Monday, 24 June 2019
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Tiger’s Tame Wildcats for First Time in Over 20 Years
By Jake Spalding
Copyright: MSC Sports

On a night where a lot went wrong, the Wildcats still had their chances. Holton lost to Jefferson West for the first time in over two decades on Friday night 14-12. How? Timely mistakes.  Now don’t take anything away from Steve Johnson’s Tigers, they played their style of game, and withstood Holton’s punches. Yet, it seemed that Holton had every opportunity to come out victorious.

Holton got on the board first at the 2:20 mark of the first half when Konner Tannahill rushed from three yards out to give Holton a 6-0 lead (2pt conversion failed). Mind you, Holton had possession of the football for 21+ minutes of the 24 available in the first half, drove the length of the field twice and could only muster up six points out of it. Jefferson West responded quickly with :30 left in the 2nd Quarter with a touchdown of their own to give them the 7-6 lead going into halftime.

Neither team’s offense showed much life in the 3rd quarter as it was punt after punt from each side, until Holton’s first real mistake happened. A high snap over punter Jackson Martin’s head went flying back inside the 10-yard line. All Jackson could do was to cover it up and give the Tigers possession at that spot.  Yet, Holton caught a break from Jefferson West as sophomore quarterback Cade Ross (5'6") had a snap go over his head on second and goal from the eight-yard-line all the way back to the 30. Holton however, couldn't take advantage as after another incomplete pass it was 4th and goal from the 30 and Ross hit his #1 receiver Zeth Unruh, who too the ball to the two-yard-line being being stopped.  So, Holton took over from there. Still only down 7-6.

Following another Holton punt and a few plays into the ensuing Tiger drive, Ross found Joe Anderson wide open in the end zone on a 3rd and 5 from Holton’s 20-yard line. With time running down and Holton trailing 14-6, it felt like it was going to be another “typical Holton drive” that locals have become accustomed to. With just over 6 minutes to go, Holton had the ball at their own 30-yard line. A few plays of going nowhere and a penalty to set them back forced Holton into a 3rd and 17 with the clock running and just over four minutes to go. Zane Moylan, who shared quarterback duties with Parker Gilliland, connected with Jayger Carson for a 32-yard pitch and catch to put the wildcats back in business. They would end up scoring on a 4th and 1 opportunity with :20 left in the game on a Moylan pass to Kolby Rousch. Only needing a 2pt conversion to likely force overtime at home, Holton tried a quick pitch to the outside and Jeff West wasn’t about to let this opportunity slip away, as they stopped the Wildcats and went on to claim their first win over Holton in Steve Johnson’s tenure with the Tigers.

Holton (0-1), who has started slow many seasons of late, but always improved and got better for two decades under Coach Brooks Barta while qualifing for the playoffs and turning into a real threat, will play at impressive Perry-Lecompton (1-0) next Friday.  Catch all the action on the Holton Channel at, click listen live and select the Holton Channel.

Jefferson West (1-0) will play at home vs Royal Valley with live broadcast on KNZA 103.9 FM. Jefferson West has a real shot at starting this year out 4-0, Steve Johnson’s Tiger’s might be a dark horse in the new Class 3A.

©2019 MSC Sports
Hiawatha, KS 66434
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