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Perry Stops Holton - Returns to 3A State Championship
By Justin Fluke
Copyright: MSC Sports

Holton won the turnover battle, but it was the impressive Perry Lecompton defense that made two key stops on fourth down and short in the second half that set up a couple short touchdown drives in a 22-9 Sub State victory. The Wildcats were just 2-9 against the Kaws defense on third down plays while Thad Metcalfe ran for 112 yards and passed for 189 to lead Perry back to the 3A State title game in Hutchinson where they will rematch against Andale. 

In their week three rematch of a 28-14 Perry victory, the Big 7 foes traded a pair of punts with only one first down combined in a scoreless first quarter on Friday night. It was then Holton that put together a 90-yard drive on 16 plays before a holding penalty in the redzone left them to settle for a Matt Lierz 24-yard field goal and the 3-0 advantage. Perry responded with a drive that included third down conversions of 7, 10 and 6 yards with passing plays that led to a 27-yard TD pass from Metcalfe to Parker Stone for the go-around touchdown.  Stone had a huge night after sitting out the last two playoff games in covid quarantine delivering eight receptions for 109 yards. Metcalfe hit Dawson Williams for the two-point-converstion to lead 8-3 at halftime and was nearly perfect passing on the night completing 16 of 20 attempts. 

Perry opened the second half with more passing and drove the ball to the Holton 12-yard-line, but a Kaw touchdown on fouth down was taken off the board because of an ilegal forward pass that gave Holton the possession. The Wildcats faced third down and less than one yard after a measurement, but was stuffed on running plays on both third and fourth down which turned the game in the Kaws favor as Perry took over at the 22-yard line and scored three plays later on a Metcalfe five-yard run and his conversion run made it 16-3 halfway through the third period. Two drives later following a Perry fumble, Holton was stuffed on a fourth down and two at their own 40 and the Kaws again capatilized with another Metcalfe rushing score to lead 22-3 at the 5:57 mark in the fourth quarter. 

Holton did get a touchdown from senior Canon Karn to pull within 22-9 with 2:59 remaininig, but just missed an open opportunity to recover the ensuing onside kick and would see their season end at 9-2 with both losses to Perry Lecompton. Karn had 109 yards rushing on 19 carries and finished his senior campaign with just over 1,400 rushing yards and his 20th TD. Konnor Tannahill added 61 yards on 17 carries and Reese Holaday had two catches for 57 yards, including a reverse pass from Matt Lierz. Eight of the 10 Holton seniors started on offense and helped the Wildcats reach sub state for the first time in four years after winning another district title while posting the most wins since 2015, even with having one game cancelled. 

Perry Lecompton, who won the Big 7 League for the first time this year, now has the most wins in school history for a season and will take an 11-1 record back to the state title game this Saturday in Hutchinson. They will face an Andale (11-0) team that beat them 35-7 last year and has now won 24 consecutive games following their 49-0 impressive shutout against Wichita Collegiate on Friday. Andale has won all their games by at least three touchdowns this season. Kickoff is at 1:00 PM with live and free local coverage of Perry Lecompton broadcast November 28th on KNZA 103.9 FM Radio as well as   

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Hiawatha, KS 66434
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