Bowden scores 7 TDs as Tonganoxie High rolls in interstate matchup against Southern Boone

Tonganoxie High football players react to a fumble recovery early in Saturday's game against Southern Boone at Beatty Field. The Chieftains defeated the Eagles, 52-13, and improved to 5-1 on the season. Enlarge photo

October 14, 2020

This year’s Tonganoxie High football schedule, like the rest of 2020, has been anything but normal.

Saturday’s opponent, Southern Boone, at least had some similar statistics. Both teams entered the game at 4-1, both squads are not far from Interstate-70 and about the same distance from a college town (Columbia, Mo., and Lawrence).

Tonganoxie, though, wasn’t the most hospitable once the game started. THS capitalized on an early SBHS fumble and kept rolling on its way to a 52-13 victory.

Tonganoxie led, 21-0, after the first quarter and 28-7 at halftime. THS tried to put together a two-minute drill just before halftime, but with no timeouts and the clock ticking down, the potential scoring drive fizzled in the middle of Southern Boone territory.

The Eagles (4-2) got in more of a rhythm offensively, but just couldn’t overcome that early deficit.

THS senior Tyler Bowden again had a big game, this time scoring all of Tonganoxie’s seven touchdowns on the ground. He finished the day with 273 yards on 23 carries and an average of 11.9 yards per carry.

Fellow senior Blake Poje made 11-of-21 passes for 125 yards.

His longest throw was 36 yards, a pass that senior James Eaton brought down deep in Eagle territory. He also had one interception and a fumble on the day.

Junior Sam Kleidosty carried the ball three times for 11 yards and Jackson Stevens carried the ball seven times for 6 yards.

Eaton led THS receivers with 43 yards. His other catch was for 7 yards. Kleidosty caught three passes for 30 yards, while senior Bode Strauss had one for 11 yards.

Senior Mitch Geiger had a 14-yard reception, while senior Dallas Bond had four catches for 27 yards.

THS senior Brandon Martin led the Chieftains defensively with 16 tackles (9 solo). Junior Devyn Splichal and 8 (6 solo) and Kleidosty 6 (5 solo)

Senior Tucker Isaacs also recorded a sack for Tonganoxie.

Tonganoxie nabbed three interceptions on the day from senior Tamar Brown, as well as Geiger and Splichal. Brown nearly had a pick 6 on the play, but Eagle defenders caught up with him at the 1-yard line.

Freshman Jackson McWilliams connected for a 41-yard field goal with about 2 minutes left in the game. He also went 7-for-7 on extra-point attempts.

Tonganoxie (5-1 overall and 3-1 in Frontier League play) now directs its attention at another new foe — and a 6A school.

Shawnee Mission East comes to Tonganoxie for a 7 p.m. game Friday.

The Lancers are 1-3 on the season. Games against SM North and SM West the first two weeks of the season were canceled. They lost to SM Northwest, 36-6, in their season opener Sept. 19 and then Olathe South, 21-20, the next week.

The Lancers defeated SM South, 37-28, Oct. 2, but are coming off a 52-7 loss this past Friday against Olathe North in Olathe.

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