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Bulldogs Are Football Champs Once Again

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Kearney High School beats Hillsboro R-3 68-28 to take 2023 state title

Kearney, Mo., December 4, 2023: Kearney High School’s football team finished the job.

Logan Minnick came to KHS pledging to lead the Bulldogs back to a state football championship when he took the head coaching position in 2022. His team entered this season with the motto, “#FINISH.”

The Bulldogs accomplished that mission in front of a huge crowd of supporters with a beautifully balanced approach on offense and defense during the 2023 Missouri State High School Activities Association Class 4 Championship game against Hillsboro R-3 School District on Saturday, Dec. 2 at the University of Missouri’s Memorial Stadium in Columbia. KHS finished with a 68-28 win and the state crown.

KHS found the endzone 10 times on 279 rushing yards and 229 passing. Quarterback Casey Rooney was a commodore on the field, with four passing touchdowns and no sacks. His top targets were Manny Linthacum with 96 receiving yards and two TDs on five catches, Cohen Jacobs with 47 yards and one TD on one catch and Bryce Page with 45 yards and one TD on two catches.

Cameron Emmons and Casey Rooney dominated the ground game, with 96 and 91 yards apiece. Cameron Emmons got four TDs. Corbin Emmons earned 60 rushing yards on seven carries.

The Bulldogs’ defense was just as dominant throughout the midday game. They demonstrated remarkable resistance in the red zone, shutting down Hillsboro on multiple drives. The defense was led by Theo Grace, who had three solo tackles and six assists. Grant Noland got five solo tackles and three assists. Jackson Helberg earned three solo tackles and five assists.

MORE GAME COVERAGE:

This marks the first state football title for KHS since 2015. The Bulldogs finished the season with a 13-2 record. Their only losses were early in the season against conference powerhouses Platte County R-3 and Smithville. KHS later defeated Smithville during a postseason rematch.

Kearney School District students and staff members will celebrate the KHS football team and coaches during a State Championship Victory Tour of Schools from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 7. They will also be honored by the Board of Education this winter.

LINK: MORE PHOTOS

GAME STATISTICS

Score by Quarters Score 
Kearney  13 21 13 21 68 
Hillsboro  14 28
Team Totals KEARNEY HILLSBO 
FIRST DOWNS 22 19 
   Rushing 13 
   Passing 12 
   Penalty 
NET YARDS RUSHING 279 168 
   Rushing Attempts 41 29 
   Average Per Rush 6.8 5.8 
   Rushing Touchdowns 
   Yards Gained Rushing 291 180 
   Yards Lost Rushing 12 12 
NET YARDS PASSING 229 320 
   Completions-Attempts-Int 11-14-0 13-24-2 
   Average Per Attempt 16.4 13.3 
   Average Per Completion 20.8 24.6 
   Passing Touchdowns 
TOTAL OFFENSE YARDS 508 488 
   Total offense plays 55 53 
   Average Gain Per Play 9.2 9.2 
Fumbles: Number-Lost 0-0 3-3 
Penalties: Number-Yards 4-46 7-44 
PUNTS-YARDS 0-0 1-36 
   Average Yards Per Punt 0.0 36.0 
   Net Yards Per Punt 0.0 36.0 
   Inside 20 
   50+ Yards 
   Touchbacks 
   Fair catch 
KICKOFFS-YARDS 11-508 5-164 
   Average Yards Per Kickoff 46.2 32.8 
   Net Yards Per Kickoff 32.6 20.2 
   Touchbacks 
Punt returns: Number-Yards-TD 0-0-0 0-0-0 
   Average Per Return 0.0 0.0 
Kickoff returns: Number-Yds-TD 5-63-0 11-149-0 
   Average Per Return 12.6 13.5 
Interceptions: Number-Yds-TD 2-4-0 0-0-0 
Fumble Returns: Number-Yds-TD 0-0-0 0-0-0 
Miscellaneous Yards 
Possession Time 24:47 23:13 
   1st Quarter 6:55 5:05 
   2nd Quarter 4:51 7:09 
   3rd Quarter 6:37 5:23 
   4th Quarter 6:24 5:36 
Third-Down Conversions 4 of 6 6 of 10 
Fourth-Down Conversions 0 of 1 0 of 2 
Red-Zone Scores-Chances 5-5 2-4 
   Touchdowns 5-5 2-4 
   Field goals 0-5 0-4 
Sacks By: Number-Yards 0-0 0-0 
PAT Kicks 8-9 4-4 
Field Goals 0-0 0-0
RUSHING No. Gain Loss Net TD Lg Avg. 
Cameron Emmons  20 96 93 21 4.7 
Casey Rooney  91 91 33 15.2 
Corbin Emmons  60 56 26 8.0 
Cohen Jacobs  22 22 11 5.5 
Manny Linthacum 21 21 21 21.0 
Kendahl Davis  1.0 
Kale Tucking  0.0 
Team  -5 -5.0 
Totals… 41 291 12 279 33 6.8 
PASSING Cmp-Att-Int Yds TD Long Sack 
Casey Rooney  11-13-0 229 47 
Bradley Doll  0-1-0 
Totals… 11-14-0 229 47 
RECEIVING No. Yds TD Lg 
Manny Linthacum 96 36 
Bryce Page  45 34 
Cohen Jacobs  47 47 
Corbin Emmons  20 20 
Cameron Emmons  12 12 
Grant Noland  
Totals… 11 229 47
KICKOFFS No. Yds TB OB Avg. 
Jacob Dillon  11 508 46.2
 Kearney  Solo Ast Total TFL/Yds FF FR-Yds Int-Yds BrUp Blkd Sack/Yds QBH 
34 Theodore Grace  0.5/1  .  .  .  
19 Grant Noland  .  .  1-0  .  
29 Jackson Helberg .  .  .  .  
66 Tyler Jarrett  1.5/8  1-0  .  .  
2  Daniel Stansbury 1.0/3  1-0  .  .  
13 Brock Colhour  .  .  .  .  
7  Cayden Harris  .  .  .  .  
48 Clayton Cowan  .  .  .  .  
47 Aiden Smith-Col 1.0/1  1-0  .  .  
12 Carson Shear  .  .  1-4  .  
6  Cameron Emmons  .  .  .  .  
55 Tyrus Smith  .  .  .  .  
28 Corbin Emmons  .  .  .  .  
5  Cohen Jacobs  .  .  .  .  
11 Bryson Morrison .  .  .  .  
22 Gavin Warren  .  .  .  .  
63 Trace Dunlap  .  .  .  .  
75 Dylan Byrne  .  .  .  .  
4  Bryce Page  .  .  .  .  .

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