Parsons traveled to Prairie View in week 10 of the 2018 season. Both teams were enjoying their most successful seasons since the 70’s.
40-plus year playoff droughts had ended the week before and neither senior class wanted that ride to end.
A lot was on the line. Parsons took the win and played one more game.
Now, Prairie View has a chance to even up the score.
Things are different in 2020. Parsons sits at 1-1, while Prairie View is a dominant 2-0. There is a lot less at stake. Only a couple players were on the field two years ago. Parsons has a new head coach.
Senior Ethan Houk is back for another season under center for the Vikes. He had a huge junior year, amassing over 2000 yards of total offense and 24 touchdowns, most of it through the air.
Most of his receivers have moved on, but every player who had a rushing yard has returned. That hasn’t deterred head coach Jeff Schibi from continuing to throw the ball.
The Vikes are averaging 279 yards passing and 69 yards rushing per game. Houk put up 379 yards and four tds passing in last weeks 25-20 win over Iola.
Four of the top five receivers from 2019 are gone. Most of the receiving damage has been done by senior Tanner Barcus. He caught seven passes for 149 yards and one touchdown against Anderson County in week one and followed that with 12 catches, 221 yards, and a pair of scores.
Nose guard Connor Baughman leads the defense with 3 1/2 tackles for loss, 10 tackles overall. 3 players have double-digit tackles on the season.
The young Buffaloes have continued to rely heavily on the ground game. Senior fullback Otis Jacobs and junior tailback Bodi Isenhower pace the team in rushing. After putting up just 145 yards as a team against Santa Fe Trail in week one, Jacobs out-did that by himself against Osawatomie, going for 152 yards and a TD. Isenhower nearly reached the century mark as well with 85 rush yards and three tds on just a hand full of carries.
The passing game is finding its way and junior Zach Theis has emerged as the top weapon for junior quarterback Damien Kline.
Perhaps the biggest surprise so far has been the defense. Even after graduating four all-staters from last year’s squad and returning starter senior Chris Law yet to see the field, they have yet to give up a point and are only allowing around 150 yards per game.
Junior middle linebacker Colton McCammon tops the defense with 26 total tackles, including 18 last week, and an interception. Kyle Waterman provides great pressure from the interior.
Both teams have the capability to put up huge numbers offensively. The powerful Buffalo rushing attack can drain the clock while putting up points. They have several play makers in the backfield that can take it to the house from anywhere. But the Viking passing game can also put up points in a hurry. This game will not be over until the clock says zero.
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