By ISAAC DEER
The 2021 Kansas high school football campaign has officially begun!
The Topeka High Trojans played host to Junction City Thursday night at Hummer Sports Park in the season-opener for Shawnee County football, with the Blue Jays rolling to a 34-0 Centennial League win in a game that was shortened due to inclement weather in the area.
Junction City got '21 off to a scorching hot start, taking the opening kickoff and driving down the field for an 11-yard rushing touchdown by Tyree Holloway.
Topeka was stumped on the offensive side of the ball, with constant pressure from the Blue Jay defense early in the first quarter.
Later in the first, quarterback David Rowell connected with TJ Jones for a 19-yard touchdown to put the Blue Jays up 13-0 with 2.8 seconds to go in the opening quarter.
Early in the second quarter, Rowell threw a perfectly-placed pass to Holloway for 59 yards that led to another Junction City touchdown. The score became 20-0 with 9:25 to go in the first half.
With no answers from the Topeka High defense or offense, the Blue Jays took advantage of the Trojans to take control of the game.
Xavion Felton rushed for a 3-yard touchdown to put the Blue Jays up 27-0 with 6:22 left in the second and Rowell ran in a 1-yard touchdown minutes later to put Junction City up by its final 34-point margin.
Topeka High picked up some momentum on a 58-yard run by senior Tylan Alejos with 2.2 seconds left in the half, but Junction City's Tyre Smith picked off a Peyton Wheat pass to end the threat.
The game went into a lightning delay at 8:34 p.m. and multiple lightning strikes forced the game to be called.
Junction City (1-0) will take on Manhattan next week and Topeka High (0-1) will travel to Emporia.
Alejos rushed for 95 yards to lead Topeka High while Rowell passed for 129 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 55 yards and a TD to lead Junction City.