Football powers LaCrosse and Otis-Bison looked better in week two than they did in week one, and No. 4 Ness City further established itself as a football power with a big win.
A week after slipping by Ellis, the Leopards played host to 3A Hoisington, an area power year-in, year-out. LaCrosse needed a quarter to pull away—leading just 8-6 after one quarter, the Leopards eventually pulled away for a 34-12 win.
LaCrosse used a balanced attack to move to 2-0, rushing for 225 yards and throwing for another 136 yards. William Storie needed just one carry, taking it 86 yards for a touchdown, to lead the ground attack. Kip Keeley added 72 yards on 13 carries. Jack Garcia completed half of his 12 pass tries for 136 yards and three touchdowns. Storie’s lone reception went for 11 yards and a score. In the fourth quarter, Tanner Yohe caught two passes, both touchdowns, of 56 and 12 yards.
Defensively, Sheldon Schmidt paced the team with 13 tackles, including a sack. Keeley and Lucas Moeder each recorded 10 tackles. Moeder also had two interceptions. LaCrosse has four pick-offs in its first two games.
Macksville has been a force in the CPL and state for several years. Last year, the Eagles ended their year with a 42-40 loss to the Mustangs. Friday, things were a little different. No. 1 Ness City lit up the scoreboard with 38 first quarter points, adding 20 more in the second quarter to earn a 58-8 halftime win.
The Eagles did most of their damage on the ground with 301 rushing yards. Dalton Gantz rolled up 131 yards and two scores on just six carries. Quarterback Koltyn Ratliff added four touchdowns and 71 yards on 11 carries. Garrett Flax finished with 69 yards and a touchdown on eight carries. Flax also had a 75-yard kick-return for a score.
Along with his four scores, Ratliff recorded a sack on the defensive side, and picked off a Mustang pass. Flax and Blake McVicker each had four tackles.
Dylan Wissman rushed for more than 200 yards…before halftime. The senior added a 72-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter, his fourth score of the night, bringing his total to 307 yards as the Cougars defeated Central Plains 40-14.
After a 22-20 win in week won, Otis-Bison again appeared to have a battle on its hands early, leading just 8-0 after one quarter on a Wissman score from a yard out. Wissman scored on another short run in the second quarter, and Justus Bartonek punched one in from a yard out to give the Cougars a 24-14 halftime lead.
Neither team could find the end zone in the third quarter. In the fourth, the senior Wissman took over. With 9:35 to play, his touchdown from two yards out all but secured the win. Just over two minutes later, he added the icing on the cake with the 72-yard burst.
A week after coming up just short against eight-man power Otis-Bison, the Tigers got their first win of the year…against a former powerhouse in Victoria. St. John outscored the Knights in every quarter but the last en route to a 40-28 win.
Spencer Nusser connected with Francisco Calleros for 22 yards to put the Tigers on the board first in the opening quarter. After a Victoria answer, Nusser pass for another score, this time to Dean Wade from 12 yards out to give St. John the lead for good. In the second quarter, Wade caught a 33-yard strike to put the Tigers up 18-8 at the break. In the second half, Ethan Long scored on runs of six and four yards to offset Victoria’s 68-yard touchdown. In the final quarter, Nusser ran in from two yards out, giving the Tigers a 40-14 lead before the Knights scored the final two touchdowns of the game.
In week one, the graduation of its four top rushers did not seem to matter to the Oiler offense, who rolled all over Stafford. Friday against perennial-power Otis-Bison was a different story. Central Plains managed just 59 rushing yards and 141 yards overall in a 40-14 loss to the Cougars.
The Oilers did stay close early. Trailing 16-0 in the second quarter, sophomore Layne Bieberle returned a kick 72 yards. After another Cougar score, Bieberle caught a 15-yard pass from Bryce Steiner to send Plains into the half trailing 24-14. That would be the final Oiler score of the night. The Cougars continued to run away with things, finishing the night with 411 rushing yards, including two more touchdowns in the final quarter. Steiner finished his night going 10-of-26 with 82 yards.
The Knights opened their home-season against up-and-coming St. John on Friday. Victoria was able to hang with the Tigers early, trailing 12-8 after one quarter, but St. John scored 28 of the game’s next 34 –points to hand the Knights their first loss 40-28.
Quarterback Sam Ottley hit Noah Dreiling for a 53-yard touchdown pass to put the Knights on the board in the first quarter. Victoria trailed 32-8 before finding the end zone again, this time on a 68-yard strike from Ottley to Dreiling. In the fourth quarter, Clayton Roth added a touchdown run, and in the final minute, Ottley threw for his third touchdown, finding Tanner Hobbs from 40 yards out. Ottley completed 6-of-15 passes in the game for 199 yards. Dreiling had half of those catches for 138 yards.