Saturday, 22 June 2024
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Holton Hurdles Frontenac to Return to Sub State
By Justin Fluke
Copyright: MSC Sports

For a fourth straight year, the Holton football team has advanced to the state semifinals. The Wildcats never trailed Friday night at home in beating Frontenac 35-22 for their fourth straight win. Holton ran for 468 yards on 58 carries and like the previous week win at undefeated Wellsville, the Cats had zero turnovers and converted all three times on fourth down plays. 

Senior quarterback Eli Hallauer had ran for just over 200 yards in the first 10 games of the season and got loose twice on option runs for touchdowns of 43 and 38 yards to give Holton the 14-0 lead. Hallauer had over 100 yards rushing in the first half and ended the game with 120 on just 10 carries. Abbott Hundley took over in the second half with a pair of rushing scores from 25 and 67 yards out before Holton sealed the win with their only pass play of the night on fourth down and six when Kayden Gale (sophomore) caught his first varsity pass on a halfback toss from Bodie Dillon for a 33-yard touchdown that gave Holton their biggest lead at 35-15. 

Frontenac put up a fight and never went away; however, the Raiders had two major turnovers and also went 0-2 on fourth down tries. Trailing 7-0, the second Frontenac drive marched into the Holton red zone with a screen pass that would have set up first and goal, but the ball was fumbled at the end of the play on a big hit by Dillon and recovered by Cael Frazier. Down 14-0 late first half, the Raiders got a seven-yard TD pass from Kal Terlip to Jayden Houghton to make it 14-7 at the break.  

Frontenac got the ball to begin the third period but went three-and-out for the third time in the game. They pinned Holton at their own four-yard-line and forced a quick punt; however, in maybe the biggest turning point of the night, Frontenac got a piece of the punt before Jomar Pero tried to pick up the ball and muffed the return with Jackson Bear recovering the live fumble for the Wildcats. Five plays later, Holton scored to make it 22-7 after Dillon added his second two-point-conversion run of the game. 

Terlip had a rushing touchdown to again pull Frontenac within 22-15 midway through the third stanza, but Holton answered with a 67-yard TD run by Hundley on the very next play and Holton improved to 7-4 on the season.  Hundley had another monster night with 240 yards on 26 carries to make sure the Wildcats won at least 7 games in a season for the 20th time in the last 21 years!

Frontenac finished the year 9-2 and ran for just 91 yards. Terlip was 15-29 passing for 225 yards with Wyatt Frazier hauling in seven passes for 143 yards including a 47-yard catch that set up a short touchdown to make it 35-22 in the final two minutes. But Bear recovered the ensuing onside kick for the Wildcats.

Dillon had 52 yards rushing and the touchdown pass, while Holton got a lift from the return of Logan Altenburg, who played for the first time since a nasty broken arm and surgery after week one this season. The  Wildcats had another big night from their senior two-way lineman including Trevor Barnett who posted a huge sack, Dalton Roush, Bear and Kayden Wheeler. Rylan Amon was one of the top tacklers on the night from his linebacker spot while Cale Hein also had a stellar defensive night in the secondary. Senior Logan Peterson also returned from off-season knee surgery to play his first game of the year as the nine Holton seniors were praised by Coach Brooks Barta for their unselfishness, leadership, and progress with a toughness mentality that has helped this team get to a new level of football the past couple weeks. 

Holton next gets a rematch with Hayden in Topeka for Sub-State this Friday night at 7:00 PM. Hayden won the first meeting of the season 24-7 in week seven in a game that Holton had more yards and won most statisical categories, with the exception of penalties and turnovers, when they fumbled away a couple redzone opportunities.    

©2024 MSC Sports
Hiawatha, KS 66434
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