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Area football preview: Oilers set to meet Gorillas in showdown
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It’s hard to imagine, but a Central Plains loss could actually be a good thing Friday night.
The loser of a titanic No. 2 Central Plains (6-1, 2-0) at No. 3 Solomon (7-0, 2-0) showdown avoids a probable Eight-Man I playoff game at No. 1 Spearville (7-0) until the third round of the playoffs. The district runner-up would likely play the second and third-round games at home. The top two District qualifiers advance to the eight-man playoffs.
Quarterback Braeden Crites completed five touchdown passes and scored on a 20-yard interception return and 24-yard run. He threw for 116 yards and rushed for 44 yards in a 52-6 victory over Ellinwood. Jacob Warnken, Clark Besthorn, Michael Ryan and Brady Rugan touchdown passes.
Since an opening loss 16-12 at Victoria, the Oilers have beaten teams by an average score of 61 to 4. Quarterback Braedan Crites has completed 47 of 90 passes for 737 yards with 15 touchdowns. Jacob Warnken has gained 284 rushing yards. The Oilers have 22 takeaways. Warnken has 71 tackles, while junior Trey Schulte and Michael Ryan each have eight tackles for loss. Ryan and Trustin Kreft each have six sacks.
Central Plains coach Chris Steiner captured his first eight-man title as a head coach last year. Solomon coach Steve Tiernan has guided Osborne and Baileyville to state titles. Central Plains owns four wins over Solomon, highlighted by a 56-52 win in 2012 when Solomon was 10-3.
The Solomon Gorillas are averaging 372 yards per game. Quarterback Jake Tiernan has completed 64 of 92 passes for 1,085 yards and 19 touchdowns. Kord Hilbert and Cain Fowles have 667 receiving yards and 13 receiving touchdowns combined.
Solomon has 17 takeaways and has yielded 9 ppg. Senior Blake Swenson has 40 tackles, and senior Zach Neilson has 10 tackles for loss.

Little River (5-2, 2-1) atEllinwood (4-3, 1-2)
A winning record is at stake for the Ellinwood Eagles against District foe Little River. Ellinwood quarterback Tyson Martinez completed a 21-yard touchdown pass to Kaleb Schartz against Central Plains.

Stering (4-3, 0-1) at Hoisington (7-0, 1-0)
Cameron Davis returned the opening kickoff 85 yards for a touchdown and fullback Hunter Hanzlick scored five touchdowns and rushed for 230 yards in a 46-0 victory over Ellsworth last week. Tyler Specht completed three passes for 116 yards and a touchdown pass to Steffan Dolechek. Lyons (2-5, 1-0) visits Ellsworth (4-3, 0-1) in the other District game.

Hugoton (3-4, 1-0) at Larned (3-4, 0-1)
Seven turnovesr offset more than 300 yards offense for Larned in a 21-0 loss to Holcomb,
Larned’s Landon Erway rushed for 115 yards and two touchdowns to spark a 244-yard rushing attack. Quarterback Evan Skelton rushed for a TD and completed TD passes to Isiah Perez and Tanner Galliart. Gary Barker and Max Easley scored TDs.

Otis-Bison (7-0, 2-0) at Northern Valley (3-4, 1-1)
Otis-Bison beat Beloit St. John’s-Tipton 46-36 last week. The Otis-Bison Cougars get a District 7 breather against Northern Valley with No. 1 ranked Victoria (7-0, 3-0) ahead next week.

Bucklin (1-4, 0-2) at Stafford (3-4, 1-1)
Stafford’s Phillip Gift scored three touchdowns, including a kickoff return, and Josh Harter scored three touchdowns, including a punt return, in Fairfield’s 50-0 victory over Fairfield. Laithen Shocklee and Adrian Flores also scored TDs. Caleb Hildebrand had nine tackles and an interception. Tanner Sipes and Adrian Flores had six tackles apiece. Ashland (5-2, 2-1) travels to Fairfield (0-7, 0-2).

Kiowa County (3-4, 2-1) at St. John (0-7, 0-3)
St. John’s Eddy Ibarra completed a touchdown pass to Keven Neri-Leon and Cashe McVey scored on a 26-yard touchdown in a 36-14 loss to Macksville last week. Neroi_leon had 85 yards in receptions.

South Central (6-1, 3-0) at Macksville (1-6, 1-2)
Macksville broke a two-year losing streak with a 36-14 victory over St. John. Quarterback Alan Ibarra rushed for 138 yards and three touchdowns and completed touchdown passes to Austin McCauley and Bryce Casper. The only wins over the past three football seasons for St. John and Macksville have been over Macksville and St. John. Kinsley (2-5, 2-1) plays at Skyline (1-6, 1-2).