RE/MAX Big 3 Games of the Week

By Dion Clisso PrepsKC Managing Editor
Posted: November 4, 2014 - 8:58 AM

Blue Springs at Rockhurst
7 p.m. Friday at Vincent P. Dasta Stadium

Stop if you’ve heard this before. Blue Springs and Rockhurst are meeting in the playoffs. For the 10th time in the last 14 seasons the Wildcats and Hawklets will meet with one team ending its season.

In seven of those 10 games the winner went on to win the state title, so the winner of this game should feel good about what is yet to come. This a rematch of the game in the Week No. 6 game won by Rockhurst 14-13. That’s about par for the course as it seems like these teams always play a great game that goes down to the final possession.

This week both teams enter off big wins. Blue Springs pounded Raymore-Peculiar 42-17 while Rockhurst ran past Springfield Kickapoo 41-0. Both teams have been scoring a lot of points the last few weeks so this could come down to which defense makes the biggest plays.

Rockhurst has been steady winning nine straight since losing to Webb City in the second week of the season. Senior quarterback TJ Green has been the constant putting up big numbers while limiting mistakes. Green has led the Hawklets to more than 40 points seven times in 11 games, and if he gets big numbers again, Rockhurst should be on its way.

Standing in the way will be a defense led by Carlos and Khalil Davis. The two all-state defensive linemen have made their impact known all season on defense and are now getting time on the offensive line, which has spurred the Wildcats to score more than 30 points in every game since losing to Ray-Pec in week No. 7.

Liberty North at Park Hill
7 p.m. Friday at Park Hill D.A.C.

A year ago Park Hill’s season had been done for two weeks and Liberty North was running through the Class 4 playoffs. This year they meet in a Class 5 district championship game.

The Eagles have been one of the best defensive teams in the Metro all season long, and last week that defense shined in a 13-0 win over Staley. North has earned shutouts over Blue Springs South, Raytown and Grandview.

The Trojans have been one of the surprise teams going from three wins each of the last two seasons to an undefeated regular season this year. Park Hill’s offense has been a model of efficiency scoring at least 35 points in every game and over 40 in seven games.

This will be a big offense vs. defense showdown with the winner getting a game with the winner of the Winnetonka-Fort Osage contest.

Raytown South at Harrisonville
7 p.m. Friday at Harrisonville Stadium

This is a rematch from last year when Raytown South earned a hard-fought 32-28 win at Harrisonville keyed by a late kickoff return for a touchdown.

This year Harrisonville enters with just one loss while rolling through the Missouri River Valley Conference East. The only loss came to Savannah early in the season and the Wildcats have been solid since that point.

Raytown South has four losses but they came to Fort Osage, Kearney, Winnetonka and Platte County. Those four teams have combined for a 37-5 record on the season as the Cardinals have moved through the tough Suburban Small Six conference.

The big test in this game will be how Harrisonville handles the speed of Raytown South. Another test will be whether the Cardinals standout quarterback Jabril Cox plays after missing the last two games due to an injury. Cox is a difference-maker and the key to an offense that has scored under 30 points just twice this season.

Lawrence at Shawnee Mission East
7 p.m. Friday at Shawnee Mission North District Stadium

Shawnee Mission East has been dominant all season long but this will be the first time all season the Lancers have played a team with a winning record when they took the field.

East’s high-powered rushing attack has rolled past every team and it will look to continue that trend in the playoffs.

The Lions have been up and down all season but are coming off an explosive 66-28 win over Olathe East to wrap up a spot in the postseason.

This game will come down to Lawrence’s ability to slow down the Lancers attack while trying to force some turnovers to limit East’s possessions. If Lawrence can do that, they have a chance to be in the game late in the fourth quarter.

Olathe South at Shawnee Mission West
7 p.m. Friday at Shawnee Mission South District Stadium

Two of the last three Class 6A state champs meet in the first round of this year’s playoffs. South has had a good year with only two losses. The first came in overtime to an undefeated Olathe North and the last was 49-0 to a one-loss Blue Valley squad two weeks ago.

The Falcons are a solid team that has flown under the radar all season but now must answer the question if they are closer to the team that took North to the brink or the team that was never in the game with Blue Valley.

West had struggled to start the season but took advantage of its district to win its last three games and finish the regular season at 5-4. The Vikings have some nice parts, but the question will be have they turned the corner or was the winning streak fueled by a weak district?

Bonner Springs at St. Thomas Aquinas
7 p.m. Friday at St. Thomas Aquinas Stadium

This first round Class 5A matchup pits a team that may have played its best game of the season against another that is looking for answers after a loss.

Bonner Springs got into the postseason with a tough 13-0 win over St. James Academy. The game was a statement for a team that has been an offensive juggernaut for most of the season. The Braves can still score, but last week they showed they can win a game led by the defense.

The Saints were having a strong season with only losses to an undefeated Bishop Miege and a one-loss Blue Valley as blemishes on their record until last week. Aquinas fell to Pittsburg 31-21 in a game that got the Purple Dragons into the postseason but still kept the Saints as the district champ.

Aquinas lost the game but also lost standout running back James Cosentino in the fourth quarter. The Saints were able to get to within 24-21 in the game but that was it. Cosentino’s status is unknown, but if he is unable to play, it will be an adjustment for Aquinas.

The focus in the game will be on the defenses and their ability to stop the other team’s high-powered offense. The squad that does that should still be playing next week.