The Mill Valley Jaguars and Bishop Carroll Golden Eagles combined for 49 points and 732 yards on Saturday in the Kansas Class 5A high school football state title game at Pittsburg State University’s Carnie Smith Stadium.
But the most important part of the afternoon’s story arguably occurred during the first eight minutes of the game.
In that whirlwind of action, Mill Valley scored three times. That flurry established the Jaguars’ presence and sparked them to a 21-0 lead that was a key in their 35-14 victory. The state title is Mill Valley’s first football state championship in the school’s 15-year history.
“That was huge. We wanted to come out really fast on them and really strong,” Mill Valley coach Joel Applebee said. “We did a great job offensively. We got off the ball well. Everybody up front did an outstanding job. That’s exactly how we wanted to start the game.”
Mill Valley’s electric start highlighted all facets of the Jaguars’ offense. The combination of mobile, accurate quarterback Logan Koch; fast and bruising running back Christian Jegen; a dominant offensive line and a talented receiving corps led by 6-foot-6 senior Lucas Krull was just too much for Bishop Carroll.
“It was all around,” said Krull, who had a spectacular diving catch on a 26-yard touchdown pass from Koch that gave Mill Valley a 14-0 lead. “Our line did a great job up front, our receivers did a great job catching the ball and Logan was doing what he does. Everyone did their job.”
That was nothing new for Mill Valley, which finished the season averaging 43 points per game. They scored fewer than 35 points just twice — in their lone loss of the season against Missouri Class 5 playoff team Staley and in a 27-20 victory over Kansas 6A state champion Derby.
“We have so many weapons,” Koch said. “We have a bunch of great receivers. Our O-line is a weapon. We’ve got running backs. We have so many options. It’s tough to stop us.”