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Subway Sports Spotlight for Sept. 8

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Kansas Pregame looks at a few notable stories of the week from the Kansas high school sports world

  • Wichita Northwest/Bishop Carroll, Chapman's Taylor Briggs and Lincoln's Jaycee Vath, Wabaunsee volleyball and the Parson/Iola game are just a few of the items featured in our new Subway Sports Spotlight. (Photo credit, clockwise from top left: Anna Harter, Everett Royer/, Erick Mitchell/Iola Register, Everett Royer/
    Wichita Northwest/Bishop Carroll, Chapman's Taylor Briggs and Lincoln's Jaycee Vath, Wabaunsee volleyball and the Parson/Iola game are just a few of the items featured in our new Subway Sports Spotlight. (Photo credit, clockwise from top left: Anna Harter, Everett Royer/, Erick Mitchell/Iola Register, Everett Royer/

In this new weekly feature Kansas Pregame writers will take a look at a few notable performances from across the state.

Parsons and Iola deliver a five overtime thriller

Parsons and Iola treated the fans in Parsons to a whole bunch of free football with a five overtime thriller that saw the Vikings come from 16-points down to beat the Mustangs 54-48.

Iola held a 22-6 lead with just under eight minutes in the fourth quarter before Parsons quarterback Ethan Houk connected with wide receiver Dariq Williams on a pair of touchdown passes to tie the game at 22 with just under three minutes to go.

Both teams scored rushing touchdowns in the first overtime and both teams were unable to convert PAT attempts making it 28-28 and delivering a second OT.

Houk connected with Williams to open the scoring in the second OT and the successful 2-point try made it 36-28 Parsons. Iola would answer after a penalty with a 15-yard touchdown pass from Casen Barker to Drake Sellman and a successful 2-point try to tie the game at 36 and send it to a third OT.

A pair of rushing touchdowns - a 10-yarder from Iola's Holden Barker and a 5-yarder from Houk - and two failed 2-point tries would knot the score at 42 and send the game to yet another OT.

In the fourth overtime the two teams still couldn't gain any separation as Houk connected with Williams yet again, this time on a 10-yard TD pass, while Iola answered with a 1-yard Casen Barker run. Both teams failed to convert PAT attempts and one more OT was on the agenda with the teams tied at 48.

Parsons stripped the ball from the Iola quarterback and on their ensuing offensive possession Houk connected with Williams for the last time of the night to deliver a thrilling win 54-48 in the fifth OT.

Parsons QB Ethan Houk, playing in the absence of the injured DaQuan Johnson, completed 17 of 34 passes for 244 yards and five touchdowns, with all five scoring passes going to Dariq Williams, who caught 12 total passes for 203 yards in the win. Houk also had 50 yards rushing and two scores on eight carries while Yusef Kindrick added 65 yards and one TD on 14 carries.

Both Casen Barker and Zane Whitney rushed for more than 100 yards for the Mustangs while Iola's defense recorded three interceptions, including two from Isaac Badders.

Iola was 3-6 last year and lost their season opener with Parsons a year ago 49-14. Parsons was one of the state's great turnaround stories last season finishing 8-3 under first year coach Kurt Friess.

Chapman's Erickson bursts on the scene

This offseason, Irish coach Kurt Webster was excited about the addition of junior transfer Trevor Erickson, who spent the last two seasons in Georgia after his family moved from the Chapman area following his eighth grade year. The rest of the state now understands Webster's anticipation after Erickson tallied 181 yards rushing on 23 carries and went four of eight passing with a beautiful touchdown pass against what is expected to be one of the state's top defenses from Marysville. He also recorded 12 tackles from his linebacker spot for the Irish defense.

The Irish lost to the state-ranked Bulldogs, but gave them all they could handle in a 34-22 defeat.

Northwest downs Bishop Carroll in low scoring affair

After combining for 151 points in last November's quarterfinal playoff match-up the Grizzlies and Golden Eagles generated just 39 points in Friday's season opening contest as Northwest overcame five lost fumbles to down BC 21-17.

Carroll led 10-8 at the half and both teams went scoreless in the third quarter before Northwest outscored BC 13-7 in the final stanza in yet another outstanding match-up between these two rivals.

Northwest QB Reagan Jones delivered an outstanding performance completing 10 of 16 passes for 118 yards with two touchdowns while rushing for 105 yards on 25 carries. Grizzly running back Jamar Martin looked good in replacing standout Breece Hall, now at Iowa State, rushing for 153 yards on 15 carries. Zion Jones showed off his versatility with nine catches for 104 yards and two scores along with 84 yards in the return game.

Valley Heights wins big, honors late coach

The Valley Heights Mustangs were dominant in their 52-7 win over Troy and led 38-0 at the half scoring all 38 of those points in the second quarter.

But it was the gesture before the game that earned both teams the respect of the fans as the Mustangs and Trojans walked out of the locker room together to honor former Valley Heights assistant Lamar E. "Lew" Whitson, III. Whitson, a well respected teacher and coach at Valley Heights since 2008, died in a car accident in June.

The two teams circled Whitson's initials, that were painted on the field by the team earlier in the day, and observed a moment of silence. The Troy coaches also wore purple shirts to honor Whitson.



Briggs and Vath start season in style

After recording dominant state championships last season Chapman junior Taylor Briggs and Lincoln junior Jaycee Vath are looking for more hardware.

Briggs, the two-time 4A champion, opened the season at the Abilene Invitational and took home first place on the two mile course in a time of 13:10, more than 30 seconds better than runner-up Jentrie Alderson from Southeast of Saline. Briggs is the only varsity runner for the Irish and could be on pace to be a four-time state champion.

Vath, who was second in class 2A as a freshman, led four Leopard runners to a 1A team championship last season and beat teammate Aubry Donley, the 1A runner-up, by more than 25 seconds. Vath and sophomores Raegen Stewart and Shelbie Ford are back to make a push for another team title. Donley is now running track at Friends University but the Leopards welcomed two new runners to the team and anticipate having enough to qualify as a team at either the 1A or 2A level, depending upon what class they compete in after the Sept. 20 count day.

Silver Lake opens volleyball season Saturday

The defending class 3A champions had one of the latest starts of the volleyball season with their first action of 2019 in Saturday's Jeff West Invite. The Eagles went 4-1 with victories over Santa Fe Trail (25-13, 25-13), Oskaloosa (25-21, 25-10), Jeff West (25-7, 25-14) and Valley Falls (25-6, 25-9), but lost to Royal Valley (25-17, 19-25, 19-25).

Silver Lake won its second title in three years last season and entered this season as the top ranked team in the Kansas Volleyball Association 3A rankings. Royal Valley, fresh off a state championship in basketball, was preseason ranked second.

Centralia welcomes new coach, looks to continue success

Former Chapman girls basketball coach Nick Evans took over volleyball powerhouse Centralia in the offseason after long-time coaches Kimbrook and Kim Tennal retired following highly successful coaching careers. The Panthers went undefeated last season at 47-0 and won their third straight 1A title and 80th straight match.

This year, the Panthers suffered their first loss on their first weekend of play finishing second in the Amy Schutter Memorial Tournament Saturday, Aug. 30, losing twice to host Wabaunsee, the preseason number one in class 2A. The Panthers went 3-2 on the day with victories over Oskaloosa (21-25, 25-17, 25-15), Mission Valley (25-14, 25-15) and Rock Creek (25-22, 25-20).

The Panthers improved to 5-2 on Tuesday beating Clifton-Clyde (25-11, 25-17) and Troy (25-16, 25-11) in a home triangular.

Garden Plain begins title defense at tough triangular

The 2018-19 state champions in both volleyball and girls basketball the Owls, who entered the season ranked fourth in 2A, began their 2019 title defense with a difficult home triangular Thursday against quality opponents from Bluestem and Sedgwick.

The Owls dominated Bluestem 25-5, 25-13. and were pushed to three sets by second ranked Sedgwick losing the first set 25-21 and taking the last two 25-15, 25-16. Senior Natasha Dooley led the Owls with 20 total kills on the night.

Wabaunsee improves to 6-1

Wabaunsee started the season as the top ranked team in 2A volleyball and immediately showed why, winning their own Amy Schutter Invitational Aug. 31 including two wins over Centralia. The Chargers split in their home triangular with Chapman and Riley County on Tuesday, losing to the Irish 25-23, 25-18 and downing the Falcons 25-13, 25-19.

Wabaunsee already has four players with more than 30 kills on the season led by senior Megan Strait with 38 and followed by senior Laurel Barber and sophomore Lauren Schutter with 33 each. Junior Maddy Wertzberger rounds out the quartet with 31 kills.

Coaches and parents, aware of an interesting statistic, a cool tradition, or a heartwarming act of kindness by your team? Email us details for future releases of the Subway Sports Spotlight, and head to Subway for pre- or post-game meals, catering or Footlong Faves starting at $4.99. Order online at