TROY — Mother nature was a factor in the sub-state game of the Kansas Class 2-1A Football State Football Championship, where St. Mary’s Colgan’s season came to an end following a 28-0 loss to Troy on Friday.
Both teams were battling the wind, but after the Panthers lost starting quarterback Billy Dickey on a non-contact injury. Troy took the momentum and never relinquished control in the 28-point win.
SMC finished the 2016 season with an overall record of 8-4.
After rolling out of the pocket on a third-and-long with a minute left in the first quarter, Dickey threw the ball away before being tackled, went down to the ground and never returned.
In the next Colgan possession, backup quarterback Bryce Hutchins was thrown into a difficult situation, which quickly went from bad to worse.
Following a sack on first down, the second snap of the drive sailed over Hutchins’ head and into the end zone, where Max Wilson quickly dove on it and was touched down by the Trojans for a safety.
Kicking off from the 20-yard line following the safety, the Panthers gave the ball back to the Trojans on their own 40-yard line.
Troy capitalized on the good field position by scoring on a 35-yard touchdown run to extend the lead to 9-0.
The Trojans later added to the lead, with under a minute to play in the first half, cashing in from 4 yards out with a touchdown run, which capped off a 10-play, 70-yard drive.
Again Troy hit the scoreboard, this time late in the third quarter, to go up 21-0, taking complete control of the ball game.
Driving the ball into the heavy wind, the Trojans wisely ran the ball up the field — after forcing an SMC three-and-out — milking the clock en route to scoring a touchdown.
The Trojans started the drive on their own 9-yard line, and went 91 yards in 13 plays — all running plays — before crossing the goal line with six seconds remaining in the quarter.
With the wind at their backs in the fourth quarter, the Trojans tacked on one more touchdown to go up by 28 points, before the end of the contest.
Hutchins didn’t come into an ideal situation, but finished with 33 passing yards, completing 4-of-5 passes.
Zach Hizey anchored the defense, with five tackles and one fumble recovery.
No official word was given on the status of Dickey, but he did walk off the field with little help from the training staff.
The 11 graduating seniors for the Panthers are Dickey, Drew Beck, Dominic Piccini, Tyler Brynds, Alex Brown, Garrett VanBecelaere, Josh Hayes, Ethan Ward, Jacob Otter, Connor Smith and Hizey.
-- Jordan Buckamneer is a sports reporter of the Pittsburg Morning Sun. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on twitter @jbuckamneer.