Top of the heap

Debbie Squires/PrepsKC

By SJ Munoz PrepsKC Senior Writer
Posted: September 9, 2017 - 12:00 AM


A top-five battle between Class 6 No. 2 Park Hill and Class 6 No. 3 Blue Springs came down to the last play on Friday night at Park Hill District Stadium.

The Trojans, an offensive juggernaut so far this season, leaned heavily on their defense all night sealing the victory with an interception in their own end zone with just seven seconds left.

"This game was a big deal to us, I told the kids all week this was going to be a 12-round fight, there was no getting out of this after six rounds like we tried to last year," Park Hill head coach Josh Hood said. "I was proud of how we came out and executed for all four quarters. Our physicality really showed up tonight against an outstanding opponent."

Park Hill struck first with a quarterback sneak by senior Billy Maples at 4:10 of the first quarter.

The Blue Springs answer came just over three minutes later when a Tre Wheaton took a shovel pass from Chase Donohoe into the end zone to tie the game at seven.

The Trojans went back on top by seven on a touchdown pass from Maples to Joe Webb with 9:47 to play in the first half.

A field goal by the Wildcats with just under three minutes to play in the second quarter made it a 14-10 lead for the home team.

Park Hill came up with a big special teams’ play on the next possession recovering a fumbled punt and on the very next play, Maples connected with freshman Jaylin Noel who raced down the sidelines for the TD to make it 21-10.

Just before the half, Blue Springs got a critical score on a TD run by Ethan Parton, to cut the lead to four (21-17).

With the lead still at four, and less than two minutes to play in the third, the Trojans came up with a fumble recovery and a TD pass from Maples to Ronnie Bell to go up by 11.

A trick play by Blue Springs at the 9:49 mark of the fourth gave the Wildcats new life. The touchdown pass from sophomore fullback Danny Wheeler to Wheaton followed by a two-point conversion pulled Blue Springs to within 28-25.

However the three-point lead proved to be enough for the Park Hill defense as they turned the Wildcats over on downs in the final two minutes before getting the game-clinching INT on the Wildcats' final possession.

The Trojans (4-0) will try for their fifth win of the season at Lawrence Free State next week, while Blue Springs (2-2) hosts Shawnee Mission West.