By Matt Gilmore & Mark Schremmer, Kpreps.com
Posted: October 6, 2012 - 2:05 AM
The two top teams in Class 6A did not disappoint as No. 2 Hutchinson avoided second consecutive loss by rallying to top No. 1 Derby 31-28.
All-State defensive back Tanner Higgins moved to the offensive side of the ball and made a major impact. Higgins carried only two times, but both went for touchdowns at the end of the second and fourth quarters.
The Salthawks led 10-7 late in the first half when Higgins took a pitch and weaved 52 yards for a touchdown with less than a second remaining.
Derby opened the third quarter scoring with a 28-yard Chandler Shantz touchdown pass to Kellan Sims as the Panthers pulled within 17-14.
On the ensuing kickoff, the ball was recovered by Derby at the Salthawk 20. Shantz then hit DeAndre Goolsby on a 19-yard touchdown pass to give Derby a 21-17 lead mid-way through the third quarter.
After Hutchinson missed a 39-yard field goal, Derby gave the Salthawks the ball right back as Kellan Sims was stripped of the ball at the Panther’s 17-yard line. Shortly after, Hutch quarterback Trevor Turner scored from 14-yards out to give the Salthawks a 24-21 lead with just over two minutes remaining in the third quarter.
Shantz connected with Sims again early in the fourth quarter to put Derby back on top, 28-24.
The Salthawks appeared ready to answer, but a fourth down carry was stopped short of the first down marker at the Derby 5-yard line.
The Salthawks would get another chance as Higgins scored from 14-yards out with just 1:19 remaining in the game to give Hutch the 31-28 win.
Higgins finished his offensive night covering 66 yards on those two touchdown carries.
Shantz threw for four touchdowns before being injured in the fourth quarter.
In the Central Plains League showdown, Garden Plain used a strong performance from Denver Doyle to knock out Conway Springs 41-21.
The Owls grabbed an early lead as Dylan Clark capped an 83-yard opening drive with a 9-yard touchdown run.
The teams traded punts, but the Owls’ punt hit a Conway Springs player and Garden Plain recovered at the Cardinal 20-yard line. Three plays later, quarterback Caleb Arnold scored from two yards out to put Garden Plain up 14-0.
Tanner Wood would get Conway Springs on the board in the second quarter, but Doyle would score the first of his three touchdowns after to put the Owls up 21-14 at halftime.
Conway Springs took the second-half kickoff and drove down for a score as Wood plunged in from 3-yards out. Doyle would answer with his second rushing touchdown to widen the Owl lead to 28-14.
Wood had one last answer as he scored from 15-yards out to pull the Cardinals within 28-21, but Arnold then hit Doyle on a 57-yard touchdowns pass to ice the game. Clark would add a late touchdown for Garden Plain to put the icing on a 20-point win.
Doyle and Clark each rushed for more than 100 yards on the night, while Doyle also caught three passes for 120 yards and a touchdown.
Wood led Conway Springs with 150 yards rushing on the night.
The Owls snapped the defending 3A state champion Cardinals’ 15-game winning streak; handing Conway its first loss since falling the Owls in the 2011 regular season.
Showdown in the Sunflower League turned out to be a bit one-sided as No.4 Lawrence Free State shutout previously unbeaten Shawnee Mission East, 28-0.
Free State continuously pressured Lancer quarterback Jordan Darling throughout the night and eventually sacked him seven times. The Firebirds picked off Darling three times in the first half en route to a 21-0 lead at the break. Demarko Bobo returned the last of those interceptions back for a 30-yard touchdown.
Free State would tack on a second-half touchdown pass from Kyle McFarland to Khadre Lane to widen the margin and keep the Sunflower League title in sight. Free State and SM East each sit with one league loss, while Lawrence and SM West remain unbeaten in league play.
A pair of 5-0 teams proved to nearly as identical on the field in the eastern side of Class 4A as St. James Academy took on No. 4 Eudora.
After a scoreless first half, Eudora broke through early in the third quarter as Andrew Ballock intercepted a St. James pass and returned it 42-yards to the Thunder 2-yard line. Ballock called his own number from there to give the Cardinals a 7-0 lead.
Eudora would expand that lead to 14-0 on a Markis Hill 7-yard run which was set up by a Ballock 91-yard scamper.
Alex King would get the Thunder on the board with 5:14 remaining in the fourth quarter. His 5-yard run pulled St. James within 14-7.
St. James would get the ball back on its own 20-yard line with 3:47 remaining in the game. That drive would result in a 30-yard touchdown run by Jake Bade to tie the game up a 14 with 1:01 remaining.
Eudora would fumble the ensuing kickoff, setting St. James up for a scoring opportunity. King would hit a 33-yard field goal as time expired to give St. James Academy the stunning comeback win, and a school record sixth win of the season.
Class 6A’s fifth-ranked Topeka High Trojans ran for nearly 400 yards to beat 5A’s second-ranked Emporia Spartans 40-26.
Trojans quarterback Raymond Solis and running backs Austin Tillman and Eli Weinbrecht each rushed for more than 100 yards as the team combined for 392 yards on 51 carries. Tillman ran for four TDs and caught another.
Emporia running back Dylan Jackson rushed for 168 yards and three touchdowns, but the Spartans’ air attack was grounded. Emporia quarterback Braxton Marstall was limited to 4-of-10 passing for 62 yards with two interceptions.
Topeka High improved to 6-0, while Emporia dropped to 5-1.
Third-ranked McPherson built a 28-12 lead and held on late to top No. 2 Mulvane 35-30.
Mulvane quarterback Ty Redington was limited in his mobility due to an ankle sprain suffered last week, but the senior quarterback still threw for more than 300 yards and three touchdowns.
While Redington typically supplements his arm with his ability to run, he was limited to just five yards on four rushes on Friday.
But his ankle had a larger impact on the Mulvane special teams as the Wildcats decided to opt for two-point conversions all night since Redington was unable to kick. Mulvane was unsuccessful on all five of their two-point conversions which proved to be the difference in the game.
McPherson quarterback Kyler Kinnamon, battling an injury of his own, threw for 177 yards and two touchdowns while adding 97 yards rushing and a score. Marcus Hougton also saw some time at quarterback for the second straight week, and threw for 140 yards and two scores.
Austin O’Bannon led the Bullpups with 121 yards rushing on the night.
Maize South has gained attention for its defense this season, pitching three shutouts and allowing only 24 points through the first five games. However, it was Wichita Collegiate’s defense that came up big in a 17-14 win over the Maize South Mavericks in the Kpreps Game of the Week as voted on by the Fans.
Spartans defensive lineman Mitch Copeland caused two fumbles that led to touchdowns in the first half.
After a 40-yard Markus Phox punt return, Max Moxley hit a 29-yard-field goal which proved to be the difference for Collegiate.
Collegiate, ranked fifth in Class 4A, improved to 5-1. Maize south dropped to 5-1.
Class 3A’s top-ranked Silver Lake Eagles topped the previously unbeaten Rossville Bulldogs 32-12 in the War on 24. It was Silver Lake’s 13th consecutive win in the longstanding rivalry game.
The Eagles, who had been using a two-quarterback system, put the ball in the hands of junior Dailin Kruger, and he delivered by completing 11 of 19 passes for 223 yards and a touchdown.
Silver Lake led only 6-0 at halftime but pulled away with 26 points in the second half.
A gutsy call by the Blue Valley Tigers lifted them to a 29-28 win on Thursday night against Class 5A’s fourth-ranked and previously unbeaten St. Thomas Aquinas Saints.
Blue Valley wide receiver Mikey Henson pulled in a 21-yard touchdown pass to pull within 28-27 with just less than a minute left in the game. Instead of tying the game with an extra point, the Tigers gave the ball to Henry McGrew, who ran in the 2-point conversion for the lead.
Aquinas attempted a 45-yard field goal as time expired, but it fell short.
The game was back and forth all night as Blue Valley jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter, and the Saints responded with the game’s next four touchdowns for a 28-14 lead with a little more than eight minutes left in the fourth quarter. McGrew scored on a 2-yard TD run to pull within seven points with about four minutes left.
Blue Valley’s offense was led by running back Ryan McNerlin, who rushed for 108 yards on 28 carries, while catching seven balls for 68 yards.
The Tigers improved to 3-3.
In a key 8-man game in District 1, South Haven had little trouble with previously unbeaten Udall. The Cardinals won 62-12 in a game that was called in the third quarter.