On paper, the Adams Central and Chadron football teams were nearly identical. Both teams came into Thursday's first-round playoff matchup on winning streaks of six games and averaging more than 37 points per game on offense.
But it was Adams Central's defense that set the Patriots apart on Thursday.
Sixth-seeded Adams Central defeated No. 11 Chadron 22-7 thanks in large part to forced turnovers and key defensive stands.
The Patriots' coach Bill Carlin said his defense rose to the challenge against a strong offensive team.
"(Chadron) is a very good offensive unit. They average over 400 yards per game. Their only losses are to two Class B schools, one of which went into overtime," Carlin said.