Feast or famine for county football
Lopsided scores dominated the weekend in high school football.
Three county teams won big, one lost big, and the fifth fell just a bit short in the only game decided by fewer than 10 points.
Marion won by 51 over Belle Plaine, Peabody-Burns blanked Southern Coffee County with 46 points, and Goessel was a 32-point winner over Solomon.
Hillsboro was on the wrong end of a 32-point loss to Halstead, and Centre lost the only competitive game, falling by 9 to Natoma.
The Warriors dominated Friday’snon-conference road game against winless Belle Plaine, 60-9.
It didn’t look promising for Belle Plaine going into the second half with Marion already leading 54-3.
Warriors Jameson Looper, Trevor Schafers, Jack Lanning, Ian Ingels, Caleb Darrow, Nathan Hoffner, and Lane Smith all scored touchdowns.
On defense, Quade Williams, Chance Shults, Trevor Schafers, James Looper, and Jonathan Frese led the team with tackles.
“I was proud of how the guys came out prepared and ready to go Friday night,” coach Shaun Craft said. “They jumped on them early and stayed on them.”
Friday’s game was particularly satisfying for one player.
“One of the best moments was probably seeing senior Nathan Hoffner finally getting his first varsity touchdown after battling injuries through his whole high school career,” Craft said.
Marion(3-2) will face off at home Friday against undefeated Council Grove (5-0).
Peabody-Burns shut out Southern Coffey County 46-0 in a conference game at home Friday.
On offense, Peabody-Burns was led by Colton Gossen, who had three rushing touchdowns; Jefferson Glover, who had two rushing touchdowns and one receiving touchdown; and Kael Huchison, with one receiving touchdown.
“It was a great team effort on the defensive side of the ball, which set up our offense with short fields and chances to score early and often,” coach Kody Tegtmeier said.
Gossen led on defense, as well, with 10 total tackles, three of them for a loss.
“The boys have responded very well, putting up 99 points and limiting their opponents to just 6 points in the last two games,” Tegtmeier said. “We must continue to improve individually and as a team if we want to get where we want to as a program.”
Peabody-Burns (3-2) will face Altoona-Midway (2-3) on the road Friday.
Goessel struck early in Friday’s 54-22 district victory over Solomon.
On the second play from scrimmage, Jake Wiens carried the ball 49 yards for the first score of the game.
The Bluebirds forced Solomon to turn the ball over on fourth down, and Goessel marched in for another score by Wiens from 3 yards out.
The Gorillas answered that score, but Noah Schrag released a 35-yard pass as he got clobbered, and the ball settled into the hands of wide open Caleb Burkholder for the third Bluebird touchdown in the first quarter. Adam Wonser then snuffed a Gorilla possession with a tackle for loss, giving Goessel a 22-6 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Both teams lost fumbles in the second quarter, but Wiens went down the left sideline, stepping out of tackles and sailed 72 yards for a score.
Noah Schrag intercepted a long pass at his own 10, and Wiens sprinted through the middle of the field behind the blocking of Luke Stucky, Royser Duran, and Eli Boden for a 64-yard score.Solomon was able to score one more time in the first half, and neither team scored in the third quarter.
In the fourth, Solomon scored on a two-yard run.Behind the blocking of Klay Willis and Eli Boden, Wiens scored from 13 yards.The Bluebird defense forced Solomon to turn over the ball on downs, and Wiens again found the end-zone from 12 yards, following a solid block by Burkholder.
Burkholder, Boden and Grant Bryant led the defense in tackles.Goessel averaged11.2yards per play.
Goessel (3-2) will next travel to Pretty Prairie for another district battle.
Hillsboro lost Friday’s nonconference homecoming game to Halstead, 55-21.
“We just have to get back to work on Monday,” coach Demetrius Cox said. “We are not playing good football at this time.”
Trojans struggled to keep possession on offense night and struggled to make key stops on defense.
“We are having too many mistakes and mental break downs, which are making things extremely difficult for us to overcome,” Cox said, “I believe we have a good team that just hasn’t yet put a full game together.”
Hillsboro (1-4) will face off against the undefeated Southeast of Saline (5-0) on the road this Friday.
“I expect us to compete at a higher level than we did against Halstead,” Cox said.“I would love to see us put a full game together.”
Despite outrushing the Tigers 188 to 164 and garnering 103 yards versus just 43 in the air, the Cougars lost Friday’s non-conference home game against Natoma, 37-28.
Four interceptions returned for 69 yards proved the difference for the Tigers, who were intercepted only once for 2 yards.
A scoreless second quarter left Centre down 24-8 at the half, and the Cougars were able to make up only 8 points on the Tigers in the second half.
Highlights for Centre included 53- and 63-yard touchdowns run by Santiago Knepp
Centre (2-3) will be at home again Friday against winless non-district opponent Chetopa (0-5).
Staff writers Delbert Peters and Eric Meyer contributed to this story.