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Local Sports News
Holton Rolls Rock Creek to Win District Title
By Justin Fluke
Copyright: MSC Sports
10/17/2020

There is no doubt that in big games, mistakes can be costly. Rock Creek found that out Friday with two early turnovers that helped Holton take a 20-0 lead before the Wildcats scored on their first six drives of the game in route to a 41-21 victory. Maybe Holton was going to score every time they had the ball no matter where they started on the field, but in a matchup of high powered offenses, the Mustangs two mistakes set the tone for the night and left them trying to play catch-up to control the Cats momentum. In building a 34-0 first half lead, Holton had 279 yards and 14 first downs. 

The Wildcats had five different players score a touchdown on their first five possessions and it started on the third play of the game when quarterback Kale Purcell took an option play for a 71-yard touchdown. Following an interception and 40-yard return by Reese Holaday on a ball that popped off a Mustang receiver and up in the air, Canon Karn ran in for six yards out to make it 13-0. Matt Lierz that hit Rock Creek quarterback Charlie Killingsworth two plays later and Karn recovered the fumble before Konnor Tannahill punched in a short TD run. The Mustangs were then forced to punt on their next two drives and Holton got touchdown runs from homecoming king, Addison Hundley and Jayden Fletcher to lead 34-0 with 4:22 remaining in the half. 

Holton finished with 400 yards of offense, including 395 rushing on 74 carries. Their lone second half touchdown went 15 plays and included five short third down conversions while taking more than 7:30 off the clock following a Rock Creek touchdown before and after ;halftime that had made the score 34-13. The Cats finished the night 14-16 on third downs and also converted once on fourth down to control the possession of the game. Purcell ran for a season high 133 yards on 14 carries and also intercepted a pass near the goal line late in the third period for the Wildcats 10th INT of the season. Konnor Tannahill was a workhouse with 107 yards on 25 carries at the fulback spot.  Tannahill earned Citizens State Bank and Trust Company "Player to Bank On" honors, also for his play on the defensive line which played great all night, taking away the Rock Creek run game, pressuring and knocking down passes and not allowing the Killingsworth to get loose on the ground. Hundley had 80 yards as well and Karn added 66. Dustin Chermock was part of that defensive line play that was terrific and earned the Giant Communications "Lineman of the Game" kudos.  

Rock Creek managed by far a season low 21 points and only 259 yards with three turnovers. Killingsworth ran for just 51 yards on 12 carries and was 12-29 for 173 yards passing. Brooks Whaley caught five passes for 113 yards but dropped a touchdown in the endzone, part of a frustration night when a lot of little things didn't happen for the Mustangs who fell to 4-2 on the season. 

The Wildcats improved to 6-1 and will not play next week as Jeff West has also canceled that game due to low numbers and kids in quarantine. The win not only secured the district title for Holton but also made their potential playoff run look much easier on paper as the Cats will now likely face teams with losing records in their first two playoff games.  Rock Creek meanwhile will now likely have to start the post season in two weeks hosting Perry Lecompton with the winner probably meeting Hayden in the second round. 


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Hiawatha, KS 66434
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