PITTSBURG — It’s so far, so good for the Pittsburg High School football team in the playoffs, as the Purple Dragons coasted to a 47-8 win over KC Washington to earn a spot in regionals on Friday at Hutchinson Field.
The Purple Dragons had everything working for them right from the opening kick, as they jumped out to a 34-point lead in the first quarter en route to advancing to the sectional round.
“We wanted the starters to show up and take of business, and they did exactly that,” PHS head coach Tom Nickelson said. “The defense was flying around. Our kids played hard, played fast, played physical and they played clean. They took care of business early, which allowed us to get some of our other subs in.”
KC Washington received the opening kick, but an unfortunate start to the game saw the Wildcats’ starting quarterback Scyler Wallace go down with an injury on the first play of the contest.
Two plays later, a fumble recovered by Tye Cicero gave Pittsburg the ball on the Wildcats’ 19-yard line.
The Purple Dragons capitalized on the field position, as Chase Curtis connected with Brett Wiemers on an 18-yard touchdown pass put PHS ahead at 7-0.
KC Washington took over at its own 20-yard line following the touchdown and was forced into a three-and-out by the PHS defense, but a miscue on the snap resulted in the ball bouncing out of the back of the end zone for a safety to push the score to 9-0 lead.
The Purple Dragons picked up deep in KC territory after the punt and increased the lead to 16-0 two plays later.
Corbin Jefferson put PHS on the goal line after picking up 32 yards on the first play of the new drive and Brandis Evans finished the job on the next play, pushing into the end zone for the touchdown.
KC Washington started deep in its own territory for a second consecutive time after receiving the kick and gave up two more points as a result of a second safety which occurred on a mishandled snap.
The Purple Dragons went on to score two more times before the end of the first quarter, as Jefferson ran into the end zone from 10 yards out and Nathan Neef split the uprights from 34 yards to make the score 34-0.
With running clock in effect to begin the second quarter, PHS made it a 41-0 contest on the strength of a four-yard touchdown run by Evans.
The Purple Dragons earned their largest lead of the game on a five-yard touchdown run by Shay Mahnken halfway through the third quarter, but the Wildcats responded with a touchdown of their own in the fourth to avoid the shutout.
Pittsburg will host Kansas City-Turner at 7 p.m. on Friday.
— Jordan Buckamneer is the sports editor of the Pittsburg Morning Sun. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @jbuckamneer.