PRATT—It was a first half shootout of near epic proportions here Friday night as the offenses of both Pratt and Larned were in high gear as they blazed their way to a 42-39 halftime score with the Greenbacks holding a slim 3-point advantage that they made hold up for a 56-46 Central Kansas League victory Friday night.
It was an offensive show by both teams and produced near record-setting piles of statistics. Pratt posted 29 first downs with 57 rushes for a staggering 546 yards rushing, 378 of them by Theis on 34 carries. The Greenbacks completed only one pass for 56 yards.
Larned would counter with 20 first downs, 244 yards rushing and 220 yards passing. Anthony McConnell posted 18 carries for 110 yards. He was backed up by Wes Davis with 10 carries for 92 yards. Quarterback Carson Smith completed 11 of 17 passes for 220 yards. His favorite target was DaMontay Phillips who had 4 receptions for 120 yards while Shevin Martin had 3 catches for 53 yards.
On the first play of the game, Pratt’s Travis Theis raced 80 yards for a score to set the tone for a wild first half. The ensuing kickoff was returned 90 yards for a touchdown by Larned’s Anthony McConnell. 36 seconds had ticked off of the clock and there were two scores. The rest of the first half would be played pretty much that way as both teams punched and counterpunched.
That 3-point difference at halftime was caused by two missed conversion kicks by Larned and a failed attempt at a two-point conversion run. Pratt’s Travis Theis—the Greenback’s Mr. Do Everything, was a perfect six-for-six on conversion kicks in the first half. Theis also rushed for a remarkable 313 yards by halftime.
With 42 seconds remaining before halftime, Pratt’s Theis rambled into the end zone from 22 yards out and Pratt led 42-33. Larned , however, answered back with a smartly executed drive behind the passing of quarterback Carson Smith. Smith completed a 15-yard pass to Brock Skelton to the one-yard line with three seconds remaining and on the last play of the first half Anthony McConnell pounded in a touchdown, resulting in the 42-39 score that left fans of both teams shaking their heads in amazement!
The two teams put up only three more scores but two of them would be by Pratt as they outscored Larned 14-7. Still, with 2:28 remaining Larned had closed within 56-46 and was threatening to score.
But Carson Smith’s pass into the end zone was tipped away and intercepted, ending the last bid by the Indians.
It was not a night for the defenses but, in the end, a couple of third quarter stops by the beleaguered Pratt defense ended up being the difference in the ball game. Pratt, the reigning 4A-II State Champions move to 1-0 on the season and in Central Kansas League play while dark horse Larned falls to 0-1.
Pratt travels to Haven Friday for another CKL contest while Larned entertains Smoky Valley for a Homecoming game.
PRATT 56, LARNED 46
Larned 14 25 0 7 — 46
Pratt 21 21 0 14 — 56
P--Travis Theis 80 run (Theis kick); L--Anthony McConnell 100 Kickoff Return (Logan Demond kick); P--Kaden Evert 56 Pass from Theis (Theis kick); L-- McConnell 34 run (Demond kick); P—Theis 19 run (Theis kick); P—Theis 24 run (Theis kick); L—Damontay Phillips 69 Pass from Carson Smith (Demond kick); P—Theis 5 run (Theis kick); L--Wes Davis 57 run; L--Shevin Martin Pass from Smith; P—Theis 25 run (Theis kick); L--Davis 1 run; P--Kadence Riner 1 run (Theis kick); P—Theis 3 run (Theis kick); L—Smith 4 run (Demond kick)
RUSHING—Larned 38-244; McConnell 18-110; Davis 10-92; Mason Burris 3-14; Phillips 3-12; Smith 2-7; Martin 1-3; Pratt 57-546; Theis 34-378; Landen Studer 9-77; Riner 6-64; Caden Blankenship 8-27.
PASSING—Larned—Smith 11-16-2, 220; Phillips 0-1-0; Pratt—Theis 1-1-0, 56
RECEIVING—Larned—Phillips 4-120; Martin 3-53; Mason Perez 2-30; McConnell 2-17; Pratt—Kaden Evert 1-56.