Leavenworth grabs win over SM Northwest

By Brent Lager The Leavenworth Times
Posted: September 14, 2012 - 11:40 PM

Amid laughter, shouts and cheers, Pioneer linebacker Josh Ammel stood to his full 6-foot-3-inch frame in a isolated corner of a cramped locker room.

He spoke of teamwork, heart and then, in his low, baritone voice, delivered one final message.

“Losing is no longer a thought at Leavenworth.”

After the evening the linebacker and the rest of the Pioneer defense just put together, the boast was well deserved.
Behind an outstanding defensive effort and an articulate performance by senior quarterback Judson Cole, the Leavenworth football team defeated Shawnee Mission Northwest 17-7 Friday. The squad is now 2-1, matching last year’s win total in just its third game of the season.

“They are starting to feel like they can win and that was the biggest thing when I got here, they didn’t have that,” LV coach Kevin Kopecky said. “This group of seniors have been with me all three years and have bought into what we have done. I think we can be a dangerous football team when we get some confidence.”

Leavenworth began the game with the ball Friday and wasted little time. On the first play, Cole hit Jeff George for a 42-yard bomb. However, the drive stalled and the Cougars had good field position after a failed fake punt attempt.
Yet, as a sign of things to come, the Pioneer defense responded. Shawnee Mission Northwest drove into the LV red zone, where a bone-jarring Leavenworth hit forced a fumble.

The turnover allowed the Pioneer offense to again march down the field before ultimately punting. Northwest did the same minutes later and the first quarter ended scoreless.

In the second, the game opened up. On the ninth play of the period’s first drive, Cole found George for a seven-yard TD strike. The extra point made the score 7-0 LV with eight minutes until half.

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