Blue Valley ends Mill Valley's perfect season

Suzett Klepac/Special to PrepsKC

By David Svoboda PrepsKC staff writer
Posted: November 15, 2013 - 11:37 PM

Blue Valley used a hard hitting defense and an efficient offense to roll over Mill Valley 38-0 Friday night in a Kansas Class 5A sectional battle at Blue Valley.
That Tiger defense knocked two Mill Valley quarterbacks from the game with concussions, both coming on clean but big hits – the type of hits that were prevalent all night.
“We feel like we have a really physical group,” Blue Valley Coach Eric Driskell said following the contest, which saw his team move to 8-3 overall and into a Sub-State contest against Blue Valley West. “And we played that way all night against a really good Mill Valley team.”
Mill Valley Coach Joel Applebee agreed.
“They are a very physical team,” he said. “That’s something we knew coming in, and we didn’t respond real well at the beginning, particularly offensively.”
Blue Valley, indeed, set a physical tone early – on the third play from scrimmage for Mill Valley – when it dealt the Jaguars a blow from which Mill Valley struggled all night to recover.
As Jaguar quarterback Logan Koch was flushed from the pocket on a pass play and scrambled toward the Blue Valley sideline, he was hit while throwing and driven to the turf, sustaining a concussion.
After being attended to for approximately five minutes, Koch was taken from the field area on a medical cart and to the locker room for further observation.
Losing its quarterback – albeit on a legal hit – was a killer for the Jaguars, though the Mill Valley defense momentarily stiffened immediately after Koch’s departure.
Mill Valley was able to muster just 76 yards of total offense for the game against the stout Tiger defense, which saw its starters able to head to the sideline to watch nearly the entire final quarter of play.
The Blue Valley offensive attack was the beneficiary of strong efforts by a number of players. The Tigers ended the night with 405 total yards on offense, including 100-yard rushing nights from Chance Nelson, who had 142 yards and a touchdown, and Montana Brady, who rumbled for 106 yards and two scores.
Tiger QB Logan Brettell had 66 yards through the air and another 70 on the ground in leading the Blue Valley offense to points in each of the four quarters.
Blue Valley got on the board first when Brettell – who also handles PAT and field goal duties – hit a 36-yard field goal with just less than four minutes left in the first quarter to give the Tigers a 3-0 lead.
On the ensuing Mill Valley drive, reserve quarterback Ty Bruce was stripped of the ball on a third-down play by Tiger defensive end Jalen Cooks, and linebacker Joe Forlenza scooped up the loose ball and rumbled in for a 19-yard touchdown.
Cooks’ play was reminiscent of the classic Derrick Thomas chop/strip sack, and the Forlenza return, coupled with a Brettell extra point, made it 10-0 Tigers.
The Mill Valley defense was able to intercept Brettell in the end zone to snuff a second-quarter Tiger scoring threat, but the Tigers were able to punch it in once in the period for a 17-0 halftime edge.
“I thought defensively we played real well,” Applebee said of a period in the second quarter, which led up to and included the interception of Brettell. “We just needed to get something offensively, particularly on the ground, and we just could not.”
The second-quarter score for the Tigers came when backup quarterback Henry McGrew – a 6-foot-3, 241-pound load – took, and then bobbled, a direct snap, and then rumbled into the end zone from two yards out. When Brettell hit the PAT, it was 17-0.
As one-sided as the opening 24 minutes was, the next 13 minutes of the game – the third quarter and first minute of the fourth – may have even been more so.
Blue Valley scored three times during the span, and all three times were on the ground, with all three efforts being of 22 yards or longer.
Nelson’s 25-yard jaunt made it 24-0 before Brady’s pair of touchdown dashes – from 22 and 37 yards – led to the final outcome.
Just moments after Brady’s second TD made it 38-0, the Tiger defense knocked backup Jaguar QB Bruce from the game, putting an exclamation point on things. Mill Valley ended its year at 10-1.