The first week of district play brings new hope to teams across Kansas and Sacred Heart was no different coming in to their first district showdown with top-ranked Smith Center.
Unfortunately for the Knights, they were no match for the powerful Smith Center rushing attacked, which racked up over 500 yards on the way to a 78-0 beat down win.
Sacred Heart–who was playing without their top offensive spark plug in Charlie Skidmore–was able to move the ball on the game’s opening drive. Led by clutch runs by Jacob Faerber and catches by tight end Blake Palen, the Knights marched the ball down the field to the Smith Center 25.
Unfortunately, turnovers knipped the Knights again tonight, as quarterback David Anderson would throw his first of three INTs on the night to squash any momentum Sacred Heart had earned.
Smith Center would score a TD on every possession they had tonight, starting out with a three-yard TD run by fullback Hesston Maxwell.
With the Sacred Heart offense sputtering, the Redmen would crank up the intensity of their offense, scoring on big home run plays the rest of the first half. Smith Center would score on runs of 22, 50 (three times) and 79.
Smith Center would also add on a 24-yard TD pass from quarterback Colton Hutchinson to his wide receiver Brett Meyer, while running back Jesse Staples had three TD runs.
Meanwhile, the Sacred Heart offense couldn’t get enough consistent offense to make a scoring threat.
Smith Center took a 48-0 lead in to halftime. The second half, the Redmen got to rest their starters by putting in all second-string players. Still, Smith Center was able to outscore Sacred Heart’s no. 2s 30-0 in mop-up time to coast to a 78-point victory.
Blake Palen led the way for Sacred Heart, with six catches for 37 yards.
With the loss, Sacred Heart (1-6, 0-1 district) has been shutout in back-t0-back games and now will likely have to win their next two games if they want to make the playoffs.
Smith Center (6-1, 1-0 district) has won their fifth-straight game since losing to Phillipsburg in week two of the season. The Redmen travel to an improving Republic County team next week.
Sacred Heart will have their final regular season home game next Friday as well as week two of district play, as the Knights host county rival and unbeaten, Ell-Saline.
The game between the Knights and Cardinals can be heard on both Rocking M Media stations, FM 104.9 and Real Country 101.7. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m.