All but two are left

Two teams advance to the game of their high school career


Photo by NSAA

The Semi-Finals pave a way to Memorial Stadium for the state game.

Cody Bennett, Sports Director

Thousands gathered at Buell Stadium on Friday, Nov. 15th, for a double header of both semi-final games in Class A state. The best teams in the state left to battle it out for 48 minutes in order to advance to Memorial Stadium.

Due to the double header at the same stadium, the lower seed game, Millard South vs. Omaha Westside, started first at 4 p.m.. The energy of the students coming fresh out of school on a Friday night is unfathomable. 

Omaha Westside kicked off first for Millard South’s possession first. Quarterback TJ Urban and runningback Isaiah Harris are the X-factors in this game and have to step up and play this game like they have all season. Starting deep in their own territory, Millard South had trouble moving the ball with Isaiah so they moved to play action. TJ Urban on his own 20 yard line rolled out to the right and slung out a pass on the run, Westside linebackers were all over it and intercepted the ball on the second play of regulation. Westside took advantage of the turnover and scored 3 plays later making it 7-0 Westside.

Quarterback Cole Payton had a field day with Millard South’s defence, playing one of the best, if not the best game of this year. Payton and his offense got the ball back due to a quick stop by the defense and scored again, making it 14-0 in the first quarter. Westside wasn’t done yet, their defense really stepped up in the red zone. A designed quarterback draw left one linebacker against Urban, he ran right through him and towards the plane. Westside defenders swarmed him and right before Urban crossed the plane for a touchdown, a blunt hit from the back knocked the ball out of Urban’s hands and Westside recovered, the score remained 14-0.

Right after that fumble, Payton and his offense took the field once more and a QB draw allowed for a wide open hole for Payton to run thru. Payton blasted right through the safety’s coverage and took it to the house for a 93 yard touchdown run to make it 21-0 in the second quarter. Westside still wasn’t done in the first half. Payton faced a 4th and 2, just trying to get 2 yards, the offense called for another QB draw and Payton once again, blasted through the coverage and took it to the house making it 28-0 before the half.

Millard South came out of the half a brand new team. Two very quick scores from Urban and his offense made it 28-14 in the 4th quarter. Then to seal the deal, Westside kicked a 27 yard field goal to secure the win over Millard South, 31-14. Westside will play at Memorial Stadium on November 26th.

Millard West vs. Bellevue West is the game the season is riding on, the top two teams in the state did not compete in the regular season, but the game that reserves a spot in the state championship. Millard West’s triple option vs. the gunslinger, quarterback Nate Glanz.

A very cold night as the sun went down at Buell stadium as the teams took the field for the biggest game of the season. Halfway through the first quarter, Millard West, stuck deep into their own half, ran their trusty, triple-option. Bellevue West read it perfectly and hit Dan sullivan as he was receiving the pitch, and Bellevue West recovered the fumble at Millard West’s 19 yard line. One play was all it took and a HB Dive opened a big hole and Bell West went up 7-0. About 10 minutes of back and forth action, Nate Glantz hands the ball off to Jeyveon Ducker for another HB Dive and Bell West scores another touchdown. The point after snap was muffed and Bell West took it across the plane for the second time and scored a two point conversion making the score 15-0 in the second quarter.

Quarterback Tristan Gomes and his offense take it down the field a ways and score on an 80+ yard drive. Gomes punches a 1 yard run in for the touchdown making it 15-7 before the half. Gomes and the Wildcats had another chance to score 14 seconds before the half but stopped short. Backup kicker Jackson Newman kicks a 27 yard field goal to make it 15-10 at the half.

Right at the beginning of the second half, Ducker pushes through the handoff from Glantz and takes it 80 yards, the first play of the second half Bell West is up 22-10. 

After another long drive from the Wildcats, Gomes punches another QB Sneak in for a touchdown, Newman missing the extra point, making it 22-16 Bell West halfway through the 3rd quarter. Millard West getting the football right back, Gomes drops back in the pocket at Bell West’s 30 yard line and lays out a floater to Dalys Beanum for a 35 yard touchdown pass, Wildcats take the lead 23-22.

A very long pass from Glantz allows Bell West to retake the lead at the end of the third quarter, 29-23.

All hope was lost for Millard West until a spark of hope appeared with 31 seconds left in the game, Gomes aired out a Hail Mary pass ad it connected making the score 37-30. The season rested on the leg of Jackson Newman with the onside kick, sadly for Millard West, Bellevue West came up with the ball and Glantz kneed the ball. Final score: 37-30.

Bellevue West and Omaha Westside will play at Memorial Stadium on November 24th for the title of the best team in the state.