Galena clinches CNC championship with district win over Southeast-Cherokee

CHEROKEE — Galena wrapped up the CNC League championship on Friday as it rolled to a 57-7 victory over Southeast-Cherokee in a Class 3A-District 7 matchup.

The Bulldogs stormed out to a 27-0 lead after one quarter and never looked back to claim the district win.

“We were pleased with our kids,” said Galena coach Beau Sarwinski. “We were able to get a lot of kids a lot of time.”

With its 11th consecutive regular-season victory dating back to last year, GHS remained perfect at 8-0 overall while moving to 6-0 in the CNC. Coupled with Columbus’ 20-8 loss at Frontenac, the Bulldogs wrapped up the outright CNC championship — their first league title since 2011 and seventh crown in school history.

“Winning the CNC league championship is huge as there are so many good teams,” Sarwinski said. “It’s quite an accomplishment. It is always one of our team goals every year. The CNC League is a great league, and we respect everyone in it.”

At 2-0 in district play, Galena has clinched a playoff berth for a seventh straight season and can wrap up the district championship on Thursday with a home win over Riverton. The Rams are currently 1-7 overall and 1-1 in the district following a 42-0 loss at Cherryvale.

“We are focused on playing one of our rivals, Riverton,” Sarwinski said. “They will play hard, and we will have to play hard as well.”

Meanwhile, Southeast — playing its final CNC league game before joining the Three Rivers League next season — dropped to 0-6 overall and 0-2 in district play. The Lancers, who have lost 27 consecutive games overall, will try to avoid a third straight winless campaign on Thursday as they travel to Cherryvale for their season finale.

Galena stormed out of the gates with four first-quarter touchdowns on Friday. Logan Henderson started the scoring with a 13-yard run into the end zone. Kooper Lawson followed with a 20-yard scoring run and followed that up with a three-yard touchdown reception from JC Shelton. Just before the end of the quarter, Joseph Helton ran in from 17 yards out to bump the Bulldog lead to 27-0 after 12 minutes of action.

GHS extended its lead up to 41-0 in the second period on a 27-yard run by Lawson and 24-yard scamper from Helton. Southeast did manage to get on the board, but Galena tacked on another score before the break on a 19-yard scramble from Nick Sarwinski that gave the Bulldogs a 49-7 halftime edge.

With the game well in hand, Galena added one more touchdown in the third quarter and coasted from there to the victory.

Galena had 459 total yards, including 361 on the ground. The Bulldogs held the Lancers to 66 yards, including a net of minus-41 yards rushing. The GHS defense has now held six of its eight opponents to single digits in scoring.

This was the last meeting between Galena and Southeast-Cherokee as CNC rivals as the Bulldogs beat the Lancers for an 11th straight time.