Wildcats Pull Away Late to Move on in the Playoffs

Jacob Janousek, Sports Editor

Photo by Taylor Hofbauer
On Friday, Oct. 26th, The Millard West Wildcats faced off against the Creighton Prep Junior Jays in an anticipated matchup in the first round of the State playoffs.

Last weeks the Wildcats were able to finish on a high note with a 49-10 win over Lincoln North Star as the Jays lost to Elkhorn South 21-20 finishing a tough season 5-4.

The Wildcats had the momentum coming in, but the Junior Jays were tough and stuck through it the whole way.

In the 1st quarter the teams seemed really even as they both had a few three and outs. The Wildcats were able to get onedrive going, getting down to first and goal, but ultimately finished with a 25 yard field goal.


The second quarter was definitely more exciting. Creighton Prep was able to strike first. with quarterback Reid Burke was able to find wide receiver Thomas Corpuz wide open in the endzone from 26 yards out on what looked to be some miscommunication on defense.

The Wildcats had to punt on the next possession. There were bailed out though as the Junior Jays muffed the punt around the 2 yard line and senior Gabe Anderson was able to recover and get in to score making it 10-7.

After this score on the kickoff the Junior Jays were able to return the kick for 78 yards and there were looking like they were going to score and take the lead. On third down QB Burke was just looking for something as he lobbed it in the endzone and was intercepted by senior Zach Merkley.

The Wildcats didn’t hesitate on the next possession. Just under two minutes after the interception junior quarterback Tristan Gomes found senior Garrett Kennedy for a 54 yard touchdown pass making in 17-7 going into halftime.

The second half started sour for the Cats as the Jays started off with a almost identical touchdown from their last as QB Burk found WR Corpuz from 32 yards out cutting the deficit to 17-14. Getting towards the end of the third quarter the Wildcats were putting on a long drive as they kept giving the rock to senior Jackson Wright who ended up finishing the game with 139 rushing yards.

Millard West was finally stopped on a third down at their 25 yard line. Coach Kirk Peterson knew a field goal would be good enough just going up by six where Prep could take the lead on a touchdown. He decided to go for it for fourth down, and it worked in the Wildcats favor. Gomes was able to find junior Dayls Beanum in the endzone for a 25 yard score that would put the Wildcats up by 10.

The fourth quarter was dominated by Millard West. The Jays got stopped early and gave the ball back to Millard West. The Wildcats were up to do a 75 yard touchdown drive that took almost eight minutes capped off by a six yard run from Gomes. Gomes had a strong game with passing for 162 yards, 70 yards rushing, and three total touchdowns.

Creighton Prep wasn’t able to do anything with the remaining 34 seconds on the clock as the Wildcats were able to pull away late and win 31-14.

The #5 Millard West Wildcats move on to face the the #4 Westside Warriors Friday, Nov. 2 as they go on the road and try to get another win against a tough Warriors team and move on to the Semifinals.