By CONOR NICHOLL & Chet Kuplen - Sports in Kansas
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In a huge Sunflower League matchup, No. 1 Lawrence is the only undefeated 6A team at 6-0 after its close 21-20 win versus Olathe North. It marked ON’s first loss of the year. Olathe North scored with less than a minute remaining but went for two and missed the conversion. Cole Mondi had the tackle on the conversion. Lawrence’s Devin Neal, the state’s No. 1 recruit, rushed for 157 yards and three touchdowns, including a 98-yard fourth-quarter run. The class has seven one-loss teams. This could be the state championship as Lawrence is on the west and Olathe North on the east.
Shawnee Mission Northwest’s Ty Black is second all-time in Kansas history in career completions. Black has committed to Air Force. Shawnee Mission North’s Will Schneider has the career completions with 635 from ’13-16. SMNW held off Gardner-Edgerton, 38-35, in a home victory. SMNW will play Bishop Miege on Friday in a game just announced Saturday morning. Black is proving himself as a major contender for Sports in Kansas 6A Player of the Year in Kansas so far in 2020.
In 6A East, Olathe North is 5-1, Shawnee Mission Northwest and Olathe East are 4-1. Blue Valley Northwest and Blue Valley are 3-1. OE took its first loss of the season with a 34-10 road loss to Mill Valley. On 6A West, Junction City is 6-1 after a 62-15 victory versus Emporia after Andrew Khoury passed for 369 yards and three scores.
Lawrence, who is on the west bracket, is the only unbeaten 6A team in Kansas at 6-0. Seven one loss teams, five two loss teams, seven three loss teams. A lot of parity in the class w/ battle tested teams.
No. 1 Wichita Northwest beat Wichita East, 17-2, and won the City League title. Northwest has not lost to East since 1984. Gabe Williams earned overall player of the game, Geremiah Moore was the offensive player, Nathan Hale on defense and Carson Arndt with special teams. All of the points came in the first half. Northwest is 5-0.
No. 2 Mill Valley improved to 5-2 with the 34-10 win versus Olathe East. MV was tied at seven after the first quarter and outscored OE, 27-10, in the second quarter. Lineman Ethan Kremer continues to perform at a high level for Mill Valley. Jacob Hartman filed in at running back for the second straight week and cleared 300 yards in total offense.
No. 4 Maize held on to beat Derby, 36-35, in a matchup of AVCTL Division I rivals. Derby is second in 6A. Maize beat Derby for the first time since ’14. Maize outscored Derby, 10-0, in the fourth quarter. Josh Sanders enjoyed another massive game with 22 carries for 138 yards and two scores. Sanders, who transferred from Wichita Heights after a first team all-state season, has 136 carries for 1,070 yards. In the fourth quarter, Cole Segraves kicked a 41-yard field goal and kicked the game-winning extra point.
No. 5 Bishop Carroll beat Bishop Miege, 56-35, in the first matchup between the Catholic powers since the ’12 state title game. BC had 191 rushing yards from Hunter Trail. BC is 4-2 and now gets St. Thomas Aquinas this week to completely arguably the most challenging regular season schedule in recent state history. Miege, the six-time defending state champions, is 2-3. Carroll is the only team to beat Junction City and Kapaun; teams that are a combined 11-0 in all other games. Miege is ranked No. 1 in 4A.
Maize South beat Hays High, 21-20, and gave HHS its first loss of the year. However, the story was HHS’ new quarterback, junior all-purpose threat Jaren Kanak. Hays High has run two quarterbacks with Dylan Dreiling and Jordan Dale, though both were in COVID-19 quarantine. Kanak, with KU and K-State offers, finished with 36 carries for 184 yards and two touchdowns. He also completed 5 of 6 passes for 90 yards and a TD.
Hays High scored and elected to go for two with 2:38 left, but missed the conversion, according to HHS broadcaster Dustin Armbruster. Maize South standout linebacker Brandon Bowles, the defensive leader and featured in preseason on Sports in Kansas, finished with 15 tackles and has 75 stops in six games. He made the tackle on the two-point conversion. Colin Shields has had a huge year for Maize South over six games with 66 percent completion while passing for 1,336 yards and 16 TD/4 INT. The 5A class has had very, very solid play in QB this season.
Goddard continued to offensively improve behind quarterback Kyler Semrad and receiver Jake Shope, the state’s leading passer and receiver, respectively. Semrad had five total touchdowns, and Shope scored three more times. Goddard is 6-1 after a 4-6 season last year when Semrad, who has started in all four seasons, was hurt much of last fall. Goddard beat Salina Central, 36-18. Goddard has delivered 34.4 points per contest after 18.6 last fall. Semrad has passed for 2,058 yards to lead the state this season (26 TD/ 6 INT).
No. 1 Wichita Northwest (5-0) and No. 4 Maize is 7-0. Maize is the only 7-0 squad in 5/6A. In 5A East, Topeka Seaman and De Soto are both 6-1, while Mill Valley (5-2) and No. 3 St. Thomas Aquinas is 4-2. De Soto quarterback Jackson Miller delivered 179 rushing and 105 passing yards with three total touchdowns, two rushing and one passing. De Soto captured the United Kansas Conference for the second straight year.
Alec McCuan has has rushed for 1,294 yards and 14 touchdowns this year to lead the 5A classification in rushing for Hutchinson (6-1). Hutch is one of the biggest turnaround programs in the state this season.
Just two unbeaten teams in 5A football: Maize (7-0) and Wichita Northwest (5-0). Six one loss teams, five two loss teams, seven three loss teams. Class is very battle bested and deep.
Jackson Miller of De Soto (6-1) has had another big year 1,012 rushing (16 TD) and 917 passing (13 TD).
Eudora quarterback Zeke Reazin was 7 of 10 passing for 186 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for 59 yards. Paola defeated Eudora, 31-26. Paola is ranked second in 4A. Eudora is 2-5.
Quietly, Rose Hill has turned around its season with four straight victories and stands at 4-3. RH had four wins in the last two years combined. RH is looking for its first winning season since ’11. Rose Hill also lost to 6-1 Wichita Collegiate in OT. Collegiate is a 7-0 squad. Rose Hill features Division I lineman Noah Bolticoff, a TCU commit. Bolticoff was also featured in the preseason on SIK.
Coffeyville’s Ethan Camp finished with 25 carries for 224 yards and two scores. Coffeyville defeated Chanute, 27-24.
No. 4 McPherson’s Dylan Rinker recorded 325 passing yards in two quarters. The Bullpups won at Mulvane, 52-0. McPherson stands at 6-1.
Basehor-Linwood, known for its offense, upset defensive-minded Lansing, 33-26. Lansing is ranked No. 5 in 4A. Isaac Stanton cleared 200 passing, and Zach Sisemore delivered 200-plus rushing.
Tonganoxie’s Branden Martin continues to have a big year for the No. 3 Chieftains. Tongie beat 6A Shawnee Mission East, 35-0. Tyler Bowden, the state’s leading rusher, delivered 28 carries for 150 yards and a touchdown. Senior Blake Poje completed 13 of 17 passes for 193 yards and four scores against zero interceptions. Martin led with nine tackles. Bowden has rushed 217 times for 1,725 yards and 24 touchdowns. Martin is up to 109 tackles, nine for loss this season. He delivered 346 for K.C. Piper in his first three years and continues to move closer to the rare 500 career tackle total mark.
No. 2 Paola (7-0) and Fort Scott (5-0) are the only undefeated teams in 4A. Fort Scott held off Wamego, 22-18, with a goal line stand on the game’s final play. The Tigers were 1-8 last year and nice turnaround for Bo Graham in his second season with the program. Three one loss teams, three two loss teams, eight three loss teams. 18 of the 32 teams have a losing record.
Ryan Andrew had 121 yards and three touchdowns in the first quarter last night for Augusta.
Will this be the year McPherson can get to a title game in 4A? They’ve had some very talented players step up in the 6-1 start. Dylan Rinker has passed for 1,759 yards in his first year as the starter and sophomore running back Jaytin Gumm has rushed for 869 yards on the ground. They have very capable recievers with Aaron Powell (625 yards), Trey Buckbee (499 yards) and Gus Ruddle (325 yards).
No. 1 Andale cruised again as Noah Meyer moved to the backfield Friday because of injuries. Andale beat Clearwater, 40-21 for its closest game of the season. The Indians are 5-2. Andale has won 19 straight games. Andale will face Wichita Collegiate for the district title next week.
Topeka Hayden beat Perry-Lecompton, 10-0, in a matchup of district rivals and Top-5 teams. No team scored until 1:28 remained in the fourth quarter. Hayden had fallen twice to P-L in ’19. Hayden has allowed just 20 points in the last four weeks with two shutouts. Hayden also has a 42-28 victory versus 6A Manhattan. Hayden is 6-1, 3-0, and P-L is 6-1, 2-1. However, as KPreps noted this week, there is a good chance that Baldwin (1-4, 1-0) will take the second spot in the district. Baldwin missed its games against Hayden and P-L because of COVID-19. Baldwin ended an 18-game winning streak with a win versus Santa Fe Trail.
Wichita Collegiate stands at 7-0 and defeated Halstead, 33-0. It’s a week after Halstead running back Lakin Farmer rushed for the second-most yards in a single game in Week 6. Collegiate has permitted just 43 points in four district games. Overall, the Spartans have scored at least 31 points in every contest.
No. 4 Southeast of Saline moved to 6-0. Senior quarterback Jaxson Gebhardt finished 9 of 11 passing for 242 yards and four touchdowns. He also rushed 12 times for 131 yards and a score. He also had one running and a passing 2-point conversion. Michael Murray recorded two catches for 120 yards and two scores. SES, the No. 1 ranked 3A defense, will face Scott City for the district title this week. SES has allowed just 32 points.
Scott City moved to 5-2, 4-0 with a 28-0 victory versus Colby. Scott City quarterback Harrison King passed for 209 yards and three touchdowns. SC clinched its 34th straight non-losing season, according to Western Kansas News.
Columbus remained perfect at 7-0 as Gabe Martin delivered 24 carries for 279 yards and two scores, along with one reception for 24 yards. Quarterback Jaxson Haraughty was 5 of 5 passing for 38 yards, along with 11 carries for 108 yards and a touchdown. Columbus defeated Parsons, 38-20, and will face Caney Valley this week for the District 1 championship on the line.
Goodland quarterback Leyton Cure, in his first game back from injury since Week 3, delivered 32 carries for 157 yards and four touchdowns. He completed eight of 15 passes for 159 yards and another score. Goodland is 3-3, 1-2 in District 6.
Chapman, which returned in Week 6 after quarantine, had another big game from quarterback Trevor Erickson. He rushed seven times for 57 yards and a score, and completed 6 of 7 passes for 98 yards and a touchdown. Chapman is 3-2.
Holcomb’s Levi Knoll delivered seven catches for 170 yards and two touchdowns, the majority coming in the first half. Holcomb won at Pratt, 35-22.
Larned delivered a nice 48-18 road win versus Hugoton with big games from Andreus Tucker and Brady Hope. Tucker finished with 130 rushing yards and two scores, along with 83 receiving yards and a pair of TDs. Brady Hope picked off two passes. Larned is 2-4, 1-2 in District 8 and has won two in a row after several close losses to top teams (Hoisington, Haven) earlier in the year.
Prairie View upset Frontenac 28-22 on Saturday afternoon in a key 3A district matchup at home. The district now has four 3-1(1) or 2-1 (3) teams heading into the last week of the season (Burlington 3-1, Frontenac ,Prairie View, Girard all at 2-1).
No. 1 Rossville beat No. 2 Silver Lake, 50-35, in the longtime War on 24 rivalry. Rossville (7-0) continues to lead 2A by a big margin in scoring offense. The game was tied at 14 after the first quarter. Rossville quarterback Torrey Horak completed 8 of 13 passes for 178 yards with a 2/1 TD/INT ratio. He also rushed 22 times for 161 yards and two scores. Senior Woodrow Rezac finished with 13 carries for 106 yards and a TD.
No. 3 Hoisington is 18-1 since the start of last year, the only loss was a 10-8 defeat at Norton’s Travis Field in the Class 2A state semifinals. This year, Hoisington won 33-6 and outscored Norton’s 27-0. Holt Hanzlick cleared 100 rushing yards with the Cardinals’ deep stable of backs.
Haven upset No. 4 Hutchinson Trinity, 20-18, and earned its first winning season since ’01. Picked as a KPreps Potential Breakout Team in the preseason, Haven has been featured on SIK several times this fall, especially with quarterback Darby Roper and Hunter Barlow, a four-year starting lineman. Roper had a pair of key scores, along with an interception. Trinity is 6-1, Haven at 5-2.
No. 5 Maur Hill returned from its quarantine after it missed its key game versus Nemaha Central last week. MH stayed undefeated at 6-0. Andrew Schwinn had 170 rushing yards, along with four total touchdowns, and 12 tackles.
TMP has enjoyed its best season since ’02 with its sixth straight victory and moved to 6-1. The Monarchs trailed Cimarron, 12-3, and came back with a pair of late scores. Junior Jace Wentling caught a pair of two touchdown passes, including a four-yard pass late in the fourth quarter. Also the team’s kicker, Wentling scored all 16 of the team’s points. The Monarchs won, 16-12, at Lewis Field Stadium. The Monarchs have already clinched its first winning season in nine years. Cimarron, without standout running back Tate Seabolt because of a leg injury suffered several weeks ago, took its first district loss since ’15. TMP’s Kade Harris had another big game with 79 rushing yards and 107 passing yards. He set up the first TD with a long punt return and the second score with an interception.
Minneapolis’ Trent Moeckel threw for four touchdowns and rushed for one. Spencer Davidson accounted for four TDs. Keyon Baccus and Colton Bradford each recorded 10 tackles. Minneapolis stands at 3-4, 2-2.
Ellis won its second straight game and wrapped up a playoff berth out of District 7 with a 47-12 home win versus Southwestern Heights. The Railers still had at least one key player in COVID-19 quarantine and beat Southwestern Heights at home. Mason Gottschalk finished with 205 rushing yards and four touchdowns, along with 15 tackles. Tegan Cain delivered 90 passing yards, 60 rushing and a touchdown. He picked off a pass on defense. Konnor Pfeifer finished with 96 rushing yards and two touchdowns, along with 14 tackles.
Beloit sophomore Benson Berndt finished with 261 rushing yards and two scores. Beloit is 2-5, 1-2 in District 8 after the 34-26 loss to Minneapolis.
Osage City has been a nice surprise and is 6-1 on the year with a 4-0 district record. Also impressing in their district is West Franklin at 3-1 as they’ve won three in a row after going 1-8 last season. Coming into the district many may have favored Eureka and Humboldt who currently sit at fourth and fifth in the six team district.
Hillsboro has quietly won four games in a row and got a forfeit victory over Lyons on Friday. A win over Hutch Trinity would give them the district championship Friday.
No. 2 Centralia defeated No. 5 Lyndon, 48-17. Centralia moved to 5-1.
Oakley won just eight games from ’16-19 and were a KPreps Potential Preseason Breakout Team back in August. The Plainsmen are 5-2 under fourth-year coach Jeff Hennick and have clinched a playoff berth. Ethan Abell finished with 22 carries for 275 yards and five touchdowns. He has 1,131 rushing yards this year.
No. 3 Smith Center defeated Ell-Saline, 46-13, and won its sixth straight contest. SC and Inman will play for the district championship next week. Sophomore Jake Sasse finished with 243 rushing yards and four rushing touchdowns.
Alma-Wabaunsee quarterback Cade Oliver was 10 of 15 passing for 224 yards and four touchdowns. Oliver, a starter since his freshman year, has led a nice turnaround for the Chargers. Wabaunsee is 3-4. The program was 3-24 in the last three years.
Inman’s Carter Brown has 73 tackles. Inman is 6-1, 5-0 in District 3 and has won six in a row. The Teutons defeated Whitewater-Remington, 54-13.
Eight-Man, Division I
No. 4 Clifton-Clyde beat Argonia-Attica, 64-16, in a game scheduled late last week. A-A was 6-0.
Oswego sophomore Jake Hutchinson recorded nine carries for 159 yards and two TDs. He delivered nine carries for 159 yards and two scores. Oswego is 6-1, 3-1 after the 68-22 road victory versus West Elk.
South Gray, featured at Sports in Kansas this past week, held on to beat Hodgeman County, 22-20 and moved to 7-0. SG and No. 2 Wichita County will play for the district title next week. HC is 4-3. Aaron Skidmore finished with 21 carries for 90 yards and two touchdowns, and was 4 of 7 passing for 43 yards.
Kimble Martin returned the opening kickoff for a score and finished with an interception in the fourth quarter. Ethan Reed played well on the line, along with two tackles for loss and a sack – all on a late drive in the fourth quarter. SG has played well in all three phases and head coach Grant Salmans has given great credit to offensive coordinator Jeff Blattner and Ty Clark, the defensive/special teams coach.
Lincoln continues to enjoy a sizable turnaround with coach Dustin Patee. Tyler Good enjoyed another huge game with 192 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns, along with 18 tackles, 2.5 for loss. Lincoln beat Bennington, 26-12, and Landon O’Hare delivered three sacks. Lincoln is 5-2, 3-1 in District 4 and has won three straight. The Leopards had six victories in the previous four years.
Chase County’s Trint Rogers finished with seven carries for 118 yards and five touchdowns in a 54-0 victory versus Udall. Mitch Budke also delivered seven carries for 133 yards and two score. He recorded seven tackles, a forced fumble and threw a pair of two-point conversions. Chase County stands at 5-2, 3-1. CC had just six total wins in the last three years and has its first winning season since a 6-3 season in ’16.
Sedan has quietly went 7-0 this season under head coach Mick Holt. They have three shutouts as a team and another game where they allowed just six points. Their closest game this season was 48-38 over Oswego but outside of that it was a 30-point win over Yates Center. The Blue Devils have Marmaton Valley next week and should start out the playoffs with an 8-0 record.
Madison has dominated competition all year and has allowed a touchdown or less in four of their wins this year and haven’t allowed more than 24 in any contest while scoring at least 53 in all. Hunter Engle leads the rushing attack while Casey Helm has been big at the quarterback positon along with Drew Stutesman in the receiving game.
Ryan Kuckelman of Macksville had a huge night in the win over Kiowa County last night with 20 rushes for 289 yards and eight touchdowns. He also passed for a TD in the game.
Eight-Man, Division II
Hartford’s Shayden Sull, behind a strong offensive line performance, finished with 18 carries for 309 yards and six touchdowns versus Marias des Cygnes.
No. 1 St. Francis beat Wheatland-Grinnell, 62-16, in a game that was called early in the third quarter. Sainty is 7-0 and has won every on-field game by the 45-point margin. SF improved to 30-2 with coach Nick Fawcett. Shadyron Blanka enjoyed another huge game with 31 carries for 307 yards and six touchdowns, along with 11.5 tackles.
No. 3 Victoria moved to 7-0, 5-0 and clinched the district title with a 58-0 win versus Tescott. Jayvon Pruitt returned after he missed the last contest. Grant Schoenrock accounted for 89 offensive yards and three touchdown.
Caldwell beat South Barber, 42-14, behind 167 offensive yards and three offensive scores from Trey Strnad.
The six-man playoffs are set to open Tuesday. No. 4 South (Burrton) is at No. 1 North (Cheylin). No. 4 North (Northern Valley) is at No. 1 South (Cunningham).
No. 3 South (Moscow) is at No. 2 North (Natoma). No. 3 North (Golden Plains) is at No. 2 South (Ashland). Great Cheylin senior Colton McCarty has 116 total touchdowns and has a chance to set the state’s all-time scoring mark for all classes.
Also, a special shout out to Pawnee Heights and Cunningham for playing 4-man football earlier this week. Yes, you read that right. PH didn’t have enough to play 6-man so the two schools had a 6-man game that Cunningham would win last week. Regardless of school size or participants its just to see adapting to what we have to make it work.
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