The quarterfinal loss suffered by the Waurika Eagles certainly was hard to take, but it should not take away from one of the best football seasons in school history.
Waurika finished the season with an 11-1 record and that mark ties for the fifth most wins in a season for the Eagles.
The Eagles were ranked ninth in the final Class B poll by The Daily Oklahoman. The last time a Waurika team finished ranked in the top 10 was in 1997 when the Eagles were ranked seventh in the final rankings.
The 11 victories were the most since Waurika put together 12 wins in the 1988 season.
Waurika was undefeated in the regular season and that has happened only five other times in the 99-year history of the sport at Waurika.
Not even the state title team in 1951 finished the regular season with an unblemished record.
Two of the unbeaten seasons came in 1928 and 1933, which were before the playoff system began in Oklahoma. The records for those two years feature some tie scores in the results.
The 1928 team finished 7-0-5 and in 1933 the Eagles were 8-0-2.
The 2018 squad claimed the second district title since beginning eight-man play.
The season-ending loss in the quarterfinals marked the first quarterfinal playoff appearance by a Waurika team since the 1996 squad defeating Ringling, 14-6, before falling in the semifinal round.
In Waurika’s 11 wins they have played beyond halftime only three times. Waurika was involved in a total of 10 games that did not go the full four quarters.
The Eagles outscored opponents by an average of 49.3 to 13.3. Waurika scored an incredible 498 points in the first half against their opponents while surrendering only 146 – and 52 of those points came in the loss to Davenport.
Opponents only scored 14 points in the second half against the Eagles, but that is mainly due to most games ending at halftime because of the 45-point mercy rule.
Certainly, the 2018 squad coached by first-year mentor Joe Allen accomplished a great deal. But, there were also some outstanding individual performances during the season.
Turner Mora was outstanding directing the Eagle offense from the quarterback slot. The talented junior signal-caller finished with 24 rushing touchdowns, two kickoff returns for scores and 18 two-point conversion runs for a total of 192 points during the season. He also threw 12 touchdown passes during the season.
Colton Bryant, a senior running back for the Eagles was the second leading scorer on the team. He rushed for 15 touchdowns and had three touchdown receptions. He also returned three interceptions for scores and had 20 two-point conversions.
The longest run from scrimmage for a score during the season came in the Eagles’ critical win at Wilson. Zachary Brown raced 80 yards for a score to top the list of long-distance touchdown runs.
Bryant and Mora also had long scoring runs. Bryant had a 78-yard run against Grandfield, while Mora scored from 71 yards out against Bray-Doyle.
The longest scoring pass play came against Central High when Mora connected with Hunter Wesberry from 44 yards out.
The Eagles had only two kickoff returns all season and Mora had both of those. A 75-yard return against Carnegie was the longest of the season.
Bryant’s 50-yard interception return against Ryan was the longest of three interceptions returned for a touchdown and Bryant had all three of them.
Waurika returned five opponents’ fumbles for scores. Edwin Garcia’s 55-yard scoop-and-score against Caddo was the longest return of the year.
The Eagles will try to build on the success of the 2018 campaign next season and will have seven returning starters to help provide some stability for the 2019 squad, which will likely be tabbed to repeat as district champions.
It will likely be a trying season for the Ryan Cowboy and Cowgirl basketball squads.
The most trying aspect of the upcoming 2018-19 season will be having a place to play and practice as the Ryan gym undergoes a significant makeover.
It is hoped that a limited number of games can be played at home, but otherwise the Cowboys and Cowgirls will be on the road most of the season.
The Cowgirls and Cowboys will open the season on Tuesday by hosting Grandfield. Tipoff for the high school games will be 6:30 p.m. after a pair of junior high contests against the Bearcats.
It will be the homecoming game for Ryan because of the uncertainty of the future availability of the facilities.
Construction of the remodeled gym that opened in 1957 is going well and at the moment is on time for completion near the end of the current basketball season. The updated facility will feature new home locker rooms, a new concession area, and new entry.
The biggest change in the gym will be an added limited number of seats on the south side. The south side will be the new home of the bench areas and the scorer’s table.
Watch for announcements about changes for the location of upcoming games on social media or in this newspaper.
Second-year Cowgirl coach Steve Spangler is hopeful his three returning starters, who were all-conference a year ago, will be able to carry the squad that is small in number.
The Cowgirls will depend on the return of Samantha Good, Lily York and Juliet Spangler to carry what will be a rather young squad that will feature five juniors, one sophomore and three freshmen.
Those three will be counted on to provide the bulk of the offense and hopefully, the Cowgirls can find some more scoring. York was the co-offensive most valuable player in the Southern Eight Conference a year ago and was the leading scorer in 13 of the Cowgirls’ 24 games.
Spangler says at least one and at times, two freshmen will work their way into the starting lineup.
The Cowgirls traveled to Oklahoma City to face some tough foes in preseason scrimmages and the team held its own, according to Spangler.
Last season the Cowgirls made a marked improvement but still finished only 8-16 after going 3-20 in 2017. The team did finish as the district runner-up.
In the Southern Eight, Spangler believes that Big Pasture will be the top contender as the Lady Rangers welcome all five starters back from a year ago.
The Cowboys will be under the direction of first-year coach Austin Masoner. Not only is it his first as the Cowboy mentor, but it is also his first year of full-time coaching responsibilities.
According to Masoner, the Cowboy practices have been spirited and the 15-man roster seems to be buying into what Masoner hopes the team will become during the 2019 campaign.
Overall, the Cowboys will feature some size that will enable play with an inside post. Guard play is also in good hands for the Cowboys.
Grayson Tomberlin, who started a year ago as a freshman, and senior Skyler Parkhill, a Southern Eight Conference all-star last season, will be called upon to carry the offense. Those two were the leading scorers for the Cowboys in 11 of the 22 contests last season.
Travis Fristoe and Brock Smith will be counted on to help carry the Cowboy defense. The Cowboys will employ a great deal of zone defense, but Masoner noted he would also mix in some man-to-man and specialty defenses of the situation called for it.
The Cowboys’ weakness this season will be the overall lack of experience. The Cowboys also lack depth at the guard positions, but Masoner is hoping he can develop some of the other plays to help with the ball-handling.
The Cowboys hope to rebound from the disastrous 2018 season when the Cowboys slumped to a 5-17 mark after posting four straight winning records and two district titles.
The race for the conference title may be a tough one with Waurika and Big Pasture looking to be the top contenders along with conference newcomer Frederick.
The scheduled season-opener with Waurika was postponed because of the involvement of both schools in the football playoffs.
Following the season lid-lifter with Grandfield, the Cowboys and Cowgirls will travel to St. Jo, Texas for an invitational tournament.
The Cowgirls get the tourney started a week from today (November 29) with a 1:30 p.m. contest against Alvord. If the Cowgirls get a first-round win, they will play on November 30 at 1:30 p.m. against the winner of Sacred Heart and Ringling.
The Cowboys will take the court in the St. Jo Tournament on November 29 when they take on the Paradise Junior Varsity. Tipoff is set for 3 p.m. and the game will be played in the auxiliary gym at the St. Jo campus. A win would advance the Cowboys to a 6 p.m. game on November 30 against the winner of Sacred Heart and St. Jo.
The next weekend the Cowboys and Cowgirls will compete in the Black and Gold Classic hosted by Wilson.
A review of the 2018 Ryan High School football season reveals a number of outstanding performances by individuals and by the team.
More importantly, the 2018 season will go down as a season where the Cowboys overachieved preseason expectations.
The Cowboys finished with a 7-4 mark and earned a runner-up finish in District B-4. Ryan was tabbed by most preseason polls to finish fifth in the district.
The season ended with a 58-12 loss to Burns Flat-Dill City in the first round of the Class B playoffs. BFDC advanced to the quarterfinals last week with a 34-26 victory over Pioneer-Pleasant Vale.
Offensively the Cowboys entered the season with talent at the skilled positions with three returning starters.
However, it was the offensive line that was the biggest question.
After the first game, the Cowboy offensive line started to jell and it helped the Cowboy offense to produce the third highest average number of points scored in a season in school history.
The three key offensive linemen were Sam Brown, Justin Williams and Trey Bryant. Andrew Villerreal and Kalen Weldon were key blockers from the receiver positions.
The defense turned in a couple of impressive performances – a shutout victory over hapless Temple in the third game of the season and a key 24-6 district victory over Wilson in the eighth game of the year.
But, for the most part, the defense never was able to stop opponents from gaining lots of yards and scoring points. The Cowboys gave up 50 or more points to three opponents. The amazing thing is they had a 1-2 record in those games.
The Cowboys gave up an average of 350 yards per game to the 11 opponents. Fortunately, the Cowboys were able to average 367 yards of offense per game to help lead them to the winning mark.
The seven wins for the Cowboys has not happened often. Only eight times in 99 seasons have the Cowboys won seven games.
The Cowboys have won seven or more games only 26 times during the 99-year history of football which is just over 25% of the time.
The offense was definitely the key to the success of the 2018 season. Ryan came up just short of having two 1,000-yard rushers.
Grayson Tomberlin was the top ball carrier for the Cowboys with 1,172 yards on 162 carries. Tomberlin had a season-high 273 yards against Bray-Doyle, which was the 12th best mark in school history.
Tomberlin compiled the fourth and seventh best yards passing totals in school history against Bray-Doyle and Maysville, respectively. His four touchdown passes against Bray-Doyle is tied for the fifth most in school history.
The sophomore quarterback finished with 1,688 yards passing and 11 touchdowns.
Skyler Parkhill was just behind Tomberlin’s rushing total with 913 yards on only 107 carries for an average of 8.5 yards per carry. His 228 yards rushing against Empire is tied for the 26th best individual rushing total in school history. His six rushing touchdowns against Empire was the second most in school history.
Parkhill was the leading receiver for the Cowboys with 39 catches for 932 yards – coming up just short of a 1,000-yard double-double in yards rushing and receiving.
In the game against Wilson, Parkhill snagged nine receptions, which is the second most in school history. Parkhill owns that school record with 11 catches in a game during his freshman season. The four-year starter for the Cowboys also had two other games with seven receptions, which tied him for the fifth most in school history.
Parkhill also broke the school record for most yards receiving in a game. He totaled 215 yards receiving against Bray-Doyle to set the record. He also had 189 yards receiving against Maysville and Caddo and that is the second most yards receiving on the school record books. His 154 yards receiving against Wilson is the eighth best mark in school history.
In the game against Bray-Doyle, Parkhill had four receptions for scores and that is the top mark in school history.
As you might expect the two Cowboy performers led the team in scoring in 2018. Parkhill total 176 points for the season with 48 coming against Bray-Doyle – the most in school history. Parkhill had 15 rushing touchdowns and 10 touchdown receptions. He also had an interception return for a touchdown. Parkhill also had nine two-point conversion runs and one two-point conversion reception.
Parkhill’s interception return was the longest in school history – 99 yards against Empire.
Travis Fristoe contributed to the Cowboy rushing game. He became eligible after the season started, but had 277 yards rushing and scored five touchdowns on the ground. He also had a touchdown reception.
Weldon was another top target of Tomberlin in the passing game. The Cowboy senior finished with 18 receptions for 319 yards and three touchdown receptions. He also returned a fumble for a score and had five two-point conversion receptions.
As a team, the Cowboy offense did not produce any school records but did record some impressive marks in several categories.
The 276 yards passing against Bray-Doyle was the fourth highest total in school history and the 642 yards against the Donkeys represents the fourth highest total in school history.
Ryan had 12 receptions in games against Maysville, Wilson and Central High which ties for the ninth most in school history.
The 24 first downs earned against Bray-Doyle were the third most in school history. And, the 152 points scored by Bray-Doyle and Ryan combined set a new school mark. The 98 points scored by Ryan and Grandfield tied for the seventh most in school history.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Cowboys gave up the fourth most points in a game in school history as Bray-Doyle hit the Cowboys for 74 points. The 507 yards gained by Bray-Doyle in the game was the sixth highest total by an opponent in school history.
Caddo rolled up 502 yards on the Cowboys and that mark is the seventh-highest total in school history.
The Cowboys had six seniors that completed their gridiron careers – Williams, Parkhill, Weldon, Brown, Pacen Wiest and Fristoe.
Here is a look back at some of the Cowboy games during the season:
Best All-Around Performance: A 24-6 victory over Wilson in what were awful playing conditions.
Most Dramatic Win: The memorable 78-74 victory over Bray-Doyle tops the list of exciting games this season. The Donkeys scored 30 points in the fourth quarter to rally from a large deficit before the Cowboys scored with only four seasons left on the clock to pull out the win.
Most Memorable Performance: The Cowboys were very impressive in the 84-36 victory over Empire. The Cowboy defense contributed scores on interception returns and also had a kickoff return in Ryan’s mercy-rule win over the preseason pick to win the district title.
Most Forgettable Game: The 57-26 loss to Caddo was by far the Cowboys’ poorest performance of the season for a game that lasted four quarters. The Bruins finished the season with a 2-8 record.
Most Embarrassing Loss: The 58-0 loss to rival Waurika was a tough one although the Eagles are putting together one of the finest seasons in school history. But, The Cowboys had six turnovers in only one half of football and never gave themselves a chance to be competitive against the eventual district champion. Honorable mention is the 68-8 loss in the season opener to Snyder when the Cowboys looked totally disorganized and caused a great deal of pessimism among Cowboy fans about the 2018 season.
Most Improvement: After the difficult loss to Snyder, the Cowboys came back in the second week of the season with an impressive 70-28 victory over Grandfield.
Most Undisciplined Game: The Cowboys gained the 78-74 win over Bray-Doyle despite 24 penalties for 218 yards. The Cowboys had several personal foul penalties and three unsportsmanlike conduct penalties. Penalties plagued the Cowboys through much of the season.
Key Win: Every district game was important for the Cowboys because the talent edge was not that great, but the 24-6 win over Wilson helped propel the Cowboys into the runner-up position in the district that enabled them to host a playoff game for the second year in a row.
Biggest Blunder: This was not committed by the Cowboys, but rather this reporter. Throughout the season the name of Skyler Parkhill was misspelled. Apologies are in order to the outstanding Cowboy senior.
In was a slow start for the Waurika Eagles last Friday night in the second round playoff contest with Cherokee, but the Eagles broke loose for a 58-14 win over the Chiefs with the aid of five Cherokee interceptions.
Waurika will hit the road for the quarterfinal round. The Eagles travel to Davenport on Friday. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
The Eagles had a few turnover problems, too, as the first two Eagle drives ended with a fumble and an interception.
But the Waurika defense held its ground and forced Cherokee to punt on its first two offensive thrusts.
After the second punt, the Eagles took the ball at the Waurika 18 and marched 82 yards in just eight plays for the first score of the game.
Turner Mora connected with Aaron Nitka and Hunter Wesberry on two big pass plays to help the Eagles advance down the field.
Zac Brown capped the drive with a six-yard run and Colton Bryant ran for the two points to give the Eagles an 8-0 advantage with 1:40 left in the first period.
Cherokee answered the score after Kade Chace returned the kickoff to the Cherokee 44 yard line. It took the Chiefs five plays to get the game-tying score.
On the first play of the second quarter, Chace found 6-8 wide receiver Blake Hall in the end zone for a 12-yard touchdown pass. Chace added the two-point conversion with 11:55 left before intermission.
The Eagles were forced to punt on the ensuing series and the Chiefs took over at their own 27-yard line.
The Chiefs drove down the field, but on a second down pass by Chace, Waurika’s Wesberry made a diving interception to thwart the drive and give the Eagles possession at their own two.
Disaster struck on the first play for the Eagles as they fumbled the handoff and Cherokee’s Damein Labato recovered just inside the end zone for the Chief touchdown. The run failed, but the Chiefs were in front, 14-8 with 7:23 left before the half.
This was only the second time this season the Eagles have trailed in a game, but they responded well to the challenge.
After a 12-yard kickoff return by Kevin Garcia, the Eagles were in business at their own 48. Overcoming a penalty, the Eagles drove the distance in seven plays with Mora getting the score on a one-yard plunge. Mora connected with Aaron Nitka for the two-point conversion and Waurika was back in front, 16-14, with 4:19 left in the second quarter.
Things began to turn south from this point as Treavor Green could not handle a pooch kickoff by the Eagles and Austin Dyer was there to recover the ball for the Eagles.
Cherokee forced another Waurika punt, but Payton Ream let the ball go through his hands and Edwin Garcia was downfield for the Eagles to recover the ball.
A Cherokee penalty on the play put Waurika at the Chiefs’ seven-yard line and in just two plays the Eagles’ Mora got the score from five yards out. Matt Arriolla ran for the two-point conversion giving Waurika 24-14 lead with 2:21 left in the half.
Following a Cherokee penalty on its first play, Wesberry picked off his second pass of the game and returned it to the Cherokee 24 giving the Eagles another golden opportunity.
The Eagles covered the distance in just four plays with Mora getting the touchdown on a two-yard run. K. Garcia ran for the two points and with just 40 seconds showing on the clock, Waurika held a commanding 32-14 lead.
The second half belonged to the Eagles. The defense stepped up and thwarted three of the four Cherokee possessions by snaring interceptions. The other possession the Eagles held Cherokee on fourth down.
Meanwhile, the Waurika offense continued to churn out scoring drives to dominate the second half.
On Cherokee’s first possession of the second half, K. Garcia picked off an errant Cherokee pass and returned the ball 33 yards to the Cherokee 27 yard line.
K. Garcia went the distance on first down for the score to increase Waurika’s lead to 38-14 with 9:15 to play in the third quarter.
The next Cherokee drive also ended with an interception by Mora. He returned it 23 yards from the Waurika one, but a Waurika holding penalty set the Eagles back to the Waurika 15.
The Eagles engineered a 10-play, 85-yard scoring drive and the scoring play was a 22-yard pass from Mora to Nitka. After the two-point conversion failed, the Eagles held a 44-14 lead with 3:12 left in the third quarter.
Cherokee was able to pick up a first down on the ensuing possession, but the Eagle defense stuffed a fourth down and short run to take the ball over on downs.
This time it took the Eagles 12 plays to cover 60 yards for another score. Arriolla was heading into the end zone for the score but fumbled and Jordan Watkins fell on the loose ball for the Waurika touchdown. Mora ran for the two-point conversion giving Waurika a 52-14 lead with just 7:52 left in the game.
On the kickoff, Cherokee failed to field the ball and Mora raced down the field to cover the ball giving the Eagles possession at the Cherokee 28. On the first play, Mora raced 28 yards for the score. The two-point conversion that would have ended the game by the mercy rule failed, but with 7:44 remaining in the game the final margin was established.
Cherokee moved the ball to the Waurika 16 on the following possession, but K. Garcia ended that threat with an interception in the end zone and Waurika successfully ran off the final 3:07 of the game to secure the win.
K. Garcia picked up 170 yards on 14 carries for the Eagles, while Arriolla, who came in for an injured Bryant, added 105 yards on 11 carries.
Wesberry and K. Garcia each had two interceptions for the Waurika defense and that helped limit the Chiefs to only 58 offensive plays compared to Waurika’s 72 plays.
After the Chiefs scored their second touchdown in the second quarter it marked only the second time all season Waurika has trailed an opponent….The 58 points scored is the second highest total by Waurika in a playoff game…The 1951 state championship team put up 65 points on Okemah in the state finals that year….The 170 yards rushing by K. Garcia is the top rushing mark for the season by a Waurika player….Mora’s four touchdowns on the ground was a season-high for the Eagle quarterback….It is also the most rushing touchdowns by any Waurika player this season…The 10 penalties whistled against the Eagles is the most this season and the 85 yards in penalties against Waurika is the most yards penalized this season….The 58 points scored by Waurika is tied for the third highest number of points scored in a game in 2018…Arriolla’s 105 yards rushing is also the top mark of the season for the freshman running back…The 374 yards rushing for the Eagles is the most this year and the first time they have topped the 300-yard mark mainly because only two games went the full four quarters during the season.
Game in Figures
First Downs 1223
Yards Rushing 34-132 54-374
Yards Passing 102133
Passes 8-12 9-16
Passes Int. By15
Fumbles, Lost1-1 3-2
Punts 2-33 2-39
SCORE BY QUARTERS
WAURIKA – Zac Brown 6 run (Colton Bryant run), 1:40, 1st Quarter
CHEROKEE – Blake Hall 12 pass from Kade Chace (Chace run), 11:55, 2nd Quarter
CHEROKEE – Damien Labato recovered fumble in end zone (run failed), 7:23, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Turner Mora 4 run (Aaron Nitka pass from Mora), 4:19, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Mora 5 run (Matt Arriolla run), 2:21, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Mora 2 run (Kevin Garcia), :40, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Garcia 27 run (run failed), 9:15, 3rd Quarter
WAURIKA – Nitka 22 pass from Mora (run failed), 3:12, 3rd Quarter
WAURIKA – Jordan Watkins recovered fumble in end zone (Mora run), 7:52, 4th Quarter
WAURIKA – Mora 28 run (run failed), 7:44, 4th Quarter
It took a little longer than most of Waurika’s victories in the 2018 season, but the Eagles eventually came away with another 48-0 mercy-rule victory over Cyril last Friday night in the first round of the Class B playoffs.
The Eagles will host a second-round playoff game and will face Cherokee tomorrow night (Friday). Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m. at the newly-named Norman West Field at Cy Sloan Stadium.
The Eagles totally dominated the game especially on defense giving up only 40 total yards through just over three and half quarters of play before Waurika ended the game by the 45-point rule.
Waurika got the first break of the game when a fourth-down punt attempt went awry when the ball was snapped over the punter’s head.
The Eagles took possession at the Cyril 23 and in just two plays scored the first touchdown. Turner Mora covered the final 21 yards. Zac Brown ran for the two points give Waurika an 8-0 advantage with 9:51 left in the first quarter.
The Pirates had snap issues on the next possession and Cyril was forced to punt after two bad snaps and a quarterback sack by Aaron Nitka.
The Eagles set up at their own 42 and marched the 58 yards in just three plays Waurika had its second score of the night.
Mora scooted down the left sideline and was tackled just inside the Cyril one for a 41-yard gain. Colton Bryant took the ball over the goal line on the next play to give Waurika a 14-0 lead with 7:17 showing on the first quarter clock.
After holding Cyril to another three-and-out, the Eagles started another drive at the Waurika 26. In just three plays the Eagles covered the 74 yards for another score. The big play of the drive was a 54-yard pass to Edwin Garcia that put the Eagles deep in Pirate territory.
Two plays later, Mora picked up a bad snap and walked into the end zone from seven yards out. The two-point conversion failed, but Waurika held a 20-0 lead with 4:09 still to play in the first quarter.
After a series of exchanges in possessions, Cyril finally got something going as the Pirates moved from their own 48 to the Waurika one, but on a fourth down play, Gatlin Black crashed through to drop the Cyril quarterback for a five-yard loss.
On Cyril’s next possession, Hunter Wesberry picked off a Pirate pass, but the Eagles were stymied after being stopped short on a fourth down play.
The Pirates took over on downs but on first down, Black pounced on a Cyril fumble giving the ball back to the Eagles.
This time the Eagles took advantage of the turnover and in just two plays moved the 33 yards for the score. Kevin Garcia scored from 17 yards out and after the two-point conversion failed, the Eagles held a 26-0 lead with just 11 seconds left in the half.
The second half opened with a failed Cyril onside kick that Austin Dyer recovered at midfield.
On first down, K. Garcia went the distance for the score. The two-point conversion failed, but Waurika was in front, 32-0, with 11:48 left in the third quarter.
Cyril could not move on its next drive and after Waurika took possession, Cyril’s Jose Rivera intercepted a Mora pass giving the Pirates possession at Cyril seven-yard line.
On first down, the Cyril quarterback scrambled back into the end zone and was met by Mora and Jordan Watkins for a safety that increased the Waurika lead to 34-0 with 7:50 left in the third quarter.
The free kick was returned to the Cyril four and Bryant scored on a four-yard run on first down. Brown got the two-point conversion and Waurika held a commanding 42-0 advantage with 7:40 left in the third quarter.
With the mercy-rule victory now in sight, the Eagles attempted an onside kick which Waurika’s Dyer was able to retrieve giving the Eagles the ball. In six plays the Eagles were able to get the game-ending score as Mora scored from one yard away with 5:45 left in the third quarter.
EAGLE FLIGHTS: The 48-point margin of victory is the third best in school history behind the 55-point margin against Haileyville in 1988 and the 51-point win over Okemah in the 1951 state finals….The 48 points scored by the Eagles is the sixth most in school history during post-season play…The Eagles are 2-3 in the playoffs since moving to eight-man play and both wins have come over Cyril….This was the third time the Eagles have held an opponent to less than 40 yards of total offense during the 2018 season….Cyril still leads the series with the Eagles with four wins in the seven meetings….Waurika is 10-0 for only the second time in school history….This is the second time since beginning eight-man play the Eagles have advanced to the second round and only the third time since the 1996 season.
Game in Figures
First Downs 36
Yards Rushing 36-5 26-226
Yards Passing 3554
Passes 1-2 1-6
Passes Int. By11
Fumbles, Lost4-1 0-0
Punts 3-31 1-40
SCORE BY QUARTERS
WAURIKA – Turner Mora 21 run (Zac Brown run), 9:57, 1st Quarter
It was a bitter ending to what was an outstanding season for the Ryan Cowboys’ football squad.
Last Friday night at Bob Givens Sports Complex, the Cowboys fell to Burns Flat-Dill City, 58-12, in a first-round playoff game.
While the margin of victory was great, the Eagles were the benefactors of some key plays early in the game that kept the Cowboys on their heels most of the night and finally resulted in the big win.
Ryan finishes its first season under Tony Tomberlin at 7-4, while BFDC improved to 6-5 and moves on to face Pioneer-Pleasant Vale in the second round of the Class B playoffs.
Three key events set the tone for the contest – a 90-yard touchdown run after Ryan fumbled deep in BFDC territory, an 84-yard kickoff return by the Eagles after a Ryan score and a successful onside kick recovery by the Eagles to begin the second half.
All of those plays happened at critical moments in the game and helped the Eagles control the contest.
BFDC also possessed some speed on both offense and defense and it stymied the Cowboys most of the night.
The Eagles took the opening kickoff and moved 61 yards in nine plays to take a 6-0 lead at the 8:02 mark in the first quarter. Tracen Poor got the score on a seven-yard run.
The Cowboys were poised to answer the score as they moved from midfield after recovering an Eagle onside kick attempt to the BFDC nine-yard line. However, on a first and goal, the Cowboys fumbled and John Shorter alertly covered it for BFDC at the 10.
On first down talented running back Isaac Tubbs took the pigskin to the house breaking into the Cowboys’ secondary and racing down the left side for a 90-yard score. The run failed for two points, but instead of a lead or a tie for the Cowboys, the Eagles had a 12-0 advantage with six minutes to play in the initial quarter.
Another failed onside kick attempt set the Cowboys up at their own 49 and Ryan moved right down the field in 11 plays and on a fourth and goal, quarterback Grayson Tomberlin scored from five yards out. The two-point conversion failed, but now Ryan trailed by only 12-6 with 1:26 left in the first quarter.
On the kickoff, the Eagles made another pivotal play in the game as Tubbs took the ball at his own 16-yard line and went 84 yards for the touchdown. Poor ran for the two points and the Eagles had increased the lead to 20-6.
The Cowboys fought back and took care of another onside kick attempt by the Eagles to begin the offensive push at the Cowboy 46. Ryan covered the distance in seven plays with Tomberlin taking it in from 21 yards out for the score.
After a penalty on the conversion attempt, the Cowboys tried a pass for the conversion, but it fell incomplete leaving Ryan with a 20-12 deficit with 10:22 to play in the second quarter.
On the next possession, BFDC looked like they would take control of the game driving deep into Ryan territory, but Tubbs fumbled the ball at the Ryan three after a 15-yard gain and Kalen Weldon got the recovery for the Cowboys.
Ryan moved from its own three to the BFDC 46, but a fumble by the Cowboys, which was covered by Andrew Villerreal, set the Cowboys back at the Ryan 40 and three plays later the Cowboys were forced to punt.
The Eagles got through on the punt and blocked it to give them excellent field position at the Ryan 25 with only 1:25 showing on the clock before the half.
The Eagles worked their way to the Ryan four to get a first down stopping the clock with one second to play. Somehow the Eagles got the play off before the clock ran out and Poor found Robert Rush for a four-yard touchdown pass over the middle with no time left. Luis Margerum ran for the two points and the Eagles held a 28-12 halftime advantage.
Beginning the second half the Eagles tried yet another onside kick and this time the Cowboys mishandled it and BFDC got the recovery at midfield. On the fifth play of the drive, Margerum scored from nine yards to extend the lead to 34-12 at the 10:32 mark of the third period.
From this point, the Cowboys simply could not get much going offensively and the Eagles were able to frequently get into the Cowboy secondary for large gains.
After a failed fake punt attempt the Eagles extended the lead with a five-play, 57-yard drive. Margerum capped the drive with a one-yard plunge and Tubbs ran for the two points to put the margin at 42-12 with 8:35 to play in the third quarter.
The Cowboys were forced to punt on the ensuing possession after failing to pick up a first down and the Eagles took over at the Ryan 45. In only four plays the Eagles got a touchdown as Margerum scored his third rushing touchdown of the nine on a five-yard run. Margerum added the two-point conversion and with 5:38 left in the third quarter the Eagles were ready to end the game early with a 50-12 advantage.
Ryan tried to stay alive in the game but an incomplete fourth-down pass gave the Eagles another possession.
From the BFDC 31, the Eagles took the ball for the game-ending score. It took eight plays with the aid of 20 yards of Ryan penalties for the Eagles to cap the drive. It was a five-yard run by Tubbs for the score and the two-point conversion run by Margerum with 1:04 left in the third quarter that ended the game.
Tubbs finished with 209 yards rushing on only 19 carries. Add in the kickoff return and one pass reception and Tubbs finished the night with 290 all-purpose yards.
In his last game for the Cowboys, Skylar Parkhill finished with 90 yards on 15 carries to lead the Ryan offensive attack that was limited to 195 total yards for the contest.
Game in Figures
First Downs 2112
Yards Rushing 42-391 33-172
Yards Passing 3723
Passes 4-5 5-14
Passes Int. By00
Fumbles, Lost2-1 2-1
Punts 0-0 2-17
SCORE BY QUARTERS
BFDC – Tracen Poor 7 run (run failed), 8:02
BFDC- Isaac Tubbs 90 run (run failed), 6:00
RYAN – Grayson Tomberlin 5 run (run failed), 1:26
BFDC – Tubbs 84 kickoff return (Poor run), 1:11
RYAN – Tomberlin 21 run (pass failed), 10:22
BFDC – Robert Rush 4 pass from poor (Luis Margerum run), :00
Cy Sloan Stadium will continue to be the place to be in Waurika on Friday night as the Eagles take on Cherokee in the second round of the Class B playoffs.
Waurika will be looking to advance to the state quarterfinals for the first time since 1996 when they play host to the Chiefs.
Waurika advanced with a 48-0 victory over Cyril in the first round, while Cherokee earned a second-round playoff berth with a 36-16 victory over Turpin.
Much like the Eagles, the Chiefs have exceeded expectations during the 2018 season.
Cherokee was tabbed to finish third in District B-2, but earned the runner-up spot in the district after falling to Pioneer-Pleasant Vale, 58-40, in the final regular season game.
The Eagles were picked to finish third in District B-4, but rolled through the district competition to claim their first district title since 1988. Waurika scored mercy-rule victories over every district opponent except for Wilson.
The third round will be tougher for the team that advances from this encounter.
The winner will take on the winner of Davenport and Weleetka. Davenport, 11-0 on the year, is ranked second in Class B, while Weleetka, with an 8-3 mark, is ranked eighth.
Cherokee at Waurika
Time and Place: Friday at 7:30 p.m. on Norman West Field at Cy Sloan Stadium
Records: Cherokee is 7-4 on the year and was the runner-up in District B-2 with a 4-1 mark in district play. Waurika is 10-0 and was the champion of District B-4 with a 5-0 record.
State Rankings: Waurika is ranked ninth in the Daily Oklahoman’s Class B poll, while the Chiefs are unranked.
Coaches: Bryce Schanbacher is in his 11th season at the helm of the Chiefs and has a 96-52 mark with eight playoff appearances. Joe Allen is the first-year mentor for Waurika and has not lost in 10 games in 2018.
Series History: First meeting
Playoff History: Cherokee is in its 20th appearance in the playoffs with 12 of those coming in eight-man competition. The Chiefs have compiled a 19-17 mark in the playoffs and have won state titles in 2013 and 2010 when the Chiefs competed in Class C. The Chiefs also were state runner-up in 2014. The Chiefs missed the playoffs in 2017 ending a seven-year streak of qualifying for post-season play.
Waurika is in its 28th appearance in post-season play and the fourth time in eight-man play. Waurika has a 27-25-2 playoff record and one state championship in 1951. The Eagles earned their first district title in eight-man competition this season. Waurika will be looking for its 10th quarterfinal appearance in the playoffs win a win against Cherokee.
Team Capsules: Cherokee features a one-two punch on offense led by quarterback Cade Chace and running back Payton Ream. In the team’s win over Turpin, both players rushed for over 100 yards with Ream getting 112 yards and Chace finishing with 146 yards. Both scored two touchdowns in the game. Chace has been splitting time with Rustin James after the starting quarterback suffered a season-ending injury midway through the season. Ream had 124 yards in a loss to Pioneer-Pleasant Vale on the final night of the regular season in a game that settled the District B-2 race. Ream had five touchdowns, rushed for 262 yards and had 131 yards receiving in a wild 82-48 win over Kremlin-Hillsdale. Chace had all three scores in a tense 18-12 overtime win over Ringwood in week nine. The Chiefs are averaging 34.9 points per game on offense, but are surrendering 32 points a game. Cherokee racked up a season-high 678 total yards in the win over Kremlin-Hillsdale. The Chiefs have won five of their last six games.
The Eagles continued what will no doubt be one of the greatest seasons in school history with the first-round playoff win over Cyril. Waurika has the advantage as the district champion of hosting for the second round of the playoffs. If you are looking for impressive numbers by the Eagles, they are scarce because Waurika has ended its games early in nine of the 10 games making it difficult to compile any impressive statistics. Waurika played into the third quarter for only the third time in 2018 against Cyril. Turner Mora, Colton Bryant, and Zac Brown will be counted on in the running game, but Kevin Garcia had one of his best games last week in the first-round victory over Cyril. Aaron Nitka has been a favorite target of Mora when the Eagles have gone to the air. The Eagles have played beyond halftime only three times in 10 games. The Eagles are averaging an astounding 53.4 points a game while giving up only 4.2 points a game.
Outlook: Waurika must come up with another outstanding defensive performance similar to last Friday’s impressive performance against Cyril. But, the Eagles have been dominant on defense most of the year. It should be strength against strength as both teams have been able to score lots of points throughout the season. The Eagles’ quickness on defense should be the determining factor and if Waurika is prepared to handle the offensive onslaught of the Chiefs, they should move on to the quarterfinal round of the Class B playoffs.
The West name is synonymous with sports in Jefferson County. Friday evening fans, friends and former players were on hand at Cy Sloan Memorial stadium to express their appreciation for Coach Norman and Louise West and family for their contributions to both education and sports by naming the Waurika football field “Norman West Memorial Field”.
Norman West graduated from Ryan High School in 1959. He attended and played football at Southeastern State University. In 1963 West graduated from college Since that time he and his wife have spent their lives as educators. Coach West has led sports teams for 39 years. Two of those years were spent in Paoli. Louise has always been by Norman’s side. They even worked track meets together after retirement.
Coach West moved to Waurika in 1965 and served as the head basketball coach for the boys and girls. He also served as the assistant football coach. At that time, there were only two coaches on the coaching staff. During fifteen seasons, his teams had a 75% winning record.
Over the years, West also coached track and even helped revive the baseball team during the 1980s. He pioneered the concept of a seventh grade only team. This concept is still used in junior high athletics across the area today.
For several years, West served as the middle school principal.
He chaired the Waurika Summer Youth program for 11 years and as president of the Southern 8 Conference for 12years.
West spent several years as the Waurika Athletic Director. During that time he oversaw the building of the track and baseball facility.
Norman and Louise have two sons: Quana and Byron.
Quana is married to Sharon. He is a school administrator in Wichita Falls.
Byron is the head football coach and athletic director at Henrietta High School.
The Wests also have five grandsons: Hayden, Zack, Parker, Grady, and Quade. Their two great-grandsons are Reece and Ramsey.
During Friday evening’s ceremony, State Senator Chris Kidd presented Coach West with a citation from the state senate.
The field was painted with words “Norman West Memorial Field” by former Head Coach and accomplished artist, Glenn Howard.
Athletic Director Everett Hodges presented not only the initial idea for the honor to be bestowed upon coach West, but also served as master of ceremonies for the night’s events.
Mr. Nat Lunn, Waurika High School Principal supported the project from the beginning as well as Waurika Schools Superintendent, CodySimmons.
At the end of the ceremony, Superintendent Cody Simmons unveiled a new sign at the east end of the field designating the facility as “Cy Sloan Memorial Stadium and Norman West Memorial Field.”
The Waurika Eagles overcame a somewhat sluggish start to the first and second half of last Friday’s contest with Empire to claim a 68-22 victory over the Bulldogs.
The win earned the Eagles their first district title since 2016 and will ensure the squad of two home playoff games.
The first game will be tomorrow night at Cy Sloan Stadium when Waurika will play host to Cyril in a rematch of last year’s first-round contest. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.
Empire took the opening kickoff and moved 66 yards in 11 plays to get the first score of the game.
Rodolfo Martinez found a wide-open Lucas Contreras on a 23-yard touchdown pass and Martinez ran for the two points to put Empire in front, 8-0, with 7:58 to play in the first quarter.
The score by the Bulldogs apparently ignited the Eagles as they took the ensuing kickoff and in just two plays traveled 56 yards for the game-tying score. Turner Mora connected with Colton Bryant on a 43-yard pass play for the touchdown. Zac Brown added the two-point conversion to tie the game at 8-8.
Empire looked like it would answer the Eagle challenge as they drove the ball deep inside Waurika territory before a fourth down stop ended the threat at the Eagle 16.
On Waurika’s next possession the Eagles could not pick up a first down and on fourth down Empire blocked the Waurika punt and took possession at the Eagle 12.
The Bulldogs, however, handed the ball right back to Waurika as they fumbled at the Eagle 10 and the Waurika offense was back on the field.
The Eagles looked poised for the go-ahead score as a long drive ended the first quarter, but early in the second quarter the drive ended on a failed fourth down play just inside Empire’s 20-yard line.
Empire gambled on its next drive and it proved to be a costly one. On a fourth and short the Bulldogs elected to go for it but were stopped giving the Eagles excellent field position at the Bulldog 32-yard line.
In just three plays the Eagles got the go-ahead score as Mora found Kevin Garcia for a 33-yard touchdown pass. Mora ran for the two points and Waurika’s lead expanded to 16-8 with 5:47 to play in the half.
Another failed fourth down attempt on Empire’s next drive set Waurika up inside Bulldog territory at the 41-yard line.
On the first play, Mora swept to the left side and scooted down the sideline 41 yards for the score. The try for two failed, but Waurika held a 22-8 lead with 4:11 left before intermission.
The Eagles were not through lighting up the scoreboard in the quarter as Empire failed on yet another fourth down attempt and gave Waurika the ball at the Empire 37.
Waurika could not move and was in punt formation on fourth down when Mora from punt formation took the ball and after being forced to reverse his direction, picked up 12 yards to keep the drive alive.
After an incomplete pass, Mora spotted a wide open Garcia for a 25-yard touchdown pass. Bryant added the two points and Waurika held a commanding 30-8 advantage heading to the locker room.
Empire threatened to tighten the game early in the second half. After stopping Waurika’s opening drive, the Bulldogs went 59 yards on three plays for a touchdown. The big play was a 38-yard scoring run by Peyton Booth and Brandon Mendenall caught the two-point conversion pass from Martinez to make it a 30-16 game with 8:52 left in the third quarter.
Again the Eagles shook off the uninspired effort and after a failed onside kick by Empire Waurika took the pigskin and traveled 49 yards on four plays. Mora found a wide open Edwin Garcia for a 35-yard scoring pass. After Bryant ran for the two-point conversion, the Eagles held a 38-16 advantage with 7:46 left in the third quarter.
Empire did not fold, however, and drove all the way to the Waurika 11-yard line before a fourth down effort resulted in a four-yard loss.
The Eagles took the ball and marched the length of the field helped a pass interference penalty and two unsportsmanlike conduct fouls on Empire. The score came on a 14-yard pass from Mora to Aaron Nitka to extend the Waurika lead to 44-16 with 11:19 to play in the game.
After another failed attempt on fourth down, Waurika took over at the Bulldog 27. On the first play, Brown found paydirt on a 27-yard scamper to the end zone. Bryant ran for the two points and the Eagles were firmly in command with a 52-16 lead.
The Bulldogs’ final score of the night came on a 30-yard touchdown pass from Martinez to Meray Weber. This put the margin at 52-22 with 5:44 to play in the game.
Empire attempted another onside kick, but this time Mora picked up the ball and sprinted 50 yards for a touchdown. Matt Arriolla ran for the two points and Waurika held a 60-22 lead with 5:35 left in the game.
The Bulldogs could not move on the next drive and punted to the Eagles. Brown capped the drive with a 29-yard run and after Bryant ran for the two-point conversion the game ended on the mercy rule with 3:14 left in the game.
With the Eagles getting a short field most of the night, the top ball carrier for Waurika, Mora, had only 73 yards on the ground, but the talented quarterback threw for 189 yards on the night. Brown added 64 yards and Bryant had 50 to help the Eagle offense.
EAGLE FLIGHTS: Waurika now holds a 21-11 advantage in the series with Empire that started in 1974 when Empire began playing football…The two schools have split the two meetings in eight-man competition…The 68 points scored by the Eagles is the most in the history of the series with the Bulldogs….The 22 points scored by the Bulldogs was the most for Empire in a losing cause in games with Waurika….The 46-point margin of victory for Waurika is tied for the third highest margin of victory in the 32 games with Empire…The game turned a bit ugly in the second half as the Empire bench was called for a total of three unsportsmanlike conduct penalties and the head coach for the Bulldogs being ejected last in the game….This will be the fourth straight playoff appearance for Waurika after going 14 years without a playoff appearance….Waurika head coach Joe Allen is the first coach in school history to compile an undefeated regular season in the first year as a head coach.
Game in Figures
First Downs 119
Yards Rushing 45-214 37-203
Yards Passing 61189
Passes 3-12 6-13
Passes Int. By00
Fumbles, Lost2-2 0-0
SCORE BY QUARTERS
EMPIRE – Lucas Contreras 23 pass from Rodolfo Martinez (Martinez run), 7:58, 1st Quarter
WAURIKA – Colton Bryant 43 pass from Turner Mora (Zachary Brown run), 7:06, 1st Quarter
WAURIKA – Kevin Garcia 33 pass from Mora (Mora run), 5:47, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Mora 41 run (run failed), 4:11, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Garcia 25 pass from Mora (Bryant run), 1:00, 2nd Quarter
EMPIRE – Peyton Booth 38 run (Brandon Mendenall pass from Martinez), 8:52, 3rd Quarter
WAURIKA – Edwin Garcia 35 pass from Mora (Bryant run), 7:46, 3rd Quarter
WAURIKA – Aaron Nitka 14 pass from Mora (run failed), 11:19, 4th Quarter
WAURIKA – Brown 27 run (Bryant run), 9:49, 4th Quarter