By Ben Short
WICHITA – The Hutchinson Blue Dragons won a 49-19 decision on Sunday afternoon at Riverfront Stadium in Wichita against Garden City to claim the throne of Jayhawk Conference champions for a second straight season.
The tale of the tape was big plays, and the Blue Dragons had a lot of them. One, in particular, came with 9 minutes, 14 seconds left in the second quarter when Hutch had a slight 14-13 lead on the Broncbusters, and needed the momentum swing to take over this game.
It came from a blocked punt.
The blocked punt came from sophomore Dylan Kedzior, and it did just that for the Blue Dragons.
Kedzior and the Blue Dragons prepared for this in the previous week, knowing they might need a big play on special teams.
“We talked all week about forcing a blocked punt,” Kedzior said. “We haven’t blocked a punt in I don’t know how long. I think it was a big momentum booster for us. We game-planned all week trying to get a blocked punt, and it’s good we came out and got one.”
Hutch went on to score two more times before half, on rushing touchdowns from Anwar Lewis and Tye Edwards, using the momentum from Kedzior’s blocked punt in making it a 28-13 game going into the break.
Without that block who knows if that’s the margin at the half. The Blue Dragons went on to win the game with a huge game for the Blue Dragons’ defense that pleased coach Drew Dallas.
“Proud of our defense,” Dallas said. “I mean, I thought they played outstanding, didn’t break, allowed some field goals, and then offensively, just able to get a quick strike, and then after that, there was no looking back. Just pleased with their efforts, their enthusiasm, and how they’ve responded all year and they responded well today.”
The all-around effort made it easy for the Blue Dragons to pull off this blowout win.
The stat line for the No. 15 Kedzior read one tackle and one blocked punt. Although that’s not a record-breaking or eye-opening stat line, that block might have helped change the Blue Dragons’ destiny, by winning the Jayhawk Conference and perhaps punching their ticket to the NJCAA playoffs.