In its past three games, dating to the start of the 2012 playoffs, York has wins over a No. 2- and No. 1-ranked team in Class B.
The Dukes handed preseason No. 1 Norris a 35-9 setback on Friday night. Last year, their stunner was a 28-9 first-round playoff win at previously undefeated Scottsbluff.
“There's no more shocking the state stuff,'' York coach Glen Snodgrass said Monday.
York, which landed the No. 6 spot in this week's ratings, never trailed Friday night and held the Titans scoreless in the second half to build on a 14-9 halftime lead. Jonah Otte and Evan Neville each ran for two scores and Linden Kaliff opened the scoring with a 40-yard touchdown pass to Ty Danielson.
Snodgrass, who's in his third year at York after a successful stay at Eight Man-1 Overton, said two key possessions were when the Dukes held Norris to a field goal at the end of the first half and when the defense turned back the Titans inside the 10 after the offense lost a fumble midway through the third quarter.
“Our defense really stiffened up, especially inside the red zone,'' the coach said. “Part of that is that in our secondary we feel we have playmakers with a lot of speed and inside the red zone, there's less room for the offense.”
Snodgrass said York spotted Norris up to 50 pounds per man on the line (the Dukes also were without two of their largest linemen for disciplinary reasons), yet were able to protect Kaliff.
“Linden is a great kid. He has a phenomenal work ethic,'' Snodgrass said. “We've had to back him down in the weight room. He'd lift all day if we let him. He's not the greatest running quarterback, but he's comfortable in the pocket and finding receivers and he has the strongest arm of anybody I ever coached.”
York's game this week is at Lexington, which opened with a 15-7 loss to Scottsbluff.
“We just had a big win, but we have to move on,'' Snodgrass said. “A sign of a great team is one that comes out to practice every day at a high level and does the same on Friday nights. Right now we're the rated team and the one with the bull's-eye on the back. Teams like Lexington, they'll come out and play a little harder. You never look past anybody.”
If there's a coach who can appreciate what a backup quarterback brings to a game, it's Matt Turman.
The Omaha Skutt head coach got his big opportunity in college at Nebraska when Tommie Frazier and Brook Berringer, the Huskers' top two signal-callers, went down with injuries during the 1994 season.
Turman stepped in, led NU to a win over Kansas State, and the rest is history.
On Friday night, his SkyHawks were down to what essentially amounted to their fifth-string quarterback in a 28-9 loss at Gretna.
“It's football,” Turman said. “I know as well as any that quarterbacks get hurt.”
With two of their top three injured a scrimmage the week prior — including expected starter Creighton Koley — Skutt went with junior Isaiah Ramsey.
When Ramsey went down with cramps in the second half, Skutt brought in receiver Jon Plance (who already had a catch in the game). Plance went down with cramps one play later and Turman was forced to use a sophomore in an emergency role.
Ramsey returned later in the game and figures to be fine going forward, but even Turman had to shake his head a bit at his team's luck under center.
“It's a little disheartening,” he said, “when you see your guys go down.”
Elkhorn wary of Gross
Elkhorn has seen plenty of Omaha Gross in the past 12 months, handing the Cougars their last loss a year ago and then dropping a 14-7 decision to the eventual Class B state champions in the semifinals.
“They look better at the comparable point of the season,'' Antlers coach Mark Wortman said. “This guy playing quarterback (junior Matt Herting) looks good. They have a solid team and (running back-linebacker) Anthony Vigneri is one of the best in the state.”
Because of first-week losses to preseason No. 1 Norris and No. 2 Omaha Skutt, Elkhorn has moved up to No. 1 in Class B and Gross is No. 2 in time for their game at 7 p.m. Friday at Elkhorn Stadium.
Walthill ends skid at 46
With its 21-13 Six-Man win over Santee, Walthill stopped its losing streak at 46 games. The Fighting Blujays hadn't won since beating Winnebago 78-50 to close the 2006 season.
The state record for consecutive losses in eight-man or six-man football is 48 by Nemaha, a streak that ran from 1958 to 1964.
Tickets on sale
Tickets for Friday's Millard West-Millard North game at Buell Stadium will be sold at the schools from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, Millard West athletic director Chris Loofe said.
Millard West is the visiting team and Millard North the home team.