Olathe North (10-2) vs. Derby (12-0): 1 p.m. Saturday at Emporia State
Derby coach Brandon Clark broke down his team before the 6A championship game.
Key to the Panthers’ offense: Senior center Kevin Washington leads the offensive line, while senior running back Tre Washington and junior quarterback Lem Wash, who replaced the injured senior Grant Adler, have been stellar in the backfield. Jacob Karsak, Cavion Walker and Reid Listen are the top receivers. Adler and Wash have combined for more than 1,600 passing yards and 23 touchdowns. Washington has 1,463 rushing yards and 22 touchdowns, while Wash has 1,034rushing yards with 23 touchdowns. Walker has a team-high 525 receiving yards for 10 touchdowns.
Key to the Panthers’ defense: “Tyler Dorsey has been our anchor on the defense,” Clark said. The linebackers — Jack Hileman, Luke Stewart and Coleson Syring — have been strong. In the secondary, Tanner Knox, Terry Ginyard and Brecken Kooser have been standing out. Hileman has a team-leading 79 tackles, while Dorsey has 75, seven sacks and 25 tackles for loss with five forced fumbles. Stewart has 71 tackles, seven sacks and four forced fumbles. Seth Smith has 67 tackles, seven sacks and 15 tackles for loss.
Key to winning the 6A title: “We need to not beat ourselves. Not let the game become too big. We’ve got to treat it like any other football game. If we want to win, it will be Monday-Friday in our preparation.”
How thrilled are you to get this chance to play for a title: “It’s the best feeling ever. Our kids have been so locked in this year. Our seniors have been waiting for this moment since they started playing football together in the third grade. I’m so happy that we can enjoy this next Saturday with the whole town of Derby in Emporia.”
Etc.: “This team has been unbelievable on the field and off the field. I’m so proud of them as a coach. Off the field they have put in so many service hours to many different service projects and organizations. The team has truly won off the field.”
Mill Valley (9-3) vs. Wichita Northwest (12-0): 1 p.m. Saturday at Pittsburg State
Northwest coach Steve Martin broke down his team before the 5A championship game.
Key to the Grizzlies’ offense: Senior quarterback Reagan Jones leads the offense and is the coach on the field. “I have never had a player so immersed in a playbook that knows every responsibility on the field,” Martin said. Julius Bolden and Jones each have more than 1,500 rushing yards, while Jamar Martin is at 1,000. Zion Jones has 772 receiving yards and is a key target for Reagan Jones, who has more than 1,500 passing yards. The offensive line is led by center Jacob Amy and guard Javon Wheeler.
Key to the Grizzlies’ defense: “The group that is very overlooked is our defensive line. Nathan Carter, Nathan Hale, Zach Daher and Domingo Vega-Thomas have done a great job of keeping the linebackers clean.” Jack Wiens leads the team in tackles with 93, and Malcolm Bell and Todric McGee lead the secondary. McGee has 81 tackles and four interceptions.
Key to winning the 5A title: “We need to do what we do! We need to establish the run game early and rely on our play-action attack to get big plays when we catch the defense sleeping. Defensively we need to stop the run. Playing in the game last year I feel will be an advantage to our kids because now they know what the environment is like.”
How thrilled are you to get this chance to play for a title: “We are very excited. Any time your team goal is to shoot for the stars and win a state title, those are big goals. To chase down those goals and trust the process is an amazing feat. We are excited to represent Northwest High School, the Wichita community and the west side of the state.”
Bishop Miege (10-2) vs. Andover Central (11-1): 1 p.m. Saturday at Hummer Sports Complex, Topeka
Andover Central coach Derek Tuttle broke down his team before the 4A championship game.
Key to the Jaguars’ offense: The Andover Central offense has been led by Xavier Bell, Shomari Parnell, Matt Macy, Jacob Rees, Ty Herrmann. The Jaguars are averaging 29.8 points (358 total).
Key to the Jaguars’ defense: The Jaguars’ defense is led by Trey DeGarmo, Jake Taylor, Kaden Wilson, Bridger Warrington, Jacob Rees and Ty Herrmann. Andover Central has allowed 129 points (10.8 per game). The Jaguars shut out McPherson in the 4A semifinals.
Key to winning the 4A title: According to Tuttle, the Jaguars need to “execute our schemes fast and aggressively. Trust our schemes and each other. Have fun!”
How thrilled are you to get this chance to play for a title: “Extremely grateful for all the hard work by our players, coaches to get to this point. Very excited for the Andover Central community and program.”
Etc.: Andover Central won the 5A basketball title with some of the same key players — Xavier Bell, Ty Herrmann, Shomari Parnell, Jake Taylor and Trey DeGarmo.
Perry-Lecompton (9-3) vs. Andale (12-0): 1 p.m. Saturday at Hutchinson Community College
Andale coach Dylan Schmidt broke down his team before the championship game.
Key to the Indians’ offense: Coach Dylan Schmidt pointed to the offensive line as a key to Andale’s offensive prowess: Carson Fair, Cayden Winter, Ben May, Connor Hennes and Creighton Camp. Andale is averaging 50.9 points, a school record.
Key to the Indians’ defense: Andale has 46 takeaways. Eli Rowland has seven interceptions, while Scotti Easter has 86 tackles. The Indians are allowing 7.3 points a game, even less has been allowed by the varsity because the Indians have had a running clock in eight games.
Key to winning the 3A title: Winning the turnover battle and on the line
How thrilled are you to get this chance to play for a title?
“It’s the goal every year for every coach and player, so it feels great when your hard work is validated.”
Etc.: The Indians’ offensive line averages 199 pounds. “We have done it with tough, undersized kids that believe in what we are doing.”
Key stats: Eli Rowland, 1,137 rushing yards, 20 touchdowns. Mac Brand 716 rushing yards, nine touchdowns. Easton Hunter 923 passing yards, 10 touchdowns. Scotti Easter, 413 receiving yards. . Cole Landers, 306 receiving yards. Dawson Chavez 72 tackles. Jake Engelbrecht 68 tackles.