WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — This week’s Game of the Week takes us to a sectional playoff matchup between Maize South and Kapaun Mt. Carmel.
Beginning with Maize South, the Mavericks enter this contest at 8-2. They’re relishing the underdog role as they prepare to take on the top-seeded Crusaders.
Players and coaches say the number one key to the game will be taking care of the football.
“We just need to be sound,” Maize South head coach Brent Pfeifer said. “Don’t make mistakes. They don’t make a lot on offense, handing the ball off as often as they do, so for us, we just have to take care of the ball and not give them extra chances. Not turning it over and penalties will be the big things for us.”
“They are a clock-draining team, and so when we’re out on offense, we need to take advantage of the time we have and limit the turnovers,” Mavericks tight end Jeron Askren said.
“Everyone has to do their assignment,” Maize South linebacker Trent Luce said. “We must be confident, going into the game knowing we can win. I believe we can. It’s just going to be a tough, physical game. Whoever comes out on top is likely going to go to state.”)
On the other sideline, Kapaun Mt. Carmel has one of the most electric running backs in the state in Omari Elias, and he’s the main cog in their offensive strategy.
Crusaders head coach Weston Schartz didn’t mince words when he spoke about the Air Force commit’s role in the game.
“There are no wrinkles with us. We’re going to do what we do,” Schartz said. “We got a couple of little things we may tweak formation-wise, but we’re not going to change. Omari is going to get the ball, do some play action and let the chips fall where they fall.”
“We just need to not worry about our past record because both us and Maize South are 0-0 entering this game,” Crusaders offensive lineman Henry Orth said. “So it’s just nothing to do with those past games, and just focus on the one in front of us.”
“We’ve got good chemistry, we’ve played with each other for most of our life, and we know each other well,” Kapaun offensive lineman Paul Bloomer said. “We know our strengths and our weaknesses. And when we’re on the field, we may not be the fastest or the strongest team, but we know how to play with each other.”
KSN will have more coverage of this matchup as well as the rest of the playoff action Friday.