By Staff for

          MCPHERSON – On Thursday the McPherson Middle School seventh-grade football team hosted Derby at the Grant Complex Field and scored a decisive 44-6 victory.

          “The coaching staff is really proud of how our defense came out and set the tone for the game while continuing to dominate for all four quarters,” noted head coach Dustan Kanitz. “The defense ended up with three interceptions, two touchdowns, one safety, six sacks, nine tackles for a loss and two fumble recoveries.”

          Leading that defense was Graham Prescott who recorded a quarterback sack while also taking an interception back 42 yards for a touchdown. Tre Winburn also returned an interception 24 yards for a score while Isaac Nelson had the Junior Pups third interception.

          Issac Calhoone and Jaxon Hoover each recorded six tackles while Carter Melton had five. Among Calhoone’s tackles were three quarterback sacks plus he had one that went for a safety and gave McPherson two more points on the scoreboard. Nico Monday also had a pair of sacks with Drake Timson and Colt Harlin each had fumble recoveries.

          Talking about his offense, coach Kanitz added, “Our offense definitely took advantage of that momentum from the defense and made some big plays that led to four scoring drives.”

          As a group, the seventh-grade offense rang up 214 total yards with 134 of that coming on the ground and 80 through the air.

          Jaxon Hoover was the team leader of the offensive attack as he threw a pair of long scoring passes, one of 30 yards to Colt Chapman and the second of 52 yards to Nico Monday while also having part of a pair of two-point conversions.

          Both Nico Monday and Graham Prescott found the end zone a second time on touchdown runs of one and seven yards.

          Concluding his post-game reflections, coach Kanitz said, “It was great to see everyone on the roster play again tonight and watch some of those guys start to get more comfortable and contribute to the big win. We will now start to prepare for another home game next week.”

          The seventh-grade Junior Pups will be back at Grant Complex on Thursday, September 15 playing host to Salina South.

(The Staff covering McPherson County Activities can be reached by email at