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Class 5A football championship preview: Maize vs. Mill Valley

By Blake Chadwick

Who: Mill Valley Jaguars (12-1) vs Maize Eagles (11-2)

When: 1 p.m., Saturday

Where: Pittsburg State University 


  • Mill Valley looks to win their third Class 5A state championship in a row. 
  • This is the first state championship berth for the Maize High Eagles. 

Maize Eagles

Coach Gary Guzman

Key players 

QB Avery Johnson, junior, 6-3, 170 pounds, (2,301 passing yards and 19 touchdowns/4 interceptions, 1009 rushing yards and 21 rushing touchdowns)

RB Daeshaun Carter, junior, 5-11, 193 pounds, (167 rushes, 1142 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns) 

WR Justin Stephens, junior, 6-1,193 pounds, (37 receptions, 651 and 6 touchdowns)

WR Bryce Cohoon, junior, 6’2” 175, WR (34 receptions, 726 yards and 7 touchdowns)

LG Brandon Kerr, senior, 6-1, 258  pounds,

K/P Cole Segraves, senior, 5-9, 177 pounds, 

S Cael Moses, senior, 6-0, 153 pounds, (49 solo tackles and 1 interception)

LB Connor Padgett,  junior, 6-0, 178 pounds, (63 solo tackles)

DE Dakota Shook, senior, 6-3, 195 pounds, (47 solo tackles and 6.5 sacks)

DT Caden Miranda, junior, 5-11, 233 pounds, (46 solo tackles)

What makes your team special?

“I think that Avery Johnson and his ability to make plays definitely makes our team special. We also have a team that believes in each other, plays well together and refuses to quit.”

Have any players been a surprise?

“No surprises. The players that we expected to step up for us this year, have stepped up.”

What got your team into the state championship game?

“I think the loss to Ark City woke us up, and the one point loss to Derby gave us the confidence that we needed to get through a very difficult playoff schedule and put us into the state championship game.”

What does your team need to do in order to win the state championship game?

“We need to play well in all three phases of the game, offense, defense and special teams. Win the field position and turnover battles, take advantage of scoring opportunities, and keep our defense off the field.”


Mill Valley Jaguars

Joel Applebee

Key players

QB Hayden Jay, junior, 6-1, 178 pounds, (2,171 passing yards, 25 passing touchdowns/ 5 interceptions and 9 rushing touchdowns)

WR Kendrick Jones, senior, 6-5, 198 pounds (40 receptions, 647 yards, and 6 receiving touchdowns)

TE Jared Napoli, senior, 6-1, 210 pounds, (25 receptions, 525 yards, 5 receiving touchdowns)

TE/WR Sean Allerheiligen, senior, 6-3, 208 pounds (24 receptions, 324 yards, 5 receiving touchdowns)

RB Reice Kennedy, senior, 5-9, 187 pounds (181 rushes, 1189 rushing yards and 14 rushing touchdowns)

OL Ryan Fulcher, senior, 6-4, 263 pounds

WR Aidan Jacobs, senior, 6-3, 198 pounds (17 receptions, 424 yards and 6 receiving touchdowns)

DL Aidan Shaffer, senior, 6-2, 263 pounds (5.5 sacks and 32 total tackles)

DL Cody Moore, senior, 6-0, 207 pounds (7 sacks and 53 total tackles)

DL Grant Rutkowski, junior, 6-1, 236 pounds (5.5 sacks and 48 tackles) 

DL Truman Griffith, sophomore, 6-3,222 pounds (9.5 sacks and 41 total tackles)

DB Mikey Bergeron, junior, 6-2, 178 pounds (92 total tackles)

DB Holden Zigmant, junior, 5-8, 172 pounds (69 total tackles)

LB Jason Smith, senior, 6-0, 178 pounds (58 tackles and 2 interceptions)


What makes your team special?

“Our senior leadership has been tremendous this year. We have relied on them to set the pace all year.”

Who have been key players for you this season?

“Offensively, we feel like we have a very balanced attack. Our offensive line has done a tremendous job this year in both the run and pass game. Defensively, we have relied on our front four to lead us.”

What got your team into the state championship game?

“Again, it goes back to our senior leadership. They truly love the game of football and all that goes into preparation and practice.”

What does your team need to do in order to win the state championship game?

“We will have to play a clean game.  Minimize mistakes, penalties and turnovers.”

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