive coordinator Chance Ptacek. SES, with its highly experienced team, had huge games notably from senior Jaxson Gebhardt and junior middle linebacker Matthew Rodriguez.
Gebhardt passed for a touchdown, rushed for a score and had a key pick-six. The 5-foot-9, 204-pound Rodriguez led the team in tackles in ’19 and again this year. He recorded 14 tackles, three TFLs and a forced fumble that led to a fumble recovery for a touchdown. Rodriguez also had a pair of key fourth down plays with a tackle and pass breakup. Senior Bryant Banks rushed 21 times for 114 yards, and senior Eli Harris averaged 43.4 yards on his punts.
In District 8, Holcomb and Cheney are both 5-0, 2-0 in district play. The Longhorns defeated Larned, 43-13. Kaden Johnson completed 12 of 21 passing for 229 yards and four touchdowns.
In District 5, Marysville, with just five returning starters and notably limited experience at the skill positions, won its first game of the year with a 58-0 victory at Council Grove. Jack Lott recorded six carries for 114 yards and three scores.
Undefeated teams are Columbus (5-0), Galena (4-0), Perry-Lecompton (5-0), Southeast of Saline (5-0) and three 5-0 teams in District 7 (Andale, Wichita Collegiate, Clearwater), and a pair in District 8 (Cheney, Holcomb).
In District 4, No. 5 Maur Hill improved to 5-0, 2-0 and will face Nemaha Central (3-2, 2-0) next week in a marquee game that will likely decide the district championship. MH defeated Atchison County, 53-6. Andrew Schwinn continued his terrific season with 17 carries for 257 yards and three scores. Schwinn has more than 1,000 rushing yards. He also again recorded double-digit tackles, three tackles for loss and an interception on a two-point conversion attempt.
TMP won the Ellis County rivalry with a 28-21 victory at Ellis. Monarch junior Jace Wentling delivered a pick-six with three seconds left for the victory. The Monarchs are 4-1 and have won four in row, the best start for the school since ’03. TMP has not had a winning record since a 5-4 mark in ’11. The Monarchs, Cimarron and Lakin are all 2-0 in District 7. Ellis’ Mason Gottschalk recorded 145 rushing yards and a score, along with 95 receiving yards. He delivered nine tackles with an interception.
In District 8, Phillipsburg captured its second straight victory with a 49-28 road versus Beloit. Ty Sides accounted for six touchdowns: three rushing, two passing and a punt return. The Sides family is synonymous with success with older brother Trey, Ty and younger sister Taryn.
Also in District 8, Ellsworth pulled the upset, 27-20, against Norton. The Bluejays dropped to 3-2 after a 3-0 start that included a victory against rival Smith Center. Trey Anderson had a kick return for a score and caught a TD pass.
No. 3 Hoisington moved to 5-0, 2-0 in District 8 with a 27-6 road win against Minneapolis, the first game on the Lions’ new turf. Minneapolis, after back-to-back upsets, stayed close until well into the second half. Josh Ball had a key rushing touchdown for Hoisington. Minneapolis lineman Keyon Baccus enjoyed another big game with 12 tackles, 1.5 for loss. Hoisington is 16-1 since the start of last season.
In District 1, Riverton won at Erie, 64-28, as fullback Derek Larison rushed for five touchdowns, including one from 65 yards.
Undefeated teams are Eureka (4-0), Rossville (5-0), Silver Lake (3-0), Maur Hill (5-0), Hutchinson Trinity (5-0) and Hoisington (5-0).
Centralia, ranked second and the defending 1A champions, moved to 4-1, 4-0 in district play and is atop District 2 that also includes Valley Heights and Jackson Heights. Devon Feldkamp rushed for 146 yards and three touchdowns, along with 49 receiving yards. He did not play in the second half in a 46-6 win against Jefferson County North. JCN entered 3-1.
In a rare non-district contest between Heart of America League rivals, Sedgwick improved to 5-0. Sedgwick and No. 1 Olpe are the only undefeated 5-0 teams in 1A. Sedgwick defeated Ell-Saline, 45-13. Connor Tillman was six of six on extra points and kicked a 25-yard field goal. Lance Hoffsommer completed 25 of 32 for 315 yards and three touchdowns.
Sacred Heart ended its 14-game losing streak with a 24-7 victory at Ellinwood.
Eight-Man, Division I
In District 4, Canton-Galva ran its winning streak to 18 games, tied with Andale for the longest current win streak in Kansas. No. 1 C-G defeated No. 5 Little River, 56-38. Little River had the edge in multiple statistics, including more plays, yards and first downs.
For LR, Jayden Garrison rushed 25 times for 177 yards and a TD, and Graham Stephens recorded 24 rushes for 97 yards and three scores. For C-G, Garrett Maltbie completed eight of 15 passes for 149 yards and three scores. Brayden Collins delivered 16 carries for 95 yards and two touchdowns, and Garrett Maltbie recorded seven carries for 89 yards and a pair of TDs.
Collins also had a receiving score, while Tyson Struber (KU, K-State offers) caught four passes for 70 yards and two touchdowns. Brandon Huff and Tyler Rummel each finished with double-digit tackles. Struber picked off another pass, his fourth of the season and 21st in his career.
In District 5, Argonia-Attica moved to 5-0, 2-0 with a 46-6 victory versus Pretty Prairie. The Titans’ Noah Phillips had 99 receiving yards and four touchdowns.
South Gray continued its surprise season with a 30-12 victory against Meade in a matchup of undefeated District 7 teams. SG is 5-0, 2-0 in district play, and Meade dropped to 2-1, 0-1. Aaron Skidmore delivered 28 carries for 212 yards and four touchdowns. He has 880 rushing yards and 20 TDs this season. Brady Deges blocked a pair of punts.
Sedan defeated Oswego, 48-38, in District 1 and moved to 5-0, 2-0. Oswego quarterback Lance Teal completed 11 of 16 for three touchdowns. Jace Landes also had 123 rushing yards and three rushing scores, along with 95 receiving yards and a pair of touchdowns.
In District 4, Lincoln improved to 3-2, 1-1 in a 28-8 victory versus Herington. Tyler Good finished with 25 carries for 166 yards, along with 25 total tackles and a pair of interceptions. Lincoln was 1-8, 1-8, 2-7 and 2-7 in the previous years and opened 2-0 this season. This marked the first win after Week 2 for Lincoln since a 70-14 season-ending victory versus Lakeside in ’15.
Undefeated squads are Sedan (5-0), Madison (5-0), Clifton-Clyde (5-0), Canton-Galva (5-0), Argonia-Attica (5-0), Pratt-Skyline (5-0), Wichita County (5-0), South Gray (5-0)
Eight-Man, Division II
In District 3, Frankfort upset No. 5 Axtell, 36-14, in a Twin Valley League rivalry game. It marked Axtell’s second straight loss. The game was tied at eight after the first quarter and Frankfort led 22-8 at halftime. Ethan Armstrong rushed 18 times for 142 yards and two scores.
Gavin Cornelison completed two passes, both for scores. Axtell sophomore quarterback Isaac Detweiler had another big game with 13 of 27 passes for 139 yards and a score. He also delivered 20 carries for 62 yards with a TD. Mitchell Buessing finished with six catches for 98 yards and a TD.
No. 3 Victoria improved to 5-0, 3-0 in District 5 and has taken major strides to lock up the district. In Week 4, Victoria earned a 54-22 home victory versus Sylvan-Lucas and then won 28-14 at rival Claflin-Central Plains on Friday.
After a scoreless first quarter, Victoria led 12-8 at halftime. Overall, Jayvon Pruitt rushed 22 times for 131 yards and three touchdowns. Grant Schoenrock completed six of nine passes for 89 yards with a TD and an interception. Schoenrock helped on 16 tackles.
Undefeated teams are Colony-Crest (5-0), Lebo (5-0), Hanover (4-0), Victoria (5-0). On Saturday afternoon, No. 1 St. Francis (4-0) beat Logan-Palco, 46-0, in a game that ended at halftime.
No. 1 Cheylin moved to 4-0 with a 55-26 win against Tribune-Greeley County. The Cougars, defending state runner-up, will travel to Natoma this week. Natoma is 3-0 and has not allowed a point. Colton McCarty and Andrew Schields have continued their remarkable careers with seven carries for 264 yards and three touchdowns. He also completed three of five passing for 47 yards and three TDs. Schields had three catches for 96 yards and three scores, along with a pair of sacks and five quarterback pressures. Logan McCarty had a score passing, receiving, along with a pick-six.
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