Chieftains end Mill Valley’s perfect season
Committing eight turnovers usually spells doom for any team and can lead to a romp for the opponent.
That had to make Tonganoxie's 12-6 loss to undefeated Mill Valley even tougher. The Chieftains fell behind early 6-0 after a fumble but contained Mill Valley defensively until the fourth quarter when John Gooden broke free for a 21-yard touchdown run. Tonganoxie fought back with a James Hartshorn 1-yard run and had another chance late, but the Chieftains couldn't muster a homecoming win in the first meeting between the two schools.
Aside from the turnovers, the teams put up similar numbers. Both run-oriented squads, Tonganoxie had 143 yards on 40 carries. Mill Valley registered 165 yards on 48 carries. Tonganoxie put the ball in the air 14 times, completing five of them for 66 yards. Mill Valley passed just nine times twice in the second half for 55 yards.
When Mill Valley did pass, the Chieftains were usually there to knock down a pass, especially senior safety Troy Morando, who said his team knew coming in that the Jaguars also liked to stay on the ground.
Mill Valley (6-0 overall and 6-0 in the Kaw Valley League) used two long returns by sophomore David Woods, one on a kickoff and another on a punt, to cause more problems for Tonganoxie.
And when the Jags rarely coughed up the football, Tonganoxie turned it over moments later.
Mill Valley opens district play Friday at Bishop Ward. The Cyclones are 5-1 and Huron League champions.
The top two teams from each district advance to the playoffs.