Lights out at Hubbard?
I have got to start going to bed earlier than I have. I slept too late again today. I also didn’t help myself by stuffing my face. It came back to haunt me just before noon.
Regardless, I’m back in Smith Center for what more than likely will be the final football game at Hubbard Stadium this season. The Redmen must defeat Bennington to keep their playoff hopes alive, but that’s only half the story.
Smith Center, which has lost to Ell-Saline and LaCrosse in the last two weeks, although the latter was a non-district game, also has to defeat Phillipsburg Thursday to make the postseason for the 12th consecutive season. The week six boo-boo in Brookville, a game in which Ell-Saline gained a meager 64 yards, has put the Redmen squarely behind the 8-ball.
The Redmen’s current playoff run began in 2003. It includes five consecutive Class 2-1A state championships between 2004 and 2008, and 29 of the 79 victories in Kansas’ longest high school football winning streak.
It used to be much harder to make the playoffs. From 1981, the year the Kansas State High School Activities Association introduced district football, through 2001, only the district champion reached the postseason. There were a few seasons where 8-1 Smith Center teams sat home because the loss came in the wrong game.
1983 is a good example. The Redmen won the 1982 state title and were undefeated going into their final game of the season. but they lost to Osborne and that was it. The Bulldogs went on to win the 3A state championship, so no shame in that.
The Royals and Giants play game three of the World Series at 7:07 CT tonight. Smith Center principal Greg Koelsch and athletic director Greg Hobelmann are already looking for ways to get updates on the game. I have the MLB At-Bat app on my iPhone.
Speaking of my iPhone…I may have bit off more than I can chew.