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Huskies win first regional championship in 12 years, defeating Olathe South, 68-31

After a close first half, the Huskies shut down South's defense and scored 33 points in the third quarter.

November 5, 2021

Junior+running+back+Grant+Stubblefield+avoids+a+tackle+from+an+Olathe+South+defensive+player%2C+Nov.+5.+

Lindsey Farthing

Junior running back Grant Stubblefield avoids a tackle from an Olathe South defensive player, Nov. 5.

The Huskies were victorious in tonight’s regional championship game. Five different offensive players scored touchdowns for Northwest. On the defensive side, the Huskies held the Falcon’s scoreless for the entire third quarter, intercepted a pass for a touchback and recovered a fumble.  

Senior captain and quarterback Mikey Pauley said the team focused on not underestimating Olathe South and playing tough. Pauley added the offensive strategy was to run the ball. 

This strategy was apparent when junior running back Grant Stubblefield ran in the ball for a touchdown with 5:32 remaining in the first quarter. Stubblefield would go on to score four touchdowns for the Huskies. He credited the offensive line for his success. 

“My O-line played really well tonight; they made holes easy for me to read,” Stubblefield said. “It is pretty easy [to score] when they are blocking everybody downfield for you.” 

The Falcons answered quickly with a touchdown of their own with 3:25 remaining in the first quarter. Then, with 32 seconds left in the quarter, Pauley threw a touchdown pass to senior Nick Cusick to make the score at the end of the first quarter, 14-7.

Early in the second quarter, South scored a touchdown. The Huskies answered back with a rushing touchdown from Pauley. 

The back-and-forth continued as South scored a field goal with 4:35 left in the half. Stubblefield answered with a rushing touchdown with 1:27 remaining. The Falcons scored a touchdown right after, making the score going into halftime, 28-24.  

During halftime, senior captain and safety Zach Yates said the defense rallied to shut down Olathe South’s trick plays and help secure the win. 

“All they had done was throw trick plays at us,” Yates said. “We knew if we kept on doing our job, we could put this game out of reach.” 

Stubblefield agreed with Yates, saying the Huskies knew they were the better team but still needed to work hard to earn the win.

“We knew we were the better team and that if we did our job and played hard, we would win the game,” Stubblefield said. 

The Huskies came out of halftime ready to win. Stubblefield scored a rushing touchdown with 10:25 remaining, making the score, 35-24. 

Then, senior Gavin Biancalana recovered a fumble with 10:08 left in the third quarter. The Huskies capitalized off this, with Pauley scoring a rushing touchdown with 9:27 left in the quarter. 

Head coach Clint Rider said running the ball led to a lot of success for Northwest. 

“The run game was working. There was no sense in putting the ball in the air when you do not have to,” Rider said. 

Building on this momentum, Ridley intercepted the ball for a touchback with 6:36 remaining in the quarter. This would lead to Stubblefield scoring his final touchdown of the night with 5:48 left in the quarter. Ridley said he focused on doing his job and helping his team. 

“I just did my job and encouraged my teammates,” Ridley said. “In the first half, I did not play that well, but in the second half, everyone stepped up.” 

Pauley threw two touchdown passes this quarter, to seniors Max Muehlberger and Nick Cusick. At the end of the third quarter, the Huskies lead the Falcons, 61-24. 

Senior Josh Cusick ran in Northwest’s last touchdown of the night with 9:29 left in the game. South scored the final touchdown of the night with 1:25 left to play. The final score had the Huskies on top, 68-24. With the win, the Huskies secured the regional championship. Yates said winning tonight’s game was the first step the team needed to take to achieve their ultimate goal. 

“It has been 12 years since we won an actual trophy at Northwest, so it is a stepping stone,” Yates said. “We are two out of five right now; we have three more [games] left. The third one is our last goal.”  

Northwest will play Olathe North next Friday at the DAC. 

 

 

 

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