Two Pick Sixes Doom Minneapolis in Playoffs

For the first time since 2002, Thomas More Prep has won a playoff game, and it came at the expense of the Minneapolis Lions.

Two defensive touchdowns fueled TMP in its 42-18 victory against Minneapolis at Lewis Field Stadium in Hays on Friday night in the first round of the 2A playoffs.

On each of Minneapolis’s first two offensive drives, TMP returned interceptions for touchdowns. The first was from Kenton Ginther, who batted the ball to himself and took it to the end zone midway through the first. Jace Wentling returned the second one on a similar tipped ball scenario just a few minutes later.

In the second quarter, the Monarchs added two touchdown passes from Kade Harris, a 57-yarder to Mark Rack and a 41-yarder to Wentling.

TMP (7-2) led 29-0 at the half, despite eight first-half penalties.

The Monarchs added another score in the third frame on an Andrew Schwartz 18-yard touchdown run to take a 36-0 advantage into the final quarter.

After a final TMP touchdown, Minneapolis was able to find the end zone three times in the final eight minutes. Jonathan Lowe caught two touchdowns, one from Hueser and the other from Braylon Smith. Hueser also raced for a 29-yard rushing score in the final seconds of the game.

TMP will go on the road next week to face Hoisington in the second round. Minneapolis ends its season with a 4-5 record and a first-round playoff exit for the third-straight year.

The Lions will also graduate 13 seniors, who were the majority of starters on both sides of the ball.

Braylon Smith was named the Nex-Tech Wireless Player of the Game. Smith’s passing touchdown on a trick play is what got Minneapolis its first score of the night.

Reese Wilson had the H&R Block of the Game. Wilson did a great job along the offensive line all season.