Kpreps Helmet Stickers - Week 3

Artwork by Joe Wachter,
Sep 17, 2017

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Back to Kpreps this fall, our contributors will hand out helmet stickers to a team or individual that delivered the most important performance of the week in their opinion. Check back each Sunday to see that week’s helmet stickers, and follow @Kpreps on Twitter and Facebook to watch as the Kpreps helmet fills up with stickers as the season goes on.

Helmet sticker:  Altoona-Midway & Southern Cloud (Matt Gilmore -- Kpreps)

I’ll pass out a couple of helmet stickers this week as the two teams that had the longest current losing streaks in 8-Man, Division II both picked up wins on Friday night.

Congratulations to Head Coach Joe Arell and the Altoona-Midway Jets for snapping a 28-game streak with a 44-26 win over Chetopa.

The Jets led 28-26 entering the fourth quarter and a 60-yard touchdown run by Jimmy Willard helped extend the lead to 36-26. Altoona-Midway would add another fourth quarter score to win by 18. Willard led the way with more than 140 rushing yards and two scores.

Altoona-Midway’s last win during a full season came on October 27, 2011 when the Jets beat Tyro Christian, 45-24. The Jets then cancelled the 2012 season due to low numbers, but picked up games against Tyro Christian and Elk Valley late in that season. The Jets defeated Elk Valley 56-24 on October 19, 2012.

Altoona-Midway had gone winless the past three seasons (2014-16), and did not field a team in 2013.

Meanwhile, Southern Cloud ended its 22-game losing streak on Friday with a 92-48 win over Wilson. The Warriors led Wilson 42-40 at halftime before outscoring the Dragons 50-8 in the second half.

Senior Lane Martin paced the Warrior offense with 187 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 17 carries, while junior Carson Bellows added 101 yards on the ground and four scores.

Freshman quarterback Morgan Coleman threw two touchdown passes to senior Joe Cool.

Before ending their streak, Coach Rick Hatfield’s Warriors also extended it this week when they lost a varsity game to Axtell, 70-20, on Monday night.

Southern Cloud’s last win came in a 68-50 shootout over Blue Valley Randolph on October 17, 2014.

Helmet sticker: Lakin Broncs (John Baetz – Kansas Pregame)

The Lakin Broncs improved to 3-0 to start a season for the first time since 2007 with a 34-18 win over a solid Elkhart squad Friday night. The Broncs are continuing the steady rebuilding project under third-year coach Chris Bamberger who led the team to a 5-5 season last fall after a 2-7 finish in 2015.

Bamberger is no stranger to football success. The former K-State linebacker and Jetmore native led the Ness City Eagles to a 40-14 record in five seasons as head coach from 2010-14, including an unbeaten 8-Man I title in 2012.

Now he appears to have the Broncs headed in the right direction behind talented athletes like playmaking senior Dawsen Shalberg, who returned the opening kickoff 91 yards for a score Friday night. Shalberg added nine carries for 90 yards rushing and two more scores and caught one pass for six more yards.

The Broncs should be heavy favorites the next two weeks against Sublette and Stanton County before back-to-back tests against Holcomb and Cimarron, with the latter contest likely determining the 3A District 16 champion.

Helmet sticker:  St. Mary’s Colgan (Chet Kuplen -- Sports in Kansas)

Shawn Seematter picked up his first home victory at St. Mary's Colgan on Thursday night at Hutchinson Field against the Panthers’ long-time rival Frontenac, 20-0. It marked the first time in 37 years that Colgan got a win from another head coach at home, after Kansas coaching legend Chuck Smith, who had 343 wins at SMC, announced his retirement last December.

Colgan has used a run-first mentality to control the clock and have kept opponents out of the end zone as a recipe for success in their 2-1 start with two victories over two 4A-II opponents (Baxter Springs, Frontenac). The Panthers only loss came to Galena 16-0 in week one when they lost their all-state linebacker and quarterback Bryce Hutchins on the sixth play of the game.

Junior Cade Simmons has stepped up nicely to fill the role of quarterback for the Panthers, as he was a part of all three scores in the 20-0 win over Frontenac. When we talked about clock conrol and limiting opponents plays we meant it. The Panthers ran 60 offensive plays on Thursday to Frontenac’s 32 plays. The Panthers are getting it done from all grades in their school this season as the offense starts six seniors, four juniors and a freshman, while the defense starts one sophomore, five juniors and five seniors.

Seematter, who was known for his stout defenses as the defensive coordinator at Halstead, has transitioned nicely with his style into the CNC league in his first three games. Another interesting note pointed out by Colgan play-by-play voice, Trent Kling of ESPN 100.7, is the Panther opponents have started 24 drives inside their own 50 yard line this season and have only been able to score on two of those drives. 

Helmet sticker: Wellington (Conor Nicholl – Kpreps)

Wellington lost the final two games of the 2015 season and then all nine games in 2016 in the first year under coach Zane Aguilar, formerly a longtime assistant. That included opening defeats to Clearwater (41-13), El Dorado (34-18) and Rose Hill (7-6). Wellington, which lost a pair of games by one point, was the only 4A-I team without a victory last fall.

In 2017, Wellington ended its 11-game losing streak with three consecutive wins. The Crusaders started with a 34-6 victory at Clearwater, defeated El Dorado, 21-0, and then held off Rose Hill, 27-13, on Friday to stay perfect.

Last season, 23 teams in Kansas went 0-8/0-9, according to Prep Power Index. Wellington is the only one of those which hasn’t lost this fall. The Crusaders have tallied 82 points after just 84 all of 2016.

On Friday, Rose Hill led 6-0 in the final seconds of the first half. Wellington’s Michael Ledbetter picked off a pass and returned it 60 yards for a score. Interceptions have been key for Wellington thus far; the Crusaders had eight in the first two weeks.

Rose Hill led 13-6 early in the second half before Wellington finished the game with 21 straight points. Joe Ybarra delivered 26 carries for 119 yards, the bulk coming in the second half. He rushed for two scores and Cade Phelps threw a 73-yard touchdown pass. In Week 2, Ybarra finished with 18 carries for 152 yards and three TDs.

Wellington is at Andale this week and follows with Wichita Collegiate and Scott City. The Crusaders have not had a winning season since a 5-4 mark in ’14 and haven’t won more than five in a year since 6-4 in ’09.


Helmet Stickers (2017 Season)

Week 1 – Burrton, Pittsburg, St. James Academy, Thomas More Prep, Wetmore

Week 2 – Ellsworth, Goddard, Hays, Maize South

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