Platte County wins battle with Harrisonville

By Cole Young PrepsKC Senior Writer
Posted: September 9, 2017 - 12:39 AM


Michael Smith had one goal on the final play of Platte County’s game against Harrisonville – get in the backfield and cause some havoc.

With the Pirates clinging to a 20-12 lead with 1.8 seconds left, Smith, a 6-foot, 235-pound defensive end, fired off the line sacking Harrisonville quarterback Ryan Byrd to the Wildcats’ comeback hopes.

“The only thing I was trying to do was hurry up and get off the ball and hurry up and get there to make the play,” Smith said.

The 20-12 victory was redeeming for Platte County after dropping a 62-27 game last week to Staley. Instead, the Pirates went on the road in a battle of top 10 Class 4 schools.

“We had to step up this week,” Smith said. “We were down against Staley. This week was about getting better and making better choices and doing our responsibilities.”

The two teams both started off slow Friday with neither able to move the ball much at all until Harrisonville jumped on the board first with 5:32 left in the first quarter when Joe Bowers scored on a 11-yard run to go ahead 6-0.

Platte County answered before the half when Kobe Cumming scored on a six-yard run to give the Pirates a 7-6 halftime lead.

In the second half, the Pirates who had been reliant on the pass for much of the year, turned more toward the running game and it paid off in a big way.

Four plays into the second half, quarterback Tanner Clarkson scored on a six-yard run to put the Pirates up 14-6.

“I did think we were playing a little on our heels in the first half trying not to make a mistake,” Platte County head coach Bill Utz said. “I challenged them at halftime to go out and make a play. You could tell they were a little more relaxed in the second half.”

The Pirates tacked on two field goals from Parker Lacina as well.

The one second half hiccup the Pirates had they paid for.

Midway through the fourth quarter the Pirates fumbled deep in their own territory. It took Harrisonville just one play for Wyatt Reynolds to score on a four-yard option run.

The Wildcats final chance to tie the game when they took possession with 80 yards to go in 20 seconds. They were able to make it to the opposite 20 before Smith came through with the game-finishing sack.

The loss dropped Harrisonville to 2-2.

For Harrisonville head coach Brent Maxwell though, it certainly wasn’t a loss to be embarrassed about.

“They are a good football team,” Maxwell said. “Hats off to them they took advantage of some of our mistakes and part of that is because of things they were doing. They are going to win some football games. I hope we are in a position to maybe face them again because they are going to be there.”

Platte County improved to 3-1.