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Missouri Recaps

By 810 Varsity, 11/11/23, 1:00AM CST


Grain Valley, Oak Park, Liberty North win district titles

Grain Valley 27, Platte County 25

For a half, Grain Valley almost felt like it was ready to hold the district trophy. Then the Eagles had to fight back to get that moment. 

The Eagles (10-1) built a 24-0 halftime lead over Platte County on Friday night, then rallied for a 27-25 win over the Pirates on Friday night. With the victory, Grain Valley won the Class 5 District 8 title.  

Platte County (9-3) scored all its points in the second half, as quarterback Rocco Marriott ran for a pair of scores and also threw a touchdown pass. 

His lone score through the air was an 11-yarder to Brayden Stevens, which got the Pirates on the board with 8:46 left in the third. Adam Gisler, who cracked the top 10 all-time in yards in a season for Platte County, got in the end zone on a 12-yard run with 6:57 to play. A fumble recovery by Trevor Hay set up that score. 

Marriott’s 1-yard run late in the third cut the Grain Valley lead down to 24-19 with 2:14 left. After a stop, Marriott’s 2-yard touchdown run helped Platte County storm all the way back and take a 25-24 lead with 8:42 to play. Marriott passed for 206 yards and ran for 51 yards in the effort.  

But Grain Valley mustered one scoring drive when it needed it, then Ben Drinkwater hit a 22-yard field goal with 4:42 left to flip the lead back to the Eagles – and for good. 

Grain Valley’s Ty Williams ripped off 272 yards and three touchdowns to continue his candidacy for Metro Player of the Year.  

Williams had an 8-yard score in the first quarter and touchdown runs of 18 and 79 yards in the second quarter. Drinkwater also had a 28-yard field goal in the first half. Up next for the Eagles is a road trip to Webb City to face the Cardinals (9-2) in the quarterfinals next week. 

Oak Park 17, Park Hill 14 

For the first time since 2001, Oak Park held a district trophy high in the playoffs. 

The Northmen secured a 17-14 win against Park Hill in the Class 6 District 8 final on Friday. 

A week after beating Staley for the first time, the Northmen beat Park Hill for the first time in recent years - 0-3 since 2009 vs the Trojans. 

The undefeated Northmen (11-0) will face Liberty North (10-1) in the Class 6 quarterfinals next week. 

Oak Park built a 10-0 lead against the Trojans (5-6) and held off a late rally by Park Hill. 

Matthew Solorio toed a field goal in the second quarter to break a scoreless tie. Quarterback Aiden Hinkle had a pair of touchdowns for the Northmen – the first late in the second made it 10-0 at the break. 

His second touchdown came at a pivotal point in the game. 

Park Hill cut the deficit to 10-7 on a touchdown run by Gavin Schaag – points off an interception thrown by Hinkle. Park Hill had the ball with a chance to take the lead after the Northmen missed a 27-yard field goal late in the third. 

Hinkle’s second touchdown run made it 17-7 in the fourth quarter and that provided the final points for the home team. 

Park Hill got a 7-yard touchdown run by Bryce Lisaka with 2 minutes left to pull within 17-14. The Trojans recovered the onsides kic, but Donovan Ross intercepted Schaag in the end zone to lock up the win. 

Liberty North 33, Liberty 10 

It was uncomfortable at times for the second-ranked Liberty North in the district championship against Liberty on Friday night.  

In the end, the Eagles ran up a 33-10 win and a spot in the Class 6 quarterfinals opposite unbeaten Oak Park.  

"Everybody's gotten better over the course of the year, so we knew it was going to be a tough game," North head coach Andy Lierman said. "We just wanted to come out and execute and do what we could to win the ball game."  

North held just a 7-3 halftime lead against its crosstown rival, but the margin turned into a 14-3 advantage after Jacorey Love's rushing score at 4:47 of the third. A pair of fourth-quarter field goals by Bleu Renfrow put the Eagles up by 17 late.  

Liberty (7-4) has had a flair for the dramatic this season and it looked like they may be up to their old tricks. Christian Kuchta, who finished with 187 passing yards, connected with Dominic Revels on a 50-yard bomb and had the Blue Jays within 20-10 with more than five minutes left to play. Liberty even recovered the ensuing onside kick, but North wasn't having it on this night.  

Athen Welcome came up with the interception and took it 75 yards to the house before North added another rushing touchdown with 3:20 to left, putting the game away for good.  

The Eagles and Northmen will play for a spot in the final four on Saturday, Nov. 18. 

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