BY JIM MISUNAS
SPEARVILLE — The Central Plains Oilers were one play away from beating No. 1 ranked football powerhouse Spearville.
But the Spearville Royal Lancers ruined the championship dreams for the Central Plains football team for the third straight year.
Waylon Strecker converted a 8-yard touchdown pass from Kolby Stein with one second left for a 32-28 victory over Central Plains in the Eight-Man 1 quarterfinals.
“It’s really a shame anybody had to lose that game,” said Spearville coach Matt Fowler.
The Royal Lancers lined up Strecker behind blockers Bailey Sites, Carson Rich and Alex Fisher. The Oilers defended with three players with Oiler Alex Barton lined up five yards in the endzone. Strecker followed the blockers for the game-winning score.
The Royal Lancers have swept the last three playoff meetings after Central Plains won 42-40 en route to the 2014 Eight-Man I state title.
Spearville (11-0) plays Hoxie (10-1) while the Oilers finish 9-2 with three consecutive playoff losses to the Royal Lancers.
Alex Hickel’s 10-yard touchdown gave the Oilers a 26-26 tie and Myles Menges converted the 2-pointer for a 28-26 lead with 1:02 left in the game. The Oilers rolled upfield with perfect offensive execution on its four scoring drives.
“We knew it was coming,” said Central Plains coach Chris Steiner. “We had the blitz on right there, what we’d worked all week on it. The blitz guy got pinched inside. We were worried about Stein just running sweep away from it.”
The Royal Lancers converted a 4th-and-7 and rolled 65 yards. Bailey Sites caught a 14-yard pass. Alex Fisher caught a 24-yard pass and Sites followed with a 20-yard reception for a first down at the 7-yard line.
The game swung back and forth after Myles Menges scored on a 9-yard touchdown. Sites returned a kickoff 78 yards and scored on a 1-yard run. Sites added a 53-yard scoring dash for a 14-6 lead.
Hickel scored on an 11-yard run and Dalton Beck scored on a 6-yard touchdown for a 20-14 Oiler lead.
Sites answered with a 23-yard touchdown and followed with a 32-yard touchdown for a 26-20 lead with 5:58 left in the game.
Barton led the Oilers with 22 tackles. Dylan Lemieux had 10 tackles, one for a loss.
LANCERS 32, OILERS 28
Central Plains 6 6 8 8 — 28
Spearville 8 6 6 12 — 32
CP—Myles Menges 9 run (run fails), 1:19
S—Bailey Sites 1 run (Kolby Stein run), 0:59
S—Sites 53 run (pass fails), 9:29
CP—Alex Hickel 12 run (pass fails), 5:07
CP—Dalton Beck 6 run, (Alex Barton pass from Menges), 7:06
S—Sites 23 run (pass fails), 5:00
S—Sites 32 run (run fails), 5:58
CP—Hickel 10 run (Menges run), 1:02
S—Waylon Strecker 8 pass from Stein (pass fails), 0:01
RUSHING—CP—49-177; Hickel 22-104; Dalton Beck 14-46; Menges 10-24; Dylan Lemieux 2-6; Brett Liebl 1-(-3); S—39-244; Sites 20-178; Kolby Stein 14-57; Strecker 1-12; Levi Stein 1-0; Fisher 3-(-3)
PASSING—CP—Menges 6-10-0, 80; S—Kolby Stein 6-10-0, 86; Cole Stephenson 1-1-0, 8; Strecker 0-1-0.
RECEIVING—CP—Brett Liebl 3-39; Dalton Beck 1-29; Alex Barton 1-10; Hickel 1-2; S—Sites 4-53; Fisher 1-24; Strecker 1-8; Carson Rich 1-9.