8 Man-II District Preview
Michael Hlavaty leads the third-ranked Cougars of Otis-Bison. (Photo by Everett Royer)
By Kpreps.com & Kansas Pregame Magazine
Posted: October 1, 2010 - 12:52 AM
8-Man Division II
When you’re talking about 8-Man Division II football, it’s difficult to look past District I East, which includes the classification’s top two ranked teams in the Baileyville B&B Falcons (4-0 overall, 2-0 district) and the Hanover Wildcats (4-0, 1-0). Baileyville B&B played in last year’s 8-Man Division I state championship game and Hanover is the defending 8-Man Division II state champion.
This season, the two teams have dominated their competition thus far. The Falcons have beaten their opponents by a combined score of 259-32, and Hanover has won its four games by a combined score of 190-26. The two teams will butt heads Oct. 8 at Baileyville B&B.
Note: Since the expanded districts have caused fewer players from the smaller classifications to earn all-league honors, Kpreps.com and Kansas Pregame are planning to team up to honor players with the creation of all-district teams for Class 2-1A, 8-Man Division I and 8-Man Division II.
- Baileyville B&B (4-0) – The #1 Falcons are rolling after dropping to Division II, but Axtell and Hanover in consecutive weeks will provide quality tests. Eric Huerter and Dylan Buessing led a Falcon offense that hasn’t scored less than 54 points in a game this season.
- Hanover (4-0) – The defending champs are giving up less than a touchdown per game and now hold the state’s longest winning streak at 15 games. Austin Stenifort, Ethan Diederich and Connor Hynek lead a potent offense scoring 48 points per game.
- Axtell (3-1) – The Eagles have a signature win with a 40-6 blow out of Clifton-Clyde, but blew a big lead and needed a late score to escape Elwood 48-42 last week.
- Elwood (3-1) – The Panthers rallied from 22 points down in the fourth quarter to actually take the lead on Axtell before giving up a late score. Their goal now has to remain competitive in this loaded district.
- Frankfort (1-3) – The tradition rich Wildcats have fallen on difficult times having already been shutout twice this season while giving up 35 points per game.
- Kickapoo Nation (0-2) – The Warriors are 0-2 in their first season to take part in district competition. Stephen Caude rushed for 114 yards and two scores in the loss to Frankfort.
- Bern (0-4) – The Indians are averaging just six points per game and giving up 54 on the year. Bern will find tough going in this district.
Key Games: (Wk 6) #2 Hanover at #1 Baileyville B&B
- Hope (3-1) – The Lions lone loss came 28-22 to unbeaten Centre. Hope features a real scoring threat in senior back Lucas Bird.
- Quivira Heights (3-1) – The arm of Gunner Phelan and legs of Nick Schepmann and Jordan Trevino should make the T-birds a tough out, but the loss to St. John is puzzling.
- Linn (2-2) – The Bulldogs have scored 41 points per game in their wins, but been shutout twice, albeit against Hanover and Clifton-Clyde.
- Wilson (2-2) – The Dragons two losses have come by a total of 14 points. A 10 point road setback at Central Burden suggests that Wilson will be competitive in this district.
- Tescott (1-3) – The Trojans are allowing 47 points per game thus far including a season high 72 in a road loss to Udall in week three.
- Beloit St. Johns-Tipton (0-4) – The Blujays took a big hit to graduation last spring with the loss of Josh Wessling. With just one returning starter back this season, the Blujays struggled in being shutout in each of their first three games.
Key Games: (Wk 7) Quivira Heights at Hope
Winner: Quivira Heights
- Centre-Lost Springs (4-0) – Centre’s senior QB Tanner Brunner is a threat to run, pass, and score in the return games for a Cougar team averaging 45 points per game. Centre appears to have passes their major test win a 28-22 win over Hope.
- Waverly (2-2) – Defense will be the key for the Bulldogs in making a playoff run. Waverly has given up nearly 38 points per game this season including a 68-22 loss to Burlingame.
- Flinthills (1-3) – The Mustangs lone win came 40-28 against one-win West Elk in week three.
- Altoona-Midway (0-4) – Jim Leonard’s Jets have scored over 30 in each of their last two games, but have come up short in both games.
- Hartford (0-4) – The Jaguars’ three losses have come against opponents that are a combined 13-3.
- Elk Valley – season cancelled
Key Games: (Wk 7) Centre at Waverly
Winner: Centre-Lost Springs
- Caldwell (4-0) – Braden Lebeda will look to lead Caldwell on another deep playoff run by spreading the ball around to Alex Davis and Dalton Whaley.
- South Haven (4-0) – The Cardinals are unbeaten thanks to an offense averaging 46 points per game. South Haven gets South Barber and Caldwell in back-to-back weeks in key district match-ups.
- South Barber (3-1) – Christian Johnston will look for big targets Luke Yearout (6-5, 195) and Dillon Molz to pace the Chieftain offense. Running backs Matthew McMurray and Blake Waggenbuch will contribute to a balanced running game.
- Norwich (2-2) – The Eagles have been shutout in both of their losses; 50-0 to #1 Pretty Prairie and 48-0 to unbeaten South Haven.
- Argonia (2-2) – With only 13 players out the Raiders started out 2-0, but have since only scored six points in their last two games.
- Attica (1-3) – Attica ended a 13-game losing streak by knocking off Burrton in week four for the school’s first win since late in the 2008 season.
- Burrton (0-4) –The Chargers have scored in double digits just once this season; in a 54-20 loss to Attica.
Key Games: (Wk 5) Caldwell at South Barber, (Wk 7) South Haven at South Barber, (Wk 8) Caldwell at South Haven
Runner-up: South Barber
- Otis-Bison (4-0) – The Cougars are putting up similar numbers to last season’s record-breaking team. Michael Hlavaty leads an experienced Otis-Bison team which has given up just 6 points all season.
- Chase (3-1) – The Kats should challenge for a playoff spot, but were unable to match the talent of Otis-Bison in a 54-6 loss.
- Pawnee Heights (2-2) – After being outscored 122-8 in their first two games, the Tigers have rebounded with two wins in which they scored 62 and 64 points.
- Stafford (2-2) – The Trojans have scored 45 points per game in their two wins, but are giving up 48 in their two losses.
- Bucklin (0-3) – The Red Aces are looking to snap a 17-game losing steak. Bucklin has been outscored 196-52 this season.
- Cunningham (0-3) – The Wildcats’ three losses have come to teams that are a combined 8-4 thus far. They’ll seek their first win by visiting Stafford in week five.
Key Games: Otis-Bison’s 54-6 win over Chase in week three. (Wk 6) Pawnee Heights at Chase
- Ashland (4-0) – Ben Fox and Ervin Swonger have each rushed for more than 400 yards and combined for 13 touchdowns for the Blujays. Ashland is averaging 57 points per game.
- Dighton (3-1) – Guy Fullmer has already rushed for 816 yards and 11 touchdowns while C.J. Shaffer has added 361 yards on the ground for the Hornets.
- Ingalls (3-1) – Ingalls raced out to a 3-0 start before a week four setback to Pawnee Heights. The Bulldogs have scored 47 points per game, but the defense will need to improve from the 64 points allowed to Pawnee Heights.
- Moscow (3-1) – The Wildcats are 3-1 after only a close loss to Tribune. Moscow has scored 47 points per game including 64 in a win over a 2-1A Satanta team.
- Fowler (2-2) – The Gold Bugs have dropped two straight to Moscow and Ashland. Moscow and Fowler will meet again in a Week 8 district game.
- Rolla (1-3) – The Pirates have only played one Kansas team – a 46-22 loss to Deerfield in Week 2. Rolla has surrendered 37 points per game this season.
Key Games: (Wk 5) Ashland at Dighton, (Wk 5) Ingalls at Moscow, (Wk 6) Moscow at Dighton, (Wk 9) Dighton at Ingalls
- Cheylin (4-0) – The Cougars are thriving this season behind the return of nine players with starting experience including 6-4, 175 pound quarterback Caleb Keltz.
- Tribune-Greeley Co. (3-1) – The Jackrabbits were stunned by Hoxie to open the season, but have since put up 38, 72 and 52 points in three wins. The defense hasn't been a strong suit though as the team has allowed at least 28 points in all four games.
- Grinnell-Wheatland (2-2) – Sandwiched wins over Logan and Triplains-Brewster are around big losses to Quinter and Cheylin. The Thunderhawks are young with only four players with starting experience back from 2009, all are juniors.
- Golden Plains (1-3) – Golden Plains has put up good scoring numbers against quality opponents, but the defense has been porous in three consecutive season opening losses allowing 156 points.
- Sharon Springs – Wallace Co. (1-3) – The Kevin Ayers coached Wildcats are only 1-3 this season with their lone win two weeks ago against winless Triplains-Brewster. Ayers is 39-10 in five years at Wallace County and 118-21 in 13 years as a head coach.
- Weskan (1-3) – The Coyotes halted a 20-game losing streak on September 3 when they beat Northern Valley 46-34, but have surrendered 138 points in three consecutive losses.
- Triplains-Brewster (0-4) – Triplains-Brewster has surrendered at least 46 points and scored only one touchdown in four losses this season. The Titans got on the board for the first team last week against Grinnell-Wheatland.
Key Games: (Wk 8) Tribune-Greeley Co. at Chelyin
Winner: Tribune-Greeley Co.
- Victoria (3-1) – The Knights are 43-6 over the past four seasons, and have only suffered a 36-14 loss to Macksville this season. Victoria has allowed only 12 points in the last three games and scored at least 30 in each of those wins.
- Palco (3-1) – Since a 9-8 loss to Stockton in week one the Roosters have rolled scoring at least 30 points in wins over Triplains-Brewster, Natoma and Logan. Palco is 2-0 in this district, but have tough games in week seven and eight against Victoria and Thunder Ridge.
- Thunder Ridge (2-2) – Thunder Ridge erased the memory of tough losses to Hill City and Hanover with a 52-18 win over Wakeeney-Trego in week three. The Longhorns appear to poised to be a contender in district play thanks to junior running back Joel Struckhoff who has 603 yards rushing and seven touchdowns this season.
- Northern Valley (1-3) – Chuck Fessenden is one of the most successful coaches in 8-Man football with 245 wins in nearly 35 years as the Huskies head coach, but only five of those wins have come in the last five seasons and the struggles continue as the Huskies have posted only one win thus far this season.
- Logan (0-4) – Logan has scored only 30 total points in four losses this season and the Trojan defense has allowed 182 points including at least 42 points in each of the last three losses.
- Western Plains (0-4) – The Bobcats have scored just 18 points this season and forfeited their week four game against Thunder Ridge.
- Natoma (0-4) – Natoma has improved over the last several seasons under coach Ben Labertew, but the Tigers have hit a wall finding themselves on the losing end of each of their four contests. Two of those losses were close with a 28-14 setback against talented Sylvan-Lucas Unified and a 30-22 loss to improved Palco.
Key Games: (Wk 8) Palco at Thunder Ridge, (Wk 9) Thunder Ridge at Victoria
Runner-up: Thunder Ridge