Derby stuns top-seeded Washburn Rural, returns to 6A title game

Published: Nov. 17, 2023 at 10:50 PM CST
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TOPEKA, Kan. (KWCH) - For the second straight week, Derby stunned a higher seed on the road with a walk-off field goal to turn a narrow deficit into an electrifying win. Friday night in Topeka, Grady Jesseph kicked a walk-off field goal from 25 yards out to send Derby to the Class 6A state championship with a 29-28 victory over previously undefeated Washburn Rural.

Derby trailed by 15 points in the fourth quarter before Colton Ruedy’s second and third touchdown receptions. But a failed two-point conversion made it a 28-26 game.

Derby then got a stop on fourth-and-goal with 4:21 to play and drove the length of the field before Jesseph missed a short field goal. But a three-and-out gave Derby the ball back for Jesseph’s walk-off winner.

Derby will face Gardner-Edgerton at 1 p.m. November 25 in Emporia for the state championship. Derby is looking to win its seventh state title in the last 11 years.