Sports news and views
Time for another round of sports news and views…
News — McPherson High’s football team continues to control its own AVCTL Division III destiny with an emotional 44-28 victory over Buhler to renew a rivalry that had been dormant for 19 years.
Views — If the Bullpups go on and reach great heights this year, this will be the game they look back on as the impetus. There were a lot of folks who didn’t think MHS could pull it off, but the Bullpups did whatever they wanted offensively, especially in the passing game where sophomore Kyler Kinnamon torched the Buhler defense for a mind-boggling 393 yards. He seems to get better every week, but he’ll be the first to thank his offensive line for giving him the time to throw and some glue-fingered receivers who ran unabated in the loose Crusader secondary. The MHS defense continues to show signs of improving, which actually could be the key to how far this team goes. Friday’s game here against Winfield is crucial, as a victory would in all probability set up a league championship game next week at Mulvane.
News — McPherson High’s volleyball team already has reached the 20-victory level and we’re not even out of September.
Views — The Bullpups took second place last weekend at a high-powered Newton Invitational, losing only Wichita Northwest, the No. 5-ranked team in Class 6A. MHS has some quality teams to face this weekend at the Ottawa Invitational (there are six ranked teams in the field), then hosts it own tournament next week, which also has a quality field. This is a team that figures to be there at the end, as it has so many weapons.
News — With three weeks left in the regular season, the McPherson High soccer team is 9-1.
Views — The Bullpups’ only loss is to Salina Central, a very good 5A team that needed overtime to do it. Like the volleyball team, the soccer team should have a deep postseason run, as it possesses the ball for long stretches and is difficult to score on.
News — McPherson College’s Bulldogs lose in the final 10 seconds on a tipped pass at the line of scrimmage that finds its way into the hands of Friends offensive lineman Cortlin Couture for an 18-17 victory.
Views — The Bulldogs would have been sitting so pretty had they been able to hold on, and they probably feel this is one they gave away, as they stopped themselves offensively a couple of times and gave up a 100-yard interception return for a touchdown. Had Mac won, that would have been a 3-0 start, with last-place Bethel coming up this week. Coach Pete Sterbick has put together a title-contending team, but it probably is going to need some help in what has turned into a wide-open KCAC race. A big game Saturday is in Salina when conference unbeatens Kansas Wesleyan and Friends square off. Having seen both teams, we give a slight advantage to Friends because of its defense, while Wesleyan’s defense showed some cracks last week against Bethany, especially during a 28-point Swede second half.
News — Kansas State goes into Norman and upsets the Oklahoma Sooners.
Views — We used the word “upset,” but was it really? The Sooners, who had an extra week to prepare for the game, have done nothing this year to distinguish themselves. Not to take away from the Wildcats’ outstanding accomplishment, but the Sooners do not seem to have the breathtaking athletes of previous years. Still, why the rest of the country can’t come to grips that the Wildcats are the real deal is beyond us. They very well could have the best coach in the country in Bill Snyder, who always takes a group of players that aren’t highly recruited and turns them into a well-oiled machine.
News — The Kansas City Chiefs stun New Orleans 27-24 in overtime for their first win of the year.
Views — We proclaimed in this very space last week that Kansas City is a candidate for the NFL’s worst team. Granted, it was an emotionally uplifting victory, coming back from a 24-6 deficit, due greatly to Jamaal Charles, who we were going to bench prior to the game in Fantasy Football, but chose not to. We’re still not convinced the Chiefs are going to win a lot of games, because they still have Matt Cassel at quarterback — and he hasn’t won over the Chiefs’ faithful by any stretch of the imagination — and a defense that can’t stop the run. This week’s home game with San Diego may be the game that shapes the rest of the season.