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Central Plains makes playoffs in first year of existence
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It is the first year in existence for the Central Plains High School football team.
Last season, the Oilers were split in two — Quivira Heights and Claflin. Together, they have won the Eight-Man Division-I District 8 title, going undefeated at 6-0 in district play.
“We knew we had the right pieces to put together a good team this season,” Oilers head coach Chris Steiner said. “It could have been hard because we had a group of kids that were used to playing both sides of the ball for two or three years and now they are playing one position.
“Each of the kids have really responded well to it. They are playing for the team instead of for themselves.”
As far as making the playoffs in its first year, Steiner said that it helped the consolidation.
“I’m sure anybody that has ever consolidated would like to have the same start,” Steiner said. “Before we started the season, the administration looked at me and said no pressure. A good start in football would be great for the consolidation.
“I think it has really helped the two schools and the communities come together.”
Central Plains will host Quinter tonight at 7.
The Oilers’ (8-1 overall) only loss of the season came at the hands of Otis-Bison in Week 2.
Central Plains has been led by senior Benn Kirmer, a big-play running back that has raced for over 100 yards in all but two games this season, including one game that he was limited to four carries.
Kirmer’s biggest game was against Lincoln. He raced for 303 yards on 19 carries.
Quinter is 6-3 overall, and it averages 36.88 points per game while allowing 22.88 points per game.
The Bulldogs are on a two-game losing streak.
Like the Oilers, Quinter has a serious threat as a running back.
Logan Reed rushed for 1,286 yards and 21 touchdowns in the first eight games of the season.
“He’s actually their fullback,” Steiner said. “They run a lot of option out of the split back (formation), so their quarterback and their tailback also have a lot of yards.”
Quarterback Colton Corwin is the second-leading rusher with 704 yards and 13 scores.