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All-Area 2014: Delton tabbed top offensive player -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

All-Area 2014: Green a load on defense for Norton -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

All-area 2014: Oberle tabbed top coach -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

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Monarch boys pick up second win -- girls roll -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

2014 HDN All-Area Super 11 capsules -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

MCL Round Robin wraps up at WaKeeney -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

Jayhawks pull away from Lafayette, win 96-69 -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

HHS wrestling competes at Ellsworth -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

Tiger women top Bearcats; men fall in overtime -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

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Wildcats back on track, beat Texas A&M -12/21/2014, 9:50 PM

Hays High's Dale continues winning ways -12/19/2014, 10:57 AM

Page continues hot streak for Tiger wrestling -12/19/2014, 10:16 AM

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Top stories 2014: Tebo gets his gold -12/19/2014, 10:26 AM

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KSU expects more than 10,000 fans -12/18/2014, 11:32 AM

Indians swimmers compete at Manhattan -12/18/2014, 11:32 AM

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Top stories 2014: FHSU football continues steady climb -12/17/2014, 10:20 AM

Lehman's triple-double leads FHSU to eighth straight win -12/17/2014, 10:20 AM

Dome hits game-winner for Victoria boys; TMP girls roll -12/17/2014, 10:19 AM

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Royals land Rios -12/16/2014, 9:27 AM

KU, Mizzou express interest in Ojeleye -12/16/2014, 9:27 AM

Kansas State DT Clinkscales faces additional charge -12/16/2014, 9:27 AM

No WR touchdowns? No problem -12/16/2014, 9:27 AM

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Heisman winner Mariota can't wait to get back on field -12/15/2014, 10:15 AM

Kansas State picks up win -12/15/2014, 10:15 AM

FHSU wrestling fifth at Newman -12/15/2014, 10:15 AM

Pair of double-doubles lead Tiger women -12/15/2014, 11:01 AM

Chiefs go long, handle Raiders -12/15/2014, 10:14 AM

Kobe Bryant passes Michael Jordan on NBA scoring list -12/15/2014, 10:14 AM

Patriots, Broncos clinch -12/15/2014, 10:14 AM

Prep basketball scores, Dec. 13 -12/14/2014, 10:04 AM

Sports Scores

Tuesday

Prep basketball

Boys

Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

Click To View All


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Game of the Week: Players change position for Wallace County

Published on -9/12/2013, 10:22 AM

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By CONOR NICHOLL

cnicholl@dailynews.net

The Wallace High School football team has seven seniors. Six have played more than one season and all half-dozen have the "C" denoted for captain on the online roster.

However, lineman Tyrell Springsteel is the only one of those six who has never earned all-league honors. Springsteel is also the lone captain who wasn't a returning starter.

But Springsteel put in a lot of weight room work in the summer mornings and now starts at defensive end. Before the season started, coach Kevin Ayers said he expected Springsteel to make "big contributions" in 2013.

"Work your butt off," Springsteel said.

Springsteel was one of several position changes for the Wildcats, ranked No. 4 in Eight-Man, Division II in the statewide media poll, in a season-opening 51-0 victory against Dighton.

The game was called at halftime because of the 45-point mercy rule. Springsteel had just 16 tackles in his career, but collected a career-high eight last Friday.

"I know I had something to prove," Springsteel said.

Because of Springsteel starting, senior Callahan Grund -- who collected 50 tackles and 5.5 sacks, second-best on the team in 2012 -- moved out to cornerback. Springsteel also played some at nose guard to spell senior Dalton Walker and then Grund had some snaps at end.

"Still trying to find that best fit defensively, but we were very pleased with his play at defensive end," Ayers said.

The change helped Wallace County force five turnovers and finish plus-four in turnover margin, an area that Ayers stressed during fall camp. Wallace County, the classification's No. 1 scoring defense last season, held Dighton to 41 yards.

The Hornets had never scored fewer than 14 points since it ended a co-operative agreement with Ness City after the '09 season.

"He has just been a kid that has just constantly worked, constantly learned, tried to do what is right," Ayers said of Springsteel. "We have really seen him come into his own physically over this last year. A lot of this is from extremely hard work and want to get out there and contribute to our football team, and I couldn't have been more pleased on Friday night."

As well, senior Kyle Gfeller, an all-league tailback last season, started at quarterback after four-year starter Gavin Mote graduated.

"Very big role to fill," Gfeller said. "Just tried to do my best."

Gfeller had completed 12 of 23 passes for 178 yards with a 3/0 TD/INT ratio before last Friday, but called the start "very nerve-wracking," because he hadn't taken many snaps.

He completed 2 of 4 passes for 22 yards with a TD and rushed 10 times for 56 yards and two scores.

"He had an extremely good summer," Ayers said. "I thought he ran the offense well."

"Have to be smart," Gfeller added.

Defensively, Gfeller picked off two passes and now has six in his career, at safety.

"Some of them came from a little pressure on the quarterback, which also helps, so you have got to give the D-line some credit," Ayers said. "But Kyle was also right place, right time, getting back there, being a quarterback, being in the right drop, in the right place, and he did a nice job of that."

Wallace County also picked up three fumbles. Gfeller said the team was "more aggressive."

In 2007, the Wildcats went 13-0 and forced 37 turnovers en route to the Eight-Man Division II state championship.

Since then, Wallace County has forced 16, 24, 15, 22, and 21 turnovers the last five years, an average of 1.92 turnovers per game. From 2009-12, the Wildcats finished plus-12, minus-5, plus-9, and plus-6 in turnover margin.

Ayers talked about turnovers throughout camp. The point was solidified further when Ayers watched the NFL during the weekend and he saw a stat that said turnover margin is the No. 1 statistic in determining wins and losses.

"It's definitely been a focal point," Ayers said. "I would say we are stressing it a little bit more. We have always really stressed it, but we have just ramped it up. It's something that has definitely hurt us in the past, and it's something that we want to take care of and definitely win that battle every Friday night."

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