St. Marys gearing up for tough Sub-State battle with Centralia

Published: Nov. 17, 2022 at 12:54 AM CST
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ST. MARYS, Kan. (WIBW) - Two small town teams are set to battle in what should be a dog fight come Friday in Class 1A

The Bears are home against 11-0 Centralia who just knocked off back-to-back state champs Olpe last week 8-7.

“Centralia is a great team, they have great traditions, they’re extremely tough kids and they’ve been doing this really well for a long time. They got a unique offense,” St. Marys head coach Kyle Schenk said.

St. Marys who stands at 9-2, they’re on an eight game win streak and have scored at least 25 in all eight games, reaching over 50 twice and over 60 twice.

“I think it’s all about our mentality, ever since summer we’ve just had this mentality we’ve been able to make it this far by having that one game at a time mentality,” Wide receiver Kason Gomez said.

The Bears have three title game appearances but have lost all three, the last one in 2006.

But this powerful group knows that they have a big challenge ahead of them and they must take no plays off.

“At this point in the year, there is no lead that’s safe and they’re going to fight until the echo of the last whistle and just like we are and that’s fully what we expect and we got to be ready to play all four quarters as hard as we can,” Schenk said.

“Centralia has won it as many times themselves so getting a win against a tough Centralia team would mean a lot and I think it would show the state that we’re legit,” Hurla said.

13 Sports asked Gomez what he’s looking forward to most on Friday and it was pretty simple.

“Just the opportunity to play another game. There is not very many teams that get to practice right now so we’re just thankful for that,” Gomez said.

Hurla is having a fantastic season under center for the Bears helping led them to 41 points per game while the defense is allowing just 13 points per game. He says if they’re able to make it to the state title, it would be special.

“I think it would mean a lot for our program and community. We’re already seeing the support from the community and it’s been all year. You see all the little kids coming out to the games and I think them seeing us succeed is going to push them to be great and keep pushing this program to be great,” Hurla said.

As far as what Hurla is looking forward to most on Friday, the 12th man, the fans.

“The stands are going to be packed and two small town teams going at it, it doesn’t get much better than that and it’s going to be a great game and it’s going to be a lot of fun,” Hurla said.

Schenk said this will be a challenge for his team but he’s proud of where his team has come and how the older players are leading by example and they’re getting better one game at a time.

Kick-off is set for 7:00 p.m. at St. Marys High School.