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Charlie's Inside Corner: Sept. 22
Lets take a look
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Three games in, we’re a third of the way through the regular season part of this high school football season.
Let’s take a look at where we are.
• Truly, the 63-27 loss to Wichita Northwest last Friday for the Black Panthers was not as puzzling as the week before’s 21-20 overtime loss to the Hays Indians. Northwest is too good, too big, too fast. They simply overpowered Great Bend. A Santa Fe Trail beatdown! Marcus Hicks, perhaps the No. 1 recruit in Kansas is the REAL DEAL! Not so Hays. Hays played well but still, the Panthers shoulda/coulda won. Sure, Hays continued to surprise by beating Liberal, but I am still thinking Great Bend should be looking at 2-1, not 1-2.
The offense has struggled in the two losses, but that’s not surprising as the Black Panthers are replacing some tremendous skill position players. Look for those wrinkles to decrease as this season progresses.
Friday is a key game in this football season for Great Bend. On the road, at Dodge City in a Western Athletic Conference game. The Red Demons are also 1-2 having defeated Wichita Southeast before getting blown away by a rejuvenated Wichita Heights team.
Look for coach Beck’s Black Panthers to rebound this week as Koy Brack and receiver Dalton Bieker exploit the Dodge City secondary.

• Just a few miles away, in Hoisington, the Cardinals (2-1) are showing little evidence of their demise predicted by some. After a puzzling one-touchdown win over Kingman, coach Zach Baird has got his Cardinal offense flying high once again and looks to be a factor in the playoffs once again. Ellinwood (1-2) gets a chance to reach .500 as Ness City comes to town. This has the makings of an excellent 8-man game. After two consecutive scoreless games the Eagles look to get off the ground.

• After a season-opening loss to Victoria the Central Plains Oilers got a big win last week, 36-12 over previously undefeated Otis-Bison. The Oilers (2-1) won’t be tested this week as they roll over Kinsley. Can Barton County’s teams all win this week? Looks like it is in the stars except for Hoisington whose game is cancelled with Washington County. The Cats are 0-3 on the season.

Where’s that third quarter?
For the third straight game the Larned Indians left their game in the dressing room at halftime! Something about that halftime break causes the Indians to lose their MOJO while taking a break after frenetic first halves of action.
Larned has not produced a score in the third quarter in their three games. Worse yet, they have scored only one touchdown in each of its three games. That has directly led to two losses in closely-played games that could have gone the other way against Pratt and Hesston.
The halftime score showed Pratt 42, Larned 39. The Indians would finish with 46 points. In game two against Smoky Valley Larned led 21-14 at halftime but could tack on only one second half touchdown but held on for a 28-14 win. Last week against Hesston, a first-half shootout produced a 35-28 lead for the Swathers but the Indians would not score in the third quarter once again and only tallied one second-half touchdown as they fell 56-35 in a game that was much closer than the final score indicated.
What’s happening at halftime? Too much water? Too few adjustments? Coincidence? Conditioning? Should they just forego the halftime break and stay on the field and practice?
Whatever it is the Indians need to get it fixed in a hurry as they travel to Halstead to take on the perennially tough Dragons.
Score in the third quarter and the Indians even their season record at 2-2.

Buddy Tabler is a guest columnist for the Great Bend Tribune and his views don’t necessarily reflect those of the paper. He can be reached at