It has often been said that linemen do not receive enough credit for all they do on the playing field.

It has often been said that linemen do not receive enough credit for all they do on the playing field.

St. Mary’s Colgan senior tackle Daniel Humble changed the momentum of the biggest game of Colgan’s regular season Friday night and helped the Panthers win the Class 2-1A District 1 championship, 28-21.

After the game, Humble accepted the District 1 championship trophy on behalf of the Colgan team.

The previously undefeated and No. 2-ranked Olpe Eagles led No. 1-ranked Colgan 14-0 at halftime, dominating the first half like nobody had played Colgan all season.

Olpe received the ball first in the second half. On first down, bruising fullback Tyson Pettijohn took a handoff from quarterback Jake Brinkman. Humble met Pettijohn in the backfield, made contact, knocked the ball loose and recovered the fumble inside Olpe territory.

Four plays later, Colgan scored its first touchdown on a 16-yard pass from senior quarterback Nate Arnold to junior fullback Zach Smith.

Field position and turnovers shaped the outcome of the game.

Olpe fumbled on its next play from scrimmage, as Olpe running back Linden Stueve ran into Brinkman and caused a fumble recovered by Zach Smith. Colgan did not take advantage of the second Olpe fumble in as many second-half plays.

Colgan forced an Olpe three-and-out on the Eagles’ third possession of the second half. Zach Smith ran in a 2-yard touchdown and Austin Barone’s extra point gave Colgan a 14-14 tie ballgame.

Senior defensive back Andy Farmer forced Olpe’s third second-half turnover with a diving one-handed interception, jumping in front of Olpe receiver Mitchell Argabright. Farmer atoned for giving Olpe 15 additional yards on a personal foul penalty two plays before his crucial interception.

On the second play after Farmer’s interception, Christian Smith scored the go-ahead and game-winning touchdown on a 47-yard screen pass from Arnold with 17 seconds remaining in the third. Smith made four defenders miss him and Colgan took a 21-14 advantage going into the final quarter.

Farmer sealed the district title on a 75-yard touchdown pass from Arnold, with 5:55 remaining in the game. Senior Tyler Dawson delivered a block that gave Farmer running room to the end zone. Arnold threw three touchdowns on the night.

Olpe held Colgan to 47 total yards in the first half and scored two short-yardage touchdowns. Pettijohn scored the first touchdown on a 1-yard run and Stueve made a 3-yard touchdown run seven plays after Christian Smith fumbled inside Olpe territory.

Stueve added a second touchdown on the final play of the game, as Brinkman found Stueve in the back of the end zone.
Colgan finishes its regular season with a perfect 9-0 record. The Panthers will face Oskaloosa next Friday at Hutchinson Field.