HUTCHINSON — With a little more than seven minutes to play and trailing by two scores to Hutchinson Trinity, Collegiate quarterback Forrest Short saw Spenser Schooler open near the sideline.
As the pass found Schooler's hands, Hutch Trinity defensive back Will Bothwell flew in and made a punishing hit on Schooler, who dropped the ball.
While that play certainly didn't determine the outcome of the Class 3A second-round game Saturday, it was the perfect example of what the Celtics set out to do against the defending state champions: Be physically dominating.
In its 26-8 victory, Hutch Trinity controlled the line of scrimmage; rushing for 161 yards while holding Collegiate's offense to 143 yards.
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Trinity will play at Norton Friday in the quarterfinals.
"We set out before every game wanting to set the tempo physically," Hutch Trinity coach Sean Racette said. "We have to take our opponents to the limit physically and see how far they want to go. That's how our kids like it. They want to hit."
Throughout the season, Hutch Trinity has been known more for its passing attack, featuring quarterback Derek Racette and receiver Michael Mesh. But in order for the Celtics to be successful not only against Collegiate but down the road in the playoffs, Sean Racette thought they needed to establish the run, in order to free Mesh and the other receivers downfield.
"We've had the ability to run the ball all year, so that's what our game plan was," Sean Racette said. "We can't go to our play-action passing game unless we can run the ball and our big guys did a good job freeing our running backs today."
Running back Austin Rea paced the Celtics with 100 yards and his 1-yard touchdown midway through the second quarter gave Trinity its largest lead, 23-0.
"Either a team has it (being physical) or they don't," Rea said. "We chose today to come out and punch them in the mouth. We took care of our business."
Collegiate coach Bill Messamore wanted to offset his team's size disadvantage with its speed.
But the Celtics showed surprising speed themselves, holding Raymond Taylor to 73 yards on 20 carries and Isaiah Franklin to 27 yards on eight carries.
"My plan coming in was to get to the corner and run away from all of their big monsters," Messamore said. "Their outside did a great job and always seemed to make a play on the edge."
Franklin scored the Spartans' lone touchdown late in the third quarter, but Trinity answered two possessions later with a 35-yard field goal from Mesh.
Wichita Collegiate (9-2) 0 0 8 0 — 8 Hutchinson Trinity (10-1) 10 13 0 3 — 26
HT—Racette 2 run (Mesh kick)
HT—Mesh 24 FG
HT—Koenigsman 5 run (kick failed)
HT—Rea 1 run (Mesh kick)
WC—Franklin 12 run (Bent run)
HT—Mesh 35 FG
Rushing—Collegiate, Taylor 20-73, Franklin 8-27, Bent 4-12, Short 3-5. Trinity, Rea 15-100, Koenigsman 11-42, Racette 9-18, Dyer 1-1.
Passing—Collegiate, Short 7-24-39-1. Trinity, Racette 5-12-75-0.
Receiving— Collegiate, Franklin 2-17, Schooler 1-13, Short 2-12, Flemming 1-0, Taylor 1-(-3). Trinity, Koenigsman 2-35, Mesh 1-27, Bothwell 1-10, Rea 1-6.