They’ll play to go to state for the first time since 2009. Houston football’s run has reached another level. The #7 ‘Canes (2-seed, 7-1) ran past two foes to make the Section 1 9-Man finals. A quarterfinal with L-O (7-seed, 2-6) was a little dicey. Houston jumped out 22-0 only for the Cards to tie the game at 22. Houston scored before the half (28-22) and after (36-22). L-O replied (36-28). Houston scored (44-28). L-O again replied. The conversion critically failed, keeping it a two-score game (44-34), where it remained. Houston prevailed 50-40. Joey Fishel (18-168, 3 TDs rushing) and Jaytin Millen (21-133, 4 TDs rushing) led a big double-H ground attack. Trey Hungerholt (22-30, 361 yards, 4 TDs passing, 18-167, 2 TDs rushing) was huge for the Cards. He hit Riley Olson (8-144 receiving), Carter Johnson (3-95 receiving), Chase Johnson (6-81 receiving), and Tanner Kasel for TDs. Houston won in September 54-14. Cody Hungerholt’s group then hosted GM (3-seed, 7-2) in the semis. The ‘Canes got two first quarter TDs for a 14-0 lead. Mikkel Schutte then authored a key 40-yard interception return TD for a 22-0 lead. GM got on the board; Evan Oelhke a 77-yard TD pass to Luke Speer. Houston answered just before half, a Ben Walters 38-yard TD run. Oehlke and Speer connected again (67 yards), but the Larks were critically held in the final ticks of the stanza. Houston led 28-6. In the second, GM started with an eight-play TD drive (28-14). They ran five more plays. Houston ran 35! The ‘Canes had two super long drives, a 14-play, 67-yarder (Fishel 14-yard TD run), and a 21-play, 61-yarder. The later produced no points, but milked over 10:00 off the fourth quarter clock. Houston controlled GM, final 36-14. Millen was the man (31-184, TD rushing), posting his ninth 100-yard game. Fishel (13-90, TD rushing) and Walters (14-78, TD rushing) got some. Schutte fell on an offensive fumble for his another TD. Oehlke (9-20, 204 yards, 2 TDs, 2 INTs passing) and Speer (4-162, TD receiving) did GMs damage. The #7 ‘Canes (9-1) will face #1 SG (1-seed, 10-0) for the Section title. Nine wins is Houston’s most since the 2008 state title year (14-0). Millen’s near 1,400 yards (17 total TDs, scored in every game) and Fishel is over 1,000.
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