Friday Playoff Fresh Take - Nov 20th

Blue Valley RB William Evans runs against Olathe North. (by Nick Smith)
By: Matt Gilmore, Kpreps Editor
Nov 20, 2015

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On this Friday Playoff edition of the Subway Fresh Take, we’ll recap sub-state semifinal playoff action from the 11-Man classes.

Remember, next time you visit Subway, please thank them for sponsoring Kansas High School Football with

Class 6A

Blue Valley 43, Olathe North 19 – The Blue Valley Tigers used a dominant second half to become the first non-Sunflower League team to advance to the 6A state title game since the state playoffs were formed in 1969. The Tigers had reached the 6A semifinals in 2008 and 2009 but fell short both times, including a 16-14 loss to Olathe North on a late field goal in 2009. Olathe North also defeated the Tigers in last year’s state quarterfinals. On Friday, Olathe North took a 19-14 lead early in the third quarter on a beautiful one-handed touchdown catch by Isaiah Simmons.  But Blue Valley responded with this touchdown pass from Colton McCumber to Taylor DeBey to take a 20-19 lead. Shortly after a fumble by the Eagles on the ensuing kickoff, William Evans rushed 12 yards for a score to up the Blue Valley lead to 27-19. McCumber then provided the separation with an incredible 30-yard touchdown run to push the lead to 34-19. The Tigers then sacked Olathe North quarterback Matt Wright in the end zone for a safety and put the game away as Evans went untouched up the middle for a 56-yard touchdown. Evans finished with 189 yards on the ground, while McCumber passed for 179 yards.

Derby 35, Lawrence Free State 14 – Top-ranked Derby used a big night from senior quarterback Brady Rust to knock out Lawrence Free State and advance to the state title game for the second time in three years. Rust compiled more than 350 yards of total offense as the Panthers won 35-14. Rust hit Kaleb Kelley on a short touchdown pass early in the second quarter for the game’s first points.  Free State tied the game on a 45-yard pick-6 by Zack Sanders mid-way through the second quarter. But Derby would add two touchdowns late in the first half on a Kristian Breedlove 17-yard run and a Rust 3-yard run to lead 21-7 at the break. Rust added another short touchdown run in the third quarter, and still another late in the game to cap the 35-14 win. Rust finished with 135 rushing yards and three scores on 35 carries, and passed for 219 yards and a touchdown. Bryce Torneden led the Firebirds with 94 yards and a touchdown on the ground.

Class 5A

Mill Valley 45, St. Thomas Aquinas 28 – Mill Valley advanced to the program’s first football state title game with a 45-28 victory over St. Thomas Aquinas. Logan Koch passed for 301 yards and four touchdowns as the Jaguars kept putting the pressure on Aquinas.  The Saints showed signs of life in the second half, but Christian Jegen sealed the game by intercepting Aquinas quarterback Karter Odermann in the end zone with four minutes left. Jegen put up another great game. The senior rushed for 116 yards and a touchdown, and caught seven passes for 171 yards and two scores. Odermann passed for 261 yards for Aquinas, while James Cosentino rushed for 129 yards and two touchdown and added 86 yards receiving and another score.

Bishop Carroll 34, Goddard-Eisenhower 7 – Defending champion Bishop Carroll advanced back to the 5A title game with a 34-7 win over Goddard-Eisenhower. The Golden Eagles scored 17 points in the second quarter to build a 24-0 halftime lead. Senior back Adam Theis rushed for 138 yards and two touchdowns, caught a touchdown pass from quarterback Jake Allen, and threw a touchdown pass to Colton Woodard. The Carroll defense held Eisenhower to 182 yards of total offense.

Class 4A, Division I

Bishop Miege 52, Eudora 20 – Eudora took an early 7-0 lead after an eight-minute, 15-play drive resulted in a 9-yard touchdown run by standout senior Grant Elston, but powerful Miege scored the next 52 points in a 52-20 victory. The defending champion Stags returned a block punt for a touchdown as part of a 24-point second quarter to lead 31-7 at halftime. Miege added a pair of touchdowns in the first minute of the third quarter as quarterback Carter Putz hit Danny Murphy on a 52-yard touchdown and Reese Alena returned a Eudora fumble 25 yards for a score. Putz passed for 219 yards and touchdown, while Dawson Downing rushed for 103 yards and three touchdowns on only eight attempts.  Miege used a quick-strike offense all game with the Stags longest scoring drive lasting just 1:35.

Andover Central 28, Topeka Hayden 2 – Andover Central dominated Topeka Hayden on Friday night to advance to the school’s first-ever state football title game with a 28-2 victory. The Jaguars built a 14-0 lead in a first half they dominated by holding Hayden to less than 30 yards of total offense. Peyton Huslig tossed a short touchdown pass to Darraja Parnell and added a short touchdown run for Central’s two first half scores. The second half was more of the same as Huslig hit Isaac Anthemides on a 27-yard strike in the third quarter. Jordan Birch then broke an 82-yard touchdown run to put the game away.  Hayden’s points came on a safety when the Jaguars stepped on the end line trying to punt out of their end zone. Andover Central’s defense held Hayden to 155 yards of total offense and only 105 rushing. Hayden rushed for 419 yards in a 38-29 win at Andover Central in Week 7. Birch led the Jaguars with 188 rushing yards on 28 carries. Huslig completed 11 of 17 passes for 162 yards and two scores, while Parnell caught five for 81 yards.  

Class 4A, Division II

Holton 23, Columbus 22 – This game played out nearly identical to last season’s quarterfinal when Columbus scored late to beat Holton 22-21.  This time it was Holton scoring on a Mason Barta 1-yard run and adding a Spencer Baum two-point conversion with 31 seconds left to overtake top-ranked Columbus, 23-22. The Titans got the ball at their own 45-yard line after the touchdown, but came up empty on four incomplete pass attempts. Columbus scored after halftime on a Jace McDown 12-yard run and JaVohn Morrill two-point play to lead 15-7. Columbus would answer with a long touchdown run from Justin Rieschick to tie the game.  Almost immediately, the Titans were back in the end zone on a 40-yarder by McDown who finished with 163 yards on the night, and 2,667 on the season. The Titans recovered a Spencer Baum fumble with just over three minutes remaining, but couldn’t pick up a first down. Holton got the ball back and Baum broke off a 30-yard run and was aided by a 15-yard horse-collar penalty setting up Holton’s final score. In all, the Wildcats drove inside the Columbus 20-yard line four other times without scoring.

Holcomb 26, Andale 13 – Holcomb advanced to the school’s first-ever state football championship game with a 26-13 win over defending 4A-II champion Andale. The Longhorns built a 14-0 halftime lead on a pair of touchdown passes from Trey Teeter to Braden Showalter and Christian Merz. Andale got on the board in the third quarter when Tristan Dagenais scored on a short run to pull within 14-7.  The Indians were driving again early in the fourth quarter when Alex Ortega intercepted Andale quarterback Taylor Richter giving Holcomb the ball back. The Longhorns wasted little time as Teeter connected with Conner VanCleave on a 47-yard touchdown to extend the lead to 20-7. Dillon Williams later added a 9-yard touchdown run mid-way through the fourth quarter to extend the lead to 26-7. Teeter passed for 131 yards and three scores, while Williams led the Longhorns with 77 yards on the ground. Andale was led by Zach Meyer’s 130 yards rushing.

Class 3A

Rossville 49, Wellsville 0 – Tucker Horak set the tone early with a 70-yard touchdown run on the game’s second play and Rossville cruised back to the 3A state title game with a 49-0 blowout of Wellsville. The Bulldawgs scored on their first seven possessions of the game, leading 35-0 at halftime and initiating the running clock after scoring twice after the break. Horak rushed 18 times for 263 yards and four touchdowns, and was a perfect 10 for 10 passing for 147 yards and three scores. He became the first player in state history to rush and pass for more than 2,000 yards in a single season.  

Wichita Collegiate 21, Halstead 0 – Collegiate advanced to the 3A title game by shutting out Halstead 21-0 behind a stellar defensive performance. The Spartans defense held Halstead’s physical rushing attack to just 45 yards on the night. The Dragons entered Friday averaging 334 rushing yards per game. Nathan Burgoyne led the Collegiate offense with 126 yards rushing and scored a pair of touchdowns in the first half. Quarterback Austin Waddell scored on a short run in the fourth quarter to give the Spartans the three-score lead. Halstead’s rushing duo of Eli McKee and Blake Beckett was held to 6 combined rushing yards on 26 attempts.

Class 2-1A

Troy 30, Olpe 21 – After falling behind defending-champion Olpe 13-0 early, Troy scored 30 points in the second quarter and held off the Eagles, 30-13.  With the win, the Trojans advance to the first-ever state football title game in school history. Andrew Burenheide scored twice early on to give Olpe an early two-score lead. The Trojans got on the board with an Alex Martinez touchdown run to pull within 13-8 after the two-point conversion. Shortly after, Cuttar Huss broke a 15-yard run to put the Trojans up 14-13, and Reid Greaser’s 1-yard run extended the lead to 22-13. On the final play of the first half, Huss intercepted an Olpe pass and returned it 70 yards for a touchdown. Kortin Blevins’ two-point conversion run gave the Trojans a 30-13 lead at the break. Olpe pulled to within 30-21 on a fourth-quarter touchdown run by Ryker Schmidt, but the Trojans were able to grind time off the clock and hold on from there on out. Huss led Troy with 82 yards rushing on five carries, while Greaser added 80 yards on the ground. Olpe was led by Dylan Redeker’s 115 yards rushing, while Schmidt passed for 176 yards.

Phillipsburg 40, Smith Center 6 – Phillipsburg advanced to the program’s first state football championship game with a 40-6 victory at Smith Center. The Panthers lead was just 8-6 at halftime, but Phillipsburg’s Kirk Coomes scored to open the third quarter and extend the lead to 16-6. Mark Coomes broke a 53-yard touchdown run, his second of the game, early in the fourth quarter to extend the lead to 24-6. Kirk Coomes added two more scores in the fourth quarter to cap the scoring. Phillipsburg rushed for 290 yards in the game led by Mark Coomes’ 134 yards. The Panthers won at Smith Center for the second time this season. Phillipsburg beat the Redmen 14-7 in the final week of the regular season.

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