By Matt Browning
It all seemed too good for the McPherson football team in their state semifinal matchup against Ark City.
Leading 21-14 at halftime, the Bullpups were in prime position to make the state championship game and win the school’s first title.
McPherson pushed its lead to 27-14 early in the third quarter before Ark City reeled off two straight touchdowns to defeat the Bullpups 28-27.
McPherson had the ball twice in the fourth quarter to take the lead, but turnovers ended both drives.
Southeast of Saline’s defense had allowed only seven points per game during the Trojans’ 9-0 start.
But against Wichita Collegiate in the quarterfinals, the Trojans were unable to control the Spartans versatile offense.
Collegiate defeated Southeast of Saline 27-22. The quarterfinal appearance was the furthest the Trojans had advanced in the playoffs in a decade.
Southeast of Saline briefly led 8-7 in the first half, but Collegiate scored back-to-back touchdowns to push its lead safely to 21-7.
Not that losing is ever acceptable, but the Beloit football team entered the playoffs 2-6 before losing to Hoisington 25-0 in the 2A semifinals. Advancing that far was not even supposed to happen.
The Trojans upset Thomas More Prep, Phillipsburg and Haven on their way to the semifinals.
Beloit simply could not muster any offense against Hoisington, only managing 147 yards. Hoisington’s offense wasn’t exactly clicking, but its defense made plays when it needed to.
Hoisington scored 12 points in the third quarter to put a two-score game at halftime out of reach.
Defense had never been a problem for Inman this season as the Teutons had allowed just seven points or less six times this season.
But the question for Inman was could it score enough points against an Oakley team that had shut out Smith Center the week before.
The Teutons managed to convert just one first down and were minus-three in the turnover margin in their 9-0 loss. They finished the season 9-2.