Olathe South holds off Leavenworth

By Jason Strickland The Leavenworth Times
Posted: September 21, 2013 - 12:10 AM

The Pioneers comeback from down 13 points fell just short in an 18-16 Homecoming loss to Olathe South Friday night.

Leavenworth may have dropped to 1-2 after the loss, but head coach Mark Littrell went up to several individual players to hug them and congratulate them on the effort.

“Those kids battled their tails off,” Littrell said. “They did a great job. We asked them at halftime to believe and just keep playing hard, and they did it.”

Littrell was the head coach for the Falcons from 1998-2007 and was on the staff for 27 years, but he made it clear that this game wasn't about him coaching against his old school.

“It didn't matter who it was,” he said. “This was about these kids right here. Not about me, not about Olathe South.”

The score was 16-3 after some sloppy play in the first half, but the second half became a different story.

The first comeback was a 10-yard touchdown run by senior running back Jason Randall on Leavenworth's first drive of the second half after the Olathe South Falcons' punter had to fall on the ball after bobbling the snap to put the Pioneers 23 yards from the goal line.

The crowd started chanting “Jason Randall” after that score made it 16-10 Falcons.

The Pioneers then forced a punt, but it was downed at the 1-yard line. Junior quarterback Landry Hodges was taken down in the end zone after having problems with the snap.

The safety made it 18-10 with 4:04 left in the third quarter.

The Falcons then drove inside the 5-yard line, but the Pioneers defense didn't give up.

Leavenworth recovered a fumble in the end zone for a touchback late in the third quarter, which led to a 34-yard touchdown run by Randall to get the Pioneers within two points.