The time for State championships is upon us, and three local football teams punched their tickets to title games last week, as Nemaha Central and Perry Lecompton of the Big 7 and Centralia of the Twin Valley League are all set to play for State glory on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.
Nemaha Central got the job done by dominating a tough Riley County squad, as the Thunder ran away with the 39-14 win in the semi-final. The Seneca team sits at 10-2 heading into the Class 2A championship game against the 9-3 Norton Bluejays. At one point this season, the Thunder’s chances to even reach the playoffs looked slim, as they sat at 1-2 after their first three games, but have reeled off 9 straight wins to reach Saturday’s finale in Salina.
Fellow Big 7 member Perry Lecompton sits at 9-3 after knocking off Hayden by a score of 35-27. The Kaws were roughed up in the Big 7 this year, going 1-3 in league play, but registering a perfect 8-0 record outside of the league. Perry will match up in the Class 3A title game in Hutchinson with an Andale Indians team that has absolutely rolled over opponents this year and sits at 12-0.
Twin Valley power Centralia knocked off the Northeast Kansas League’s Jackson Heights in their semi-final game by a whopping 44-6 score to earn their way to the Class 1A State title game. The 11-1 Panthers will meet the 12-0 Smith Center Redmen at Hays for their championship bid. While Centralia walked into the game over the Cobras, the Redmen scratched out 20-19 win over Plainville.