By William for


SALINA – The McPherson Middle School 8th grade football team finally got rid of the goose egg on the record as they earned their first victory of the season on Thursday on the road in Salina, doing it high fashion as they hammered Salina Lakewood 38-0!

“The game with Lakewood was our first win and a good game for us to learn a lot from,” noted eighth-grade Head Coach TJ Jackson. “This is a very talented group, but we hope they see the difference between weeks one and two versus this week in that they did their jobs better this week than the previous two weeks. Even in this game it is was glaringly obvious that we were physically better than Lakewood, but when we didn’t do our jobs it just didn’t go as well, even against a team less talented across the board.”

Jace Schriner had a huge day as he rushed for 115 yards on just nine carries while scoring touchdowns on runs of 46 and 12 yards in the process. Blaise Hoover guided the team from his quarterback positions and threw for 179 yards and three scores, two to Teegan Haines and one to Javyn Alexander. Hoover completed seven of his nine throws. Elijah Clarke covered another 50 yards on three carries while Gunnar Schumaker pulled in two passes for 33 yards.

Speaking of his offense, Coach Jackson continued by saying, “Our offensive line was more effective this week when they communicated, and the results were clearly a reflection of their work. We were able to run with several running backs, and able to have our best passing attack yet with our quarterback extending some plays. We had six receivers catch balls, three running backs get carries and our offensive line dominated when they got their assignments.”

Leading the defensive work was Elijah Clarke and Gavin Wedel who each scored a tackle for loss to go along with a combined seven solo tackles and eight assisted tackles. Also showing up big on the stat sheet was Javyn Alexander and Drew Waner who had four and six solo tackles respectively.

“Defensively our guys did better this week with maintaining their positions and making good decisions on angles,” added Coach Busse when talking about his defenders. “Our guys up front really lead the way as we had over a dozen tackles for loss by our interior defensive linemen and our defensive ends held down the perimeter nearly perfect. We would still like to see improvement from our linebackers and secondary reading the ball on pass plays, but their run fills and attack was strong today.”

Coach Busse concluded his coach reflections saying, “We made huge steps forward, but this is just one step toward their goal of finishing as league champs. We will have to play better in all areas if we want to win out, which is what it will take to win the league.”

Now 1-2 on the season, the eighth-grade football team will be back in action on Tuesday, September 24, when they travel south to tangle with Maize Middle School.



  • Jace Schriner scored on a 46-yard run
  • Teegan Haines scored on a 41-yard pass from Blaise Hoover
  • Teegan Haines scored on a 20-yard pass from Blaise Hoover
  • Javyn Alexander scored on a 28-yard pass from Blaise Hoover
  • Jace Schriner scored on a 12-yard run


Elijah Clarke had 5 solo tackles, 1 TFL, 3 assists

Gavin Wedel had 2 solo tackles, 1 TFL, 5 assists

Javyn Alexander had 4 solo tackles, 2 assists

Drew Waner had 6 solo tackles,


Rushing (Atts-Yds): Jace Schriner 9-115, 2 tds; Blaise Hoover 3-33, 3 2-pt. conversions; Kaden Harold 3-22; Elijah Clarke 3-50.

Passing (Comp-Atts-Yds): Blaise Hoover 7-9-179, 3 tds, 1 2-pt. conversion.

Receiving (Rec-Yds):  Drew Waner 1-10; Cory Muehler 1-11; Teegan Haines 2-61, 2 tds; Gunner Schumaker 2-33, 1 2-pt. conversion, Javyn Alexander 1-28, td; Leyton Witte 1-17.

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