October 22, 2010
This is a pivotal week, the second week of district football. Class 6A Dodge City takes its undefeated record to Maize, which just hasn't been the same since losing in Week 3 to Derby. A loss to Dodge likely means Maize will miss the playoffs for the second time in three seasons. Tonight could also mean a step backward for Class 5A Andover High, which won nine games in each of the last two seasons in 4A. Andover hosts Kapaun, and a loss likely eliminates them from the playoffs.
Meanwhile, the recent doldrums for vaunted football programs Great Bend and Salina Central cleared last week, as Great Bend reasserted itself over Hays and Central took back bragging rights from Salina South. Great Bend and Central, which hook up tonight in Class 5A, could be headed back to the playoffs after uncharacteristically missing them a year ago.
One of Class 3A's most intriguing districts provides two more great match-ups tonight. Garden Plain survived Trinity Catholic's passing attack last week, controlling the line of scrimmage and dealing out hits in the defensive secondary. They face another passing attack tonight at Sedgwick, which pulled out a comeback against Halstead last week. Hutch Trinity looks to stay in the district race against Halstead, which gave Trinity its toughest regular season game last year, a 14-8 Trinity win. Could get interesting.
The game of the night has to be in Class 5A, McPherson at Emporia. Since losing two straight in Weeks 2 and 3, Emporia, a state quarterfinalist a year ago, has won four straight under first-year coach Dustin Delaney, highlighted by a Week 6 win over Junction City. Emporia shocked the state with a first-round playoff upset of McPherson last year, coming back from down 20 to 0. McPherson goes back to Welch Stadium tonight, this time hoping to build a lead and keep it.