WAHOO — If a late first-half touchdown supplied Wahoo with momentum, think what the first three minutes of the second half must have done.
The Warriors scored on their first two possessions of the third period as a 22-8 halftime lead ballooned to 36-8. The running clock kicked in with 9:59 left in the game after a 30-yard touchdown pass from Jonathan Abbott to Jacob Moline.
The scoring deluge was too much for Arlington as Wahoo rolled to a 43-8 win in a quarterfinal game of the Class C-1 state football playoffs. Wahoo will play Platteview, a 28-0 winner over Columbus Lakeview, at Platteview next Tuesday in the semifinal round. Platteview defeated the Warriors 63-14 last month.
Wahoo (9-2) took a 14-point halftime lead following a 12-play, 65-yard drive capped by Seth Stewart's 10-yard touchdown run with 1:16 left in the first half.
That scoring attitude carried over for the Warriors as junior Tyler Kavan broke loose for a pair of long touchdown runs in the opening minutes of the second half. Kavan, who rushed for 196 yards on 16 carries, scored from 44 yards out on the second play of the second half. That run was set up when Wahoo recovered an onside kick at the Warriors' 49-yard line.
Kavan, who had to be helped from the field twice in the first half because of injuries, looked healthy on the Warriors' second possession of the third quarter. He broke through a hole on the right side, headed to the sideline and outran defenders on a 73-yard touchdown dash with nine minutes left in the period.
"We haven't been coming out real well in the third quarter," Wahoo coach Chad Fox said. "We wanted to really be sharp and put the hammer down a little bit. We had some plays where we gave them some trouble on the perimeter, then we hit the blast with TK (Kavan), and he popped that one. He is a dynamic player. He makes play-calling pretty easy when he can take it to the house at any time."
Arlington (7-4) stayed within striking distance early in the second quarter on a 19-yard scoring run by Drew Schroeder. But that was all the Eagles' offense could muster as Wahoo's defense shut down Arlington's rushing game. The Eagles gained 73 yards on the ground in the second half and finished the game with 242 yards of total offense, with 37 yards through the air.
Arlington's lack of a passing game hampered any comeback hopes. The Eagles' first completion came midway through the third period, followed by an interception by Wahoo's Stewart on the next play.
One bright spot for the Eagles was the running of Schroeder, who gained 116 yards on 25 carries. But Wahoo's defense limited the quick back to 46 yards in the second half.
WAHOO 43, ARLINGTON 8
WAHOO -- A pair of big touchdown runs from Tyler Kavan helped seal the game and a ticket to the semifinals for Wahoo. Kavan finished with 196 yards on 16 carries with two touchdowns while quarterback Jon Abbott ended with 82 yards on ten carries and a pair of touchdown runs. Wahoo advances to play Platteview for the right to advance to the championship game.
WAH--FG Lindgren 29
WAH--Abbott 25 run (kick failed)
ARL--Schroeder 19 run (Erickson run)
WAH--Moline 25 pass from Abbott (Lindgren kick)
WAH--Stewart 10 run (kick failed)
WAH--Kavan 44 run (Lindgren kick)
WAH--Kavan 73 run (Lindgren kick)
WAH--Abbott 1 run (Lindgren kick)