Huskies win first playoff game in 11 years, defeat Lancers, 42-14

The boys varsity football team defeated Shawnee Mission East, 42-14, in the first round of the 6A Kansas playoffs.


Lola Shipman

Sophomore running back Grant Stubblefield runs the ball up the field. He finished the game with 140 yards and two touchdowns.

Jack Nitz and Jonny Isaacson

After touchdowns by sophomore Grant Stubblefield and juniors Steven Whitter and Mikey Pauley, the Huskies entered halftime with a 21-0 lead and control of the game. Pauley, who had 203 yards of total offense at halftime, said the first half success was a result of the team’s playmakers getting the ball often.

“Our mindset was just getting the ball to our athletes and letting them do work,” Pauley said.

The Huskies held the Lancers to zero points in the first half and head coach Clint Rider said this gave the offense short fields, allowing them to have multiple quick, touchdown drives.

“We did a great job executing on third downs and on plays that broke down, our guys ran around and made some good plays,” Rider said. “The O-Line was firing tonight which allowed us to get the ground game going which was big.”

Agreeing with Rider, Stubblefield attributed his 140 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns to the offensive line, which he said did an excellent job blocking.

“I love my O-Line. They did a good job tonight, they were moving and they’re going to keep that up going forward,” Stubblefield said.

The defense forced four turnovers on the night, one of which was an interception by junior Drew Kaufman which he returned for a touchdown with one second remaining in the third quarter.

“The pick-six felt good because we haven’t had a defensive touchdown all year,” Kaufman said. “Just at halftime we were saying we need to get [a defensive touchdown] and then we got one so it was a good feeling to have.”

Ending the game leading, 42-14, the Huskies won their first playoff game in 11 years. Going down as Rider’s first playoff win at Northwest, he said it was good to get one for the program and that they will continue to build on the success.

“It is good to get the monkey off your back and the school hasn’t had one in the last 11 years so it’s been a long time for our program and it’s just another step forward,” Rider said.

Playing the winner of Blue Valley vs Blue Valley West, both teams the Huskies have beat, Kaufman said he hopes they will get to take on the Tigers.

“I’d rather play Blue Valley because the media has all been saying [our win] was a fluke because they didn’t have this or that guy, so I would like to go prove it,” Kaufman said.