Senior defensive end Trey Mittelstedt (58) celebrates after a clutch sack on Omaha North junior quarterback Sebastion Circo. Mettelstedt, and the entire Wildcat defense held Circo to just 135 passing yards, and the rest of the Viking offense to 97 rushing yards. “I knew the pressure would eventually get there,” Mettelstedt said. “We are very talented up front, so as long as we followed through, we would hit home and make those plays.”
Senior defensive end Trey Mittelstedt (58) celebrates after a clutch sack on Omaha North junior quarterback Sebastion Circo. Mettelstedt, and the entire Wildcat defense held Circo to just 135 passing yards, and the rest of the Viking offense to 97 rushing yards. “I knew the pressure would eventually get there,” Mettelstedt said. “We are very talented up front, so as long as we followed through, we would hit home and make those plays.”
Logan Moseley

Wildcats stun Vikings

Senior drills 45 yarder to take down Top 10 team

Following Millard West’s Week one loss to rival Millard South, 28-27, the team had arguably a tougher task in facing the established Omaha North Vikings at Nile Kinnick Stadium at Omaha Northwest High School.

The big storyline in the teams season opening loss was the defense and special teams, as multiple players on the defensive line and secondary were sidelined due to cramping, caused by dehydration and the excessive heat. On the other hand, the offense shined around senior running back Bobby Joseph and his three touchdown day. 

Omaha North solidified themselves as a team to beat in the state in their week one matchup between the Bellevue West Thunderbirds, a team that has three future Huskers in quarterback Danny Kaelin and wide receivers Isaiah McMorris and Daevonn Hall, all of which are four star prospects. Omaha North’s defense, led by junior defensive lineman and future Husker himself Tyson Terry, made quick work of the T-Birds, holding their vaunted passing attack to 185 yards on the air, and just one touchdown going to Hall in the second quarter.

Millard West came into the game as heavy underdogs, the Viking defense would be tough to break through, and led by three star junior quarterback Sebastion Circo, the offense would find ways to pick apart the Wildcats defensively.

Things started off slow in the first quarter for both teams, as the defenses held strong. Millard West’s key to stopping the explosive Terry on defense was the double team, and it worked, as senior quarterback Brody Peterson had open pockets to throw in for most of the night, however a delayed blitz would sometimes hit home. Peterson would have just enough time to find his main receiver Jackson Williams for a 15 yard gain. The Viking’s defense would force a stop, and senior kicker Cameron Spicer would trot out and hit the chip-shot field goal to put the Cats up 3-0 in the first. 

“We knew this game would be a dog-fight,” Peterson said. “It was going to be a tough game that would take all four quarters to win, but as long as we stuck to what we were good at offensively, and let the defense do their job, I knew we would be able to pull away and win it.”

Things looked good heading into the second quarter, but around halfway through, Circo would show off his talent and hit his receiver in stride to put the Vikings in the red zone. Circo would then punch it in for six three plays later, but an offsides penalty negated the touchdown, and the Vikings would settle for three themselves. 

“It was hard to not get upset when some calls weren’t going my way,” senior defensive end Trey Mittelstedt said. “I’m used to it though. It’s hard for guys to stop me when I hit my stride, but I know to keep my cool, and eventually, those calls will come my way.”

Mittelstedt, and most of the front seven, were held in check for most of the first half and a good chunk in the third, however a touchdown punched in by senior running back Messiah Strong gave the Vikings a 9-3 lead early in the third, following the missed PAT. 

This became the perfect opportunity for Williams to enter the fray. After being held in check week one against the Patriots, and having one of the worst games of his career, he bounced back nicely, getting the Wildcats their first touchdown on the night with a 34 yard snag off the top of the defender. Spicer would once again struggle with the PAT, and he missed it, leaving the score tied at nine at the half. 

Following the break, Millard West would get to start off with the ball, but both teams exchanged scoreless drives. Circo once again showed off his arm with a flashy touchdown in triple coverage to junior wideout Connor O’Neill, to put the Vikings up by a score.

Prior and following the score, the Wildcats fumbled off of junior running back Jake Blackman in the kickoff department, and a miscue offensively that led to the Circo touchdown pass. Millard West would respond, however, as they marched down the field, and scored off the QB keeper from Peterson. 

Tied at 16 a piece, all the momentum was with the Vikings, until, that was, the Wildcat defense once again forced a stop, and gave the offense 60 seconds to drive down the field. Spicer, a Kohls rated four star kicker, hadn’t hit past 30 in a live game, but is noted to have hit as far as 50+ in practice. 

From the sights and sounds on the sidelines, the coaches and players got set on the overtime mindset. Peterson led the offense to the Viking 40 with around seven seconds left. It would be a 50-yarder for Spicer, by far the longest of his career. But before he could even plant his leg, Omaha North called two time outs to try and ice him. The problem was, they got into their own heads, as an edge rusher jumped offsides, giving the Wildcats a little extra breathing room. The potential game winner would be from 45 yards away.

“When I saw the ball get snapped, I saw Parker [Dunn] hold the laces out,” Spicer said. I can get in my head sometimes, and seeing that in the moment did not help. “But I knew what needed to get done, so I brushed off last week and the miss from before and finished the job.”

Spicer nailed it, and hit a near perfect kick right down the middle. The Wildcats had their first lead since early in the first quarter. But with two seconds left, there was still a chance for a Viking miracle. Spicer kicked the squib right down the middle, meaning all that was left to seal the deal was to get the tackle. After the lateral game, the ball popped out and the Vikings recovered with no time left. Millard West took down a top three team, and did so in commanding fashion.

“I had told him [Peterson] that it was time we won one,” senior tight end Dale Hansen said. “We are all tired of losing these games. We are all tired of losing these close games, so to finish it out and win one against a tough team felt good.”

Millard West hopes to continue their momentum into their week three matchup against the 0-2 Burke Bulldogs, then follow that game up with another potential top ten showdown against the Creighton Prep Jr. Jays.  Both these games are home games and can be watched on https://striv.tv/channel/millard-west/

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About the Contributor
Logan Moseley, Staff Reporter
This is Logan’s senior year and 4th year on staff. Last year he was the MWHS Wildcat News Broadcast Editor In Chief, Striv Executive Producer and one of the piloting students of the “High School Radio Project.” Moseley won 1st place in the NSAA Class A News Broadcast category, and placed in the Broadcast Feature category as well. Moseley worked with the President of the Nebraska Broadcasters Association, Jim Timm, on the HSRP, worked for the Corn Belt baseball summer league live streaming service, and was a PA for Millard North Legion Baseball. Moseley is a fan of the Los Angeles Rams and Nebraska Cornhuskers.

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    Allyn BergmanSep 7, 2023 at 11:58 am

    As a Grandpa of Trey Mittelstedt I can say it was a great game. A terrific game. I was horse the next day I could hardly talk. Wait a go Millard West Wildcats. I will be cheering just as loud at the next game. Let’s go cats.

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