In a state championship game that featured two of the top rushing teams in Kansas, it took the Meade Buffaloes ability of an aerial attack that was the difference in their 28-25 victory over Centralia in the Class 2-1A title game at Lewis Field.
Chris Hardaway threw a 24-yard touchdown pass to Jett Little with 36 seconds left in regulation and Trevin Wiens added the two-point conversion as the Buffaloes completed their comeback with under five minutes in regulation to win their second state title in three years.
It was the second time Hardaway and Little connected for a touchdown after the Panthers built an 11-point lead with 4:44 left in regulation. Hardaway found Little for a three-yard score after the Buffaloes quickly drove down the field.
The Meade defense gave their team a chance to complete the comeback after a failed onside kick attempt. The Buffaloes forced the Centralia offense to give the ball up, then the Buffaloes' special teams blocked the punt. Mark Finster cemented the state title for Meade by intercepting a pass as the Panthers drove for a potential tying field goal.
Little finished the championship game with three touchdowns. He also scored on a 5-yard run in the second quarter. He carried the ball nine times for 46 yards and caught four passes for 38 yards in the victory.
Hardaway led the team in rushing with 112 yards and was 8-for-18 throwing for 85 yards. Wiens ran for 69 yards and a 2-yard touchdown to put the Buffaloes ahead 14-13 in the third quarter.
Centralia quarterback J.T. Rosine ran for 145 yards and two scores: a 46-yard run in the first quarter to open the scoring and a 27-yard run for the Panthers' final score of the game for a 25-14 lead. Darrin Turner scored on a 27-yard run to open the stanza to put Centralia back on top. Sam Steinlage scored from five yards out in the second quarter to put Centralia up 13-7 at halftime.
Other state championship scores:
Class 3A -- Scott City 28, Silver Lake 21
Class 4A -- Holton 21, Eudora 0
Class 5A -- Bishop Carroll 60, Bishop Miege 21
Class 6A -- Shawnee Mission West 19, Hutchinson 14