Smoky advances; Little River edged

By Steve Sell
November 04, 2017

The defense never rested for the Smoky Valley Vikings Friday night.

The Vikings never permitted normally high-scoring Wichita Collegiate to find the end zone at Anderson Field and they did just enough offensively to secure a 12-2 victory in the first round of the Class 4A Division II playoffs.

The Vikings are now 9-1 and winners of eight straight. They will remain home next Friday to take on Holcomb, which also is 9-1.

Smoky Valley took a 6-0 lead late in the first half on 2-yard run by Riley Odell, with a 2-point try not successful.

After Collegiate came up with a safety early in the fourth quarter, the Vikings put the game away with 33 seconds left on a Kyle Anderson 5-yard run.

Yards were at a premium as Smoky Valley managed just 211, but held the Spartans to only 182.

Anderson finished with 106 yards on 25 carries. Collegiate’s dual threat Cody McNerny had 58 yards rushing on 18 carries and was just 9 of 22 for 114 yards and two picks.

• South Central 27, Little River 20 — A fourth-quarter touchdown by South Central ended Little River’s season as the Redskins twice had one-point leads but couldn’t hang on in 8-Man Division I play.

Little River had taken a 20-19 lead in the fourth quarter on a 1-yard run by Graham Stephens, but the 2-point conversion failed, which came back to play an important role.

Little River led 6-0 on a second-quarter score as Levi Swenson hooked up for a 50-yard strike to Peyton Harvey. South Central came back to lead 13-6 at the half. 

Swenson gave the Redskins a 14-13 lead in the third quarter on a 1-yard run, with Stephens running for the conversion. Before the period was over, South Central scored on a 65-yard run to regain the lead at 19-14.

Little River had a 65-48 advantage in plays, but South Central had a 360-256 edge in yards. The Redskins’ passing game actually was better than it has been all season with 107 yards to go with the 149 on the ground.

Harvey rushed for 68 yards on 12 carries, while Stephens had 52 on 11. Swenson completed five passes to five different receivers.

Little River ended its season with a 7-3 record.