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The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • Season ends after losing early lead

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  • The Pioneers were up 14-12 in the second quarter, but Shawnee Mission East controlled it after that and won 36-14 in the first round of the playoffs. The Lancers rolled to a 12-0 lead early after Leavenworth punted and fumbled, but Jason Randall and Isaiah Ross started moving the ball for Leavenworth. Randall ran for 22 yards and Ross ran for 21 on a touchdown drive that ended with a 2-yard quarterback sneak by Landry Hodges to get the Pioneers within five late in the first. Leavenworth took a 14-12 lead after forcing a turnover on downs and a 4-yard score by Randall, but the scoring would stop for the Pioneers. Leavenworth would fumble twice and punt twice after that. “During those two scoring drives, we were coming off the ball and we were doing a really good job,” said head coach Mark Littrell. “We came up with plays, but we’ve got to be more consistent.” The Lancers would run much of the clock with their running game and get three scores inside the 5-yard line and add a field goal after the Pioneers led 14-12. “It all starts up front,” Littrell said. “They run their option scheme then they run power and then they run iso at you.” The Pioneers had opportunities to make a run. The Pioneers got the ball at their own 41-yard line with 12.6 seconds left in the first half, but a trick play failed and the half ended with an incomplete pass after that. The Lancers fumbled on the third play of the second half to give Leavenworth the ball at their own 29, but punted after four plays. The Pioneers got the passing game going in the fourth quarter with Hodges completed passes to Juwan Potts to go along with successful runs by Randall and Ross, but Ross fumbled close to the red zone. That would be the final time Leavenworth would possess the ball, as the Lancers drove down the field and was able to knee on the ball deep in Leavenworth territory to end the game. “We have to work hard in the offseason and start fresh next season,” Littrell said. It was Littrell’s first season with the Pioneers, and he said the seniors made the transition for him easier. “These seniors, they’ve been with two different head coaches,” he said. “My plan is to stay here and keep our program and be consistent. “They’ve set the bar for the rest of what we are going to do in Pioneer football.”

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