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Northwest defeats JC Harmon, 62-0, in first round of playoffs
The varsity football team defeated the JC Harmon Hawks, 62-0, in their first-round playoff game, Oct. 29. With the win, the Huskies advanced to take on Olathe South for the regional championship.
October 30, 2021
After finishing the regular season with a 21-0 victory over Blue Valley West, the Huskies clinched first place in the Eastern Kansas League and the number one seed in the KSHSAA 6A East playoff bracket. The Huskies took on the 16-seed, winless JC Harmon Hawks in the first round of the playoffs.
Northwest came out executing well on both sides of the ball as they built a 35-0 lead by the end of the first quarter.
On the third drive of the game, junior Grant Stubblefield surpassed 1,000 rushing yards on the season with a 23-yard rush. Stubblefield said the milestone had been a goal of his for a long time.
“It’s always been a goal of mine and it was really cool to make it happen. We can celebrate tonight, but then we’ve got to re-focus and get ready for a playoff push,” Stubblefield said.
The Huskies would score three more touchdowns in the second quarter and a fourth shortly after halftime to give them a 62-0 lead, which would be the final score of the game.
Head coach Clint Rider said he was thankful for the Hawks coming out to play and was impressed with their grit.
“We’re thankful that Harmon came over to play. Their kids showed grit by coming out. They could’ve just hung it up, so we’re thankful that those guys gutted it out tonight and gave us an opportunity to play and keep a normal schedule,” Rider said.
Apart from a few varsity starters who were given the week to rest, Rider said all players on varsity and JV and a select number of freshmen were able to get playing time.
“It was good for some of our senior guys who have been a part of the program for a long time to get in and get some playing time and even some of the younger kids and freshmen that got pulled up tonight. Everybody got in the game and got some Friday night experience under the lights. It’s a big difference from a Monday so it’s good for them,” Rider said.
Senior wide receiver Chris Scheibel was one non-starter who was able to get a good amount of playing time. Scheibel, who had a 33-yard reception over a Hawks’ defender, said it was a great feeling to play in a playoff game.
“It was awesome. We worked hard all off-season and to see it pay off there was great,” Scheibel said.
Stubblefield said it was great to see underclassmen running backs get in the game and find the endzone.
“It was really cool, especially seeing the guys in my unit score. I know it was very special for them because I know how I felt when I got carries as a freshman,” Stubblefield said.
The Huskies advanced in the playoffs and will face off against Olathe South next Friday. Rider said in the playoffs, no team can be overlooked so the team will have to work hard to prepare this week.
“They beat a really good team in Blue Valley North. It’s one-and-done in the playoffs so you don’t have the luxury of overlooking anybody,” Rider said. “They have a really shifty quarterback and defensively they fly to the football and have some real standout guys on that side. It’s going to be a challenge and we need to keep in mind that seedings don’t matter.”
Stubblefield said the Huskies will have to practice harder this week as they prepare to go out and compete for a regional championship.
“We have to practice a little bit harder than we have before because we didn’t play as much this week. We’re going to watch a lot of film and get locked-in to win a regional title,” Stubblefield said.
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