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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Cowgirl 3,200-Meter Relay Squad Sets School Mark

In only their second outing of the outdoor track season, the Ryan Cowgirls’ 3,200-meter relay team turned in a record-breaking performance at the Cache Invitational last Thursday at Cache High School.

 The relay team of Lilybet Harmon, Lily York, Holland Carter and Juliet Spangler smashed the school record with a time of 11:56.76 – besting the old mark by nearly 11 seconds that was set in the 1990 Southern Eight Conference track meet.

 The Cowgirls, however, could manage only a fourth place finish in the 3,200-meter relay in a tough meet that featured a large and small school division.

 The small school division was comprised of schools from Class 4A down to Class A. Marlow claimed the team title with 137 points – well ahead of runner up Rush Springs that finished with 96 points.

 Ryan tied Hobart for ninth place in the small school division with both teams earning 20 points in the meet.

 Spangler was the only Cowgirl competitor to score in any other events in the meet.

 The Cowgirl sophomore was third in the 1,600 meters with a time of 6:24.33. That time is the third best in school history with Spangler owning the two fastest times in the event.

 Spangler also claimed a bronze medal in the 3,200 meter run with a time of 13:45.36.

 That time is the second best mark in the event in school history and Spangler owns the school record at 13:38.16.

 The Cowgirls’ 1,600-meter relay team of Harmon, York, Carter and Spangler did not score in the meet finishing in seventh place, however, their recorded time of 5:21.37 is thought to be the second best time in school history and just six seconds off the school record of 5:15.0 set in the 1990 Southern Eight Conference meet.

 Other competitors included Carter in the 800 meters who also finished one spot out of earniing points, while Harmon finished 11th in the event.

 York was eighth in the 3,200 meters.

 Sadie Guzman and Justyce Keith also competed for the Cowgirls in the sprint events.

 The Cowgirls will be in action again tomorrow at the Stratford Invitational and will compete on April 13 at the Southern Oklahoma 8-Man Invitational hosted by Waurika.

Eagle Thinclads Sweep Three Relays to Win Waurika Meet Title


….Lady Eagles Earn Runner Up Honors Led By Smith’s Performance

Behind three gold medal performances in the relays, the Waurika boys’ track squad claimed the team title in the Waurika Eight-Man Invitational held last Friday at the local track.

 The Eagles rolled up 141 points by taking the title in three of the four relays in the meet. Fox was the runner up with 119 points.

 The Lady Eagles also had an impressive outing as they claimed runner up team honors with 94 points behind team champion Empire’s 134 points.

The 3,200-meter team of Gustavo Gomez, Octavio Gomez, Bryson Hernandez and Colton Bryant may have turned in the most impressive performance. Their time of 9:57.18 in the event was nearly a full minute ahead of second place Fox.

 The 1,600-meter relay team consisting of Turner Mora, Kevin Garcia, Cache Arellano and Bryant also took top honors with a time of 3:52.81 which outdistanced second-place Empire by 18 seconds.

 The 800-meter relay squad also earned top honors but the race was a bit closer as all five teams finished within seven seconds of one another.

 Waurika’s 800-meter relay team of Mora, Bryant, Nicolas Alvardo and Garcia edged out Empire with a time of 1:39.37, while the Bulldogs posted a time of 1:41.25.

 Individually, the Eagles also had some outstanding performances as four different Eagles claimed gold medals in their events.

 In the 3,200 meter run O. Gomez took first place with a time of 12:54.09. His teammate, Hernandez, took the silver medal in the race with a time of 13:17.16.

 The Eagles also racked up the points in the 1,600 meter run by claiming the top three places in the event.

 C. Arellano was the gold medal winner with a time of 5:41.09, while Hernandez finished second with a time of 5:57.40. Garcia earned the bronze medal with a time of 5:59.01.

 Waurika also had multiple placers in the 400 meters. Mora earned first place with a time of 54.0 – his best time of the season. G. Gomez was third in the event with a time of 61.8.

 The final gold-medal performance for the Eagles came in the 800 meter run as G. Gomez recorded a time of 2:28.32.

 Mora also earned a silver medal in the long jump with a leap of 19-2.

 Bryant placed sixth in the high jump with a leap of 5-2.

 Rounding out the scorers for the Eagles was Garcia’s fourth-place finish in the 200 meters with a time of 24.19.

 The Lady Eagle thinclads were led by the performance of Asia Smith. She accounted for 36 of the team’s 94 points with two gold medals and two silver medals.

 Smith won the 800 meter run with a time of 2:47.51 and also claimed the gold medal in the high jump with a leap of 4-6.

 In the 3,200 meter run, Smith’s time of 14:02.25 was good for second place. She was also second in the 1,600 meters with a time of 6:45.32.

 Madison Roberson had an outstanding day in the shot put and discus. Not only did she claim the gold medal in both events, but she also set meet records with her performances.

 Roberson claimed the title in the shot put with a toss of 36-5, while the Lady Eagles’ Landry Forsyth also scored with a sixth place finish.

 In the discus, Roberson recorded a throw of 89-9 and Oliva Ralls also scored in the discus with a sixth place finish.

 The Lady Eagle 800-meter relay team of Kameron Ziecek, Kaci Reynolds, Dallas Fristoe and Sara Ballard earned fourth place with a time of 2:10.87.

 Ballard also earned third place in the 100 meters. Her time of 14.07 was good enough to earn the bronze medal. She also was the runner up in the long jump with a leap of 14-4.

 In the high jump, the Lady Eagles had two other placers behind Smith’s winning performance. Ballard Lexie Streeter finished second in the event with a leap of 4-4 and Ballard was fourth with a leap of 4-2.

 Ziecek also placed in two events. She was fifth in the 400 meters with a 76.93 clocking and sixth in the 200 meters with a time of 31.31.

 The boys’ and girls’ junior high squads also competed in the meet. The Lady Eagles finished tied for second in the meet with 98 points, just behind team champion Bray-Doyle’s 102 points.

 The Eagles finished tied with Alex for fourth place with 36 points. Fox won the junior high boys’ title with 134 points.

 Tallen Mora and Liberti Simmons led the way for the Lady Eagles.

 Mora won gold medals in the 400 meters and the long jump, while Simmons finished with a gold medal in the 110 meter hurdles.

 Simmons also had silver-medal performances in the 300 meter hurdles and the high jump and finished fifth in the long jump.

 Mora was a silver medal winner in the 100 meters and a bronze medalist in the 200 meters.

 Alana Lewis won silver medals in the shot put and discus, while Riley Howell took a bronze medal in the shot put.

 Other placers for the Lady Eagles in the junior high division were: Bailey Romero, fourth in the 200 meters and the long jump and Mackenzie Horton fourth in the discus and fifth in the shot put.

 The junior high boys were led by Trent Arellano. He earned three silver medals and one bronze medal in the meet.

 T. Arellano was second in the long jump, 400 meters and 200 meters and finished third in the 100 meters. He was the only medal winner for the Eagles.

 Other placers for the junior boys included Nicolas Wilson, who finished fourth in the 200 meters and J.J. Crank, who was sixth in the same event.

 Last Thursday, the high school squads also competed in the annual Gary Readnour Memorial Invitational at Wynnewood.

 The relay squads led the way in this meet, too, but the competition was a bit tougher.

 The 800-meter relay squad of Mora, Garcia, Bryant and Alvarado finished second with a time of 1:38.88. The time is a season-best in the event.

 In the 1,600-meter relay, the Eagles also earned the silver medal as Mora, Bryant, Garcia and Alvarado turned in a time of 3:49.56, which is also the best time recorded by the Eagles in the event this season.

The 3,200-meter relay squad of Bryant, C. Arellano, Mora and O. Gomez was able to earn the bronze medal with a time of 9:45.87. This was also the squad’s best time of the season.

 Mora finished second in the long jump with a leap of 19-5.

 Other placers in the meet for Waurika were Bryant in the high jump with a leap of 5-4 and Hernandez in the 3,200 meter run with a time of 12:14.27.

 For the Lady Eagle thinclads, Roberson continued her impressive season in the shot put and discus. She earned the gold medal in the shot put with a toss of 36-10. Her throw of 89-10 in the discus was good enough for fourth place.

 Roberson’s performance recorded in the meet in the shot put is among the top marks in Class A this season.

 Streeter, Smith and Ballard all placed in the high jump for the Lady Eagles.

 Streeter earned the silver medal with a leap of 4-6, while Smith was fifth and Ballard was sixth in the event.

 Smith also placed in the 400 meters and the 1,600 meters. She earned the silver medal in the 1,600 meters with a time of 6:34.21. Her time of 70.18 in the 400 meters was good enough for sixth place.


Ballard also placed in the long jump. Her best performance of the day of 14-0.5 placed her fifth among the competitors in the meet.

 The 800-meter relay team of Reynolds, Fristoe, Ballard and Zeicek finished third with a time of 2:12.

 Reynolds, Streeter, Smth and Fristoe comprised the 3,200-meter squad that also finished third with a time of 12:36.55.

 No team scores were kept at the Wynnewood meet.

 Waurika’s next action on the track will be Saturday (weather permitting) as they host the annual Red River Invitational which will feature teams from Classes A to 3A. Events will begin at 9:30 a.m.

Cowgirls’ Carter Claims Gold Medal at Elgin Invitational


Despite having only five competitors the Ryan Cowgirls finished in fifth place in the tough Elgin Invitational Track Meet last Thursday.

 The Cowgirls amassed 68 points in the small school division which consisted of schools from Class 3A to Class A. Hollis, a Class 2A school, won the meet with 135 points.

 And, this small contingent of Cowgirl thinclads had a memorable day in the meet that replaced the canceled Stratford meet that was originally on the Cowgirl track schedule.

 Holland Carter led the Cowgirls with a gold medal in the 800 meters. Her time of 3:01.3 was impressive considering the windy conditions.

 Lilybet Harmon earned a bronze medal in the 800 meters with a time of 3:15.27.

 The other highlight of the day came in the 1,600 meter relay. While the Cowgirls managed only a fourth place finish in the event, the squad set a school record with a time of 5:12.17, besting the previous school record mark of 5:15.0 set in the 1990 Southern Eight Conference meet.

 The 1,600 meter relay team consists of Carter, Harmon, Lily York and Juliet Spangler.

 The same group of girls earned a silver medal in the 3,200 meter relay with a time of 12:22.37 – which was well short of the school mark this relay team set earlier this season at Cache.

 The distance races are definitely the strength of the Cowgirls this season as Spangler and York added to the point total with high finishes in the 3,200 meters and the 1,600 meters.

 Spangler earned a silver medal in both events. Her time of 6:28.25 is behind her own school record time of 6:16.82 and is the fifth best in school history.

York was right behind her teammate and earned a bronze medal with a time of 6:31.45, which put her at sixth on the school record chart in the 1,600 meters.

 Spangler and York also finished second and third, respectively, in the 3,200 meters. Spangler turned in a time of 14:15.37, while York finished the race with a time of 14:57.55. Both were well back of the winning time of 13:12.65.

 This meet had a unique format in that participants from schools in all classes ran together in each event. The 3,200 meter relay team actually ran a better time than the Lawton MacArthur and Lawton High squads.

 The 68 points scored by the team in the meet was the second highest point total by a Cowgirl track team in school history.

 The Cowgirls will try to improve on their early season performances tomorrow (Friday) at the Waurika Eight-Man Invitational Meet. Field events begin at 9:30 a.m., while the running events will get under way at 10 a.m.

Awards Given To Ryan Athletes At All-Sports Banquet

Ryan Seniors

Cowboy and Cowgirl high school athletes were feted Monday night at the annual All-Sports Banquet held at the Ryan High School cafeteria.

 Two senior athletes were named overall outstanding athletes for the school year – Mackenzie Lewis and Dawson Tomberlin.

 These two awards are voted on by each sport’s head coach and are based on athletic and academic achievement in the 2017-18 school year.

 Several awards from each sports were also handed out during the evening.

Boys Basketball Photo By Sheree Hanson

 Tomberlin was selected as the most valuable player for the Cowboy football squad for the past season. He was a valuable asset on both sides of the ball and provided leadership to coach Stan Mueggenborg’s team that finished 6-5 and advanced to the first round of the playoffs.

Part of the Ryan Football Team Photo By Sheree Hanson
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 Tomberlin also set a school record for the longest interception return – a 94-yard return against Bray-Doyle.

 Two of Ryan’s top cross country runners were honored during the banquet. Juliet Spangler and Holland Carter were selected as co-most valuable players.

Ryan Girls Track Team Photo By Sheree Hanson

Holland, a junior, set several school marks in various meets during the season and Spangler has been a two-year state qualifier for the Cowgirls in cross country.

 Both runners were instrumental in the Cowgirls’ first meet championship for coach Steve Spangler last fall at the Waurika Invitational.

 Rounding out the awards for the fall sports season came in fast-pitch softball.

Fast Pitch Softball Photo By Sheree Hanson

 The Cowgirls, coached by S. Spangler had their most successful season in school history as they recorded 16 wins on the season.

 For her efforts on the diamond, Emilee Martin was selected as the team’s most valuable player. Abbie Bolin was named the offensive player of the year for the Cowgirls, while Sadie Guzman came away with the defensive player of the year.

 It was a tough season on the hardwood for the Cowboys as they managed only five wins on the season for coach Judd Matthes.

 Skyler Parkhill, a junior for the Cowboys, was honored as the defensive player of the year, while first-year varsity standout Grayson Tomberlin was named the offensive player of the year.

Boys Basketball Photo By Sheree Hanson

 The Cowgirl basketball team showed marked improvement in the 2018 season despite having only seven players most of the year and only one senior on the squad.

The Cowgirls won only eight games, but it was the most wins by a Cowgirl squad since 2014.

Girls Basketball Photo By Sheree Hanson

Lily York was the top scorer on Coach Spangler’s squad and for her performance over the season she was named the most valuable player.

 Also honored for the Cowgirl basketball team were Samantha Good as the offensive player of the year and J. Spangler as the defensive player of the year.

Ryan competed in three spring sports – baseball, slow-pitch softball and girls’ track. All the squads recently completed their seasons.

The slow-pitch team coached by Mueggenborg struggled to get games in because of weather and cancellations and finished with a 4-8 mark.

Slow Pitch Softball Photo By Sheree Hanson

Leading the way was Lewis, who was selected as the most valuable player on the team.

Bolin also snagged the offensive player of the year award for the slow-pitch team. Good was named as the defensive player of the year.

Coach Matthes’ baseball squad also had a tough year finishing with a 4-13 mark.

The offensive player of the year honors when to G. Tomberlin who set the school record for most runs batted in during a game with Grandfield. He was the leading hitter for the team.

Camron Villerreal was tabbed as the defensive player of the year and Trey Bryant was named the most improved player for the Cowboy nine.

Coach Spangler’s girls’ track squad was a small one – only four competitors. However, the Cowgirls had a memorable season setting new school marks in the 1,600-meter relay and the 3,200-meter relay.

Two of the keys to the success of the team – J. Spangler and Carter – were honored at the banquet. J. Spangler was named the most valuable player, while Carter was awarded the teammate of the year award.

Conference All-Star game will feature Ryan and Waurika roundballers


A number of players from the Waurika and Ryan basketball squads were honored by the Southern Eight Conference coaches recently.

Madison Roberson of Waurika was named the most valuable player in the conference for 2018. She led the Lady Eagles in scoring and rebounding and they claimed the Southern Eight Conference regular season crown with a perfect 5-0 mark.

Asia Smith was also an all-conference selection for the Lady Eagles. Smith was the second leading scorer and rebounder for Waurika.

Lily York, a sophomore for the Ryan Cowgirls, was selected as the co-offensive player of the year along with Grandfield’s Matti Clemmer.

Another sophomore, Juliet Spangler, was also named to represent Ryan on the all-conference squad.

The defensive player of the year honors went to Hollie Babel of Geronimo. She helped lead the Lady Blue Jays to a 14-15 record including a district title.

On the boys’ side, Waurika’s Cache Arellano was named to the all-conference team. Arellano was the scoring leader for the Eagles averaging 10.3 points a game and was also the leading rebounder averaging 8.3 rebounds a game.

No other boys from Waurika or Ryan were named to the squad all-conference squad.

The most valuable player of the conference for 2018 was Geronimo’s D’Marcus Crabtree. Crabtree was the ringleader on an experienced Geronimo squad that swept all its Southern Eight opponents during the regular season to claim the conference title.

The offensive player of the year was Geronimo’s Luke Riley.

Riley and Crabtree led the Bluejays to an outstanding season. The Blue Jays finished with a district title and were third in the Apache Tournament and the consolation champions at the Comanche County Tournament.

Geronimo closed the season with a 21-8 record after dropping a one-point decision to Sterling in the consolation bracket finals of the regional tourney. Riley led the Blue Jays in scoring against Sterling with 11 points, while Crabtree finished with 10 points in the season-ending loss.

Securing the defensive player of the year honors was Big Pasture’s Austin Frieling. The Rangers won a district title and fell to Lookeba-Sickles in the regional tourney finals last Saturday night but remain alive for another week.

Big Pasture opens area tourney play today (Thursday) at Cache and they will face Fox.

The Rangers managed a 4-1 mark in the Southern Eight Conference which was good for runner up honors.

The annual Southern Eight Conference All-Star game will be held Monday (February 26) at Temple. The girls’ contest will begin at 6:30 p.m. with the boys’ game to follow.

All the all-conference squad members will be competing in the game along with players selected as a conference all-star.

Representing the Cowgirls in addition to York and Spangler will be Samantha Good and the lone Cowgirl senior, Kenzie Lewis.

Joining Roberson and Smith from Waurika will be Lexie Streeter.

The girls’ team will be coached by Ryan’s Steve Spangler and Waurika’s Kalee Baxter.

Three Eagles will join their teammate Arellano in the game. They are Seth Cathey, Kevin Garcia and Turner Mora.

Representing the Cowboys in the game will be Dawson Tomberlin, a senior for the Cowboys, and junior Skylar Parkhill.

The conference was down somewhat in basketball this season especially on the girls’ side.

No girls’ team finished with a winning record with Geronimo leading the pack with 14 wins on the season. Big Pasture girls managed a 10-17 record and were the only other girls’ squad to record at least 10 wins.

Three boys’ teams posted winning records for the 2018 campaign. Big Pasture is the only team still alive and will finish with a winning record. Geronimo posted the best record of the conference teams with a 21-8 mark, while Grandfield also had a winning season at 14-11.

The conference consisted of only six schools this past year – Temple, Big Pasture, Geronimo, Ryan, Waurika and Grandfield. Frederick will join the Southern Eight Conference next season.

Waurika Softball Seniors Honored at final home game of season

(l-r) Destiny Barnes, Madison Roberson, Madison Christian, and Olivia Ralls Photo by Tonya Forsyth

 by Katelyn Washburn and EagleTalk staff  

WHS Senior softball players played their last home game Tuesday, September 11 against the Ryan Cowgirls.  While the game ended in a loss for the Lady Eagles, the team still celebrated by recognizing its four senior players:  Destiny Barnes, Madison Christian, Olivia Ralls, and Madison Roberson.

Barnes has played softball for WHS since she was a freshman, and has mixed emotions about the season coming to an end. “I am happy it is our last home game and upset we lost.  I’m kind of sad that it is over.”  Christian agreed, stating “I’m happy that it was the last home game, but sad we lost, and [the season] is almost over. The game didn’t go as well as we wanted.”

As is true with most events during a senior year, senior Lady Eagles girls had mixed emotions about the season wrapping up.  Olivia Ralls was also happy that it was their last home game, but added, “I’m sad knowing that I will never be able to play again.”

Madison Roberson summed it up best, saying, “It was sad, but a good night. We may have lost, but we all were in high spirits and that’s really all that matters to me in softball.”

Head softball coach Sloan Roberson spoke fondly of the four Lady Eagles who will be leaving WHS after this school year.  “Our last home game was awesome,” Coach Roberson stated.  “We honored four seniors for their hard work and dedication during their years of softball.”  

Two of the seniors, Madison Roberson and Destiny Barnes, were career Lady Eagles.  “Madison Roberson was a 4 year starter for the Lady Eagles and a huge asset to the team.  She held pitcher, catcher 3rd base, 2nd base and short stop duties throughout her career.   She also had the one of the highest batting averages on the team for each of the four years.

Destiny Barnes was also a 4 year starter for the Lady Eagles.  She was a huge asset on the mound. She was penned the name ‘Hoover’ for her amazing skills at 3rds base as well,” Coach Roberson stated. 

Roberson also spoke well of the two seniors who came to WHS in the middle of their high school softball careers.  

“Madison Christian played for the Lady Eagles for 3 years.  She was always there to root for her teammates and did anything and played any position she was asked.  She was an amazing center fielder and was always there with a positive attitude.

“Olivia Ralls was a 2 year Lady Eagle softball player.  She came to us from Texas and was always willing to give 110% every time she stepped on the field.  We will miss her enthusiasm and team spirit”

Trend of Increased Participation in High School Athletics May Be Changing in the Future


While the statistics from nearly three decades show increased participation in high school athletics, that trend may be about to change.

An earlier article documented some of the reasons participation has been increasing, but let’s examine the possibility that the trend may reverse in the next few years.

In an article published in 2015 it was noted that over 70% of children drop out of organized sports by the age of 13.

There are some legitimate reasons for this as competition begins to increase as a child begins to compete at the junior high and high school level therefore eliminating the kids who may not be as gifted in the athletic arena.

What are some of the reasons for kids to quit sports? Here are five reasons that are bound to influence participation at the high school level at some points.

1. Playing sports is no longer fun.

The simple fact is that as kids enter junior high and high school there is increased pressure to win. In kids’ sports, that is not always the case, unless you have a parent or coach that has lost perspective on the purpose of kids’ sports. As mentioned above, the kids who may not be as gifted are not going to enjoy the experience nearly as much as the pressure to win increases.

2. They have lost ownership in the experience.

This is a most interesting reason and much of the reason for this is the influence of the video game industry. Once a kid gets a controller in his/her hands, they are in charge of the experience. If they are playing a sports video game, they can choose their own players and put together a customized team. They determine how much playing time each person gets. They choose a strategy. They are in control of the experience. Obviously, if they participate in kids’ sports or stay around until the junior high or high school level, coaches are in control of their experience for the most part. Anyone with some age on them will have to let this reason sink in a bit because before the video game experience, this was no doubt not a factor in someone deciding not to compete in sports.

3. They don’t get enough playing time.

This is certainly a factor at the kids’ sports level. It is certainly all right to play to win at any level, but winning at all cost – including not including all the players – at the younger levels is not all right. Once students reach junior and particularly high school, competitiveness becomes a greater issue and the best players should be put on the field, court or diamond to help ensure success. However, when a team is getting drilled, it is appropriate to “clear the bench” and give everyone some playing time.

4. They are afraid to make mistakes.

Grade school kids want to please their parents and their coaches. They begin to find some acceptance when they succeed. On the negative side, overzealous parents and/or coaches can influence kids to become timid. Their will to try is diminished by the reaction of the parents.

5. They feel disrespected.

A 2014 study of characteristics that make up a great coach reveals the number one thing that gives a coach that label is “respect and encouragement.” Kids today have it tough. Many kids have a difficult life because of family circumstances. Some kids are in very difficult environments. They need an adult to come alongside them and care about them and encourage them. That doesn’t mean that a coach has to be soft. Kids are primarily looking for an adult that will invest in their lives.

What are the answers to these factors? Probably the most important one is that parents, coaches and administrators have the responsibility to create an environment that serves the needs, values and priorities of the kids – not just the adults.

This can be accomplished by communicating better with kids, understanding what they want out of the experience of participating in sports and then trying as much as possible to give some ownership of the experience to the participates.

Other articles bring up other reasons why participation in sports may be impacted.

Skyrocketing costs, sport specialization and the need for coaches to have more training has impacted the participation in kids’ sports which will at some point impact high school sports.

Traveling teams have been the number one reason for increased costs for families.

There is a movement to try and overcome the impact of sport specialization. Professional sports leagues have actually been working together to encourage kids to play more than one sport.

“The best athlete is a kid who played multiple sports,” said Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred in a recent article. Manfred spoke with commissioners of the National Basketball Association, National Football League and National Hockey League to come to this conclusion.

One other disturbing trend is watching high school athletes – many of them very talented – suddenly decide to give up a sport when they hit their junior or senior years.

Burnout has caused this to happen with many kids. They have been playing the sport competitively since a very early age and are simply tired of it.

 Coaches and parents would be wise to help guard against this as kids grow up.

 Next Week: One Sport Suffers From Declining Participation Above All

Cowboys Set to Battle Snyder for Season Opener


The 99th season of high school football at Ryan is slated to begin tomorrow night (Friday) when the Snyder Cyclones invade the Bob Givens Sports Complex.

 Kickoff for the season opener for both teams is set for 7:30 p.m.

 This will be the earliest season opener in school history as the contest is part of Zero Week in high school football in Oklahoma.

 Teams can elect to start the season one week early and forego a second scrimmage date. The advantage is teams that play during Zero Week will have a week off during the regular season.

 Snyder ended the Cowboys’ season a year ago at Ryan as the Cyclones took advantage of numerous Ryan turnovers to post a 38-8 victory.

It was the first year returning to the playoffs for Ryan after a two-year absence and the Cowboys of first-year head coach Tony Tomberlin are looking to improve on last season’s 6-5 record.

Tomberlin will be taking over for long-time head coach Stan Mueggenborg after serving as an assistant for the veteran coach the past 12 years.

The outlook for the Cowboys for 2018 is guarded. The coaching staff faces the tall task of replacing six of eight starters on the defensive side of the ball.

 However, quarterback Grayson Tomberlin returns for his sophomore campaign after starting all 11 games a year ago as a freshman.

Joining Tomberlin, last season’s district newcomer of the year, in the backfield will be talented senior and all-district running back Skyler Parkhill.

Both players will give Ryan a solid nucleus from which to build on offense.

Tomberlin finished last season with 638 yards rushing and 12 touchdowns. He also threw for 731 yards on 44 completions and 12 touchdown passes.

Parkhill was the second leading rusher last season with 620 yards on 93 carries and five rushing touchdowns.

The Cowboys will feature a freshman in the backfield with Caleb Ferrin expected to start at the other running back position.

Kalen Weldon will return at one end for the Cowboys and Andrew Villerreal will move from the backfield to the other end position.

Two seniors, Sam Brown and Justin Williams, along with sophomore Trey Bryant will be counted on to try to open up running lanes for the backs and give Tomberlin time to find receivers.

The Cowboys will feature a bit more wide-open attack with more spread offense and implementing the pistol formation.

 Defensively, things are a bit unsettled. Not only will there be six new starters, but coming out of last week’s scrimmage, there are still some battles going on for starting positions.

Pacen Wiest and Bryant are battling for a starting role at nose guard and the defensive end positions are still up for grabs in the 3-2 defense.

The defense will need to mature quickly as Snyder, the Cowboys’ first opponent, will bring a potent offensive attack that will feature one of the state’s top sprinters in Trevor Evans. He was the state champion in Class A in the 400 meters and the runner up in the 100 meters last spring.

“I would say at this point the offense is a step ahead of the defense,” Tomberlin noted heading into this week’s final few days of practice.

“On defense we are still trying to figure some things out,” Tomberlin said.

Tomberlin was not particularly pleased with the Cowboys’ scrimmage with Maud last week.

 “We have a lot of improving to do, but we will watch film and we will get better,” said Tomberlin.

 “We are looking forward to some things and we are trying to get some excitement back in the program. The kids’ attitudes are good and we are lifting every day and they are getting stronger,” Tomberlin added.

Snyder will provide a tough challenge for the Cowboys’ season opener. The Cyclones are picked fourth District B-3, but ahead of them are Carnegie, Alex and Cyril – all top 15 teams in the preseason.

 Tomberlin will be assisted by first-year coach Austin Masoner.

Eagles Post Second Straight Shutout for 2-0 Start

Photo by Adam Brinson

It has not happened often, but for the second straight week to open the season the Waurika Eagles’ flexed their defensive muscle in shutting out their opponent.

The Eagles rolled to a 52-0 victory over Grandfield last Friday night at Cy Sloan Stadium.

Waurika has opened the season by shutting out the two opponents and that has not happened since the 1975 season and it has only happened eight other times since Waurika began playing football in 1919.

The defense will likely get a much tougher test Friday night when the Eagles travel to Carnegie to battle the Wildcats.

Carnegie did not play last week and comes into the contest with a 1-1 mark with a loss to Seiling and win over Mountain View-Gotebo.

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

In last Friday’s contest, the Eagles got off to a slow start with only a single score in the first quarter.

Kevin Garcia busted loose for a 30-yard scoring run and Waurika was up 6-0 with 4:03 to play and that is how the score stayed for the remainder of the first quarter.

The Eagles got things going, however, in the second quarter as they exploded for 46 points in route to ending the game at the half because of the 45-point mercy rule.

Turner Mora opened the scoring in the second quarter for the Eagles with a six-yard rushing touchdown. Mora added the two-point conversion giving Waurika a 14-0 advantage just 31 seconds into the second quarter.

Colton Bryant became the third Eagle to score as he scampered 20 yards for a score. The two-point conversion run failed leaving Waurika with a 20-0 advantage with 9:22 to play in the first half.

The Eagles took to the air for the next score with Hunter Wesberry catching a 28-yard touchdown pass from Mora. Bryant ran for the two points and Waurika had opened a 28-0 lead with 8:32 left before intermission.

Mora got his second rushing touchdown of the night for the next Waurika score. Mora covered 13 yards for the score and Wesberry converted the two-point conversion and Waurika was pulling away at 38-0 with 6:04 left in the half.

The next score came on the defensive side of the ball as Bryant picked off the Grandfield quarterback on the ensuing drive after the Eagle score and raced 30 yards for the touchdown. Bryant ran for the two points to put Waurika on top, 44-0.

The final score came just 29 seconds before the half as Bryant galloped 78 yards for the touchdown. Matt Arriola ran for the two points to fashion the final margin.

Thanks to that big run, Bryant ended the night with 102 yards rushing on only four carries.

Mora was effective in the passing game with five completions in six attempts and 143 yards. Garcia caught two passes for 85 yards and Bryant added two catches for 30 yards. Wesberry had the other catch for a touchdown.

The Waurika defense held Grandfield to only 88 total yards on the night.

EAGLE FLIGHTS: This was the 40th meeting between the two schools with the first meeting coming in 1922…Waurika’s win over Grandfield narrowed the series margin to 18-19-3…The 52 points scored by the Eagles equals last year’s total in a 52-6 victory over the Bearcats….The 52 points is the most ever scored in a game against Grandfield….The 52-point margin of victory for Waurika is the largest ever against the Bearcats and is also the largest margin of victory by either team in the 40 meetings between the two schools…The previous largest margin of victory against Grandfield was 47 points in a 47-0 victory in 1939…Waurika is 2-0 for only the third time since beginning eight-man play in 2012….The back-to-back wins over Grandfield had not been accomplished by Waurika since the 1968 and 1969 seasons…The Eagles and Grandfield have only played each other five times since the 60’s….The back-to-back shutouts posted by Waurika is not a frequent thing – it has only happened twice since Waurika began eight-man football in 2012…Back-to-back shutouts at any point during the season has only happened 27 other times in school history….The most consecutive shutouts in a single season by Waurika came in 1933 when the Eagles recorded eight straight shutouts on the way to an 8-0-2 record.

 Game in Figures

                                GHS         WHS

First Downs             6              7

Yards Rushing         25-31       16-195

Yards Passing          57            143

Passes                      3-9           5-6

Passes Int. By          0              1

Fumbles Lost          0              1

Punts                      N/A          1-36

Penalties                 5-25         7-47

                SCORE BY QUARTERS

Grandfield      0              0              x              x–0

Waurika         6              46            x              x–52

WAURIKA – Kevin Garcia 30 run (run failed)

WAURIKA – Turner Mora 6 run (Mora run)

WAURIKA – Colton Bryant 20 run (run failed)

WAURIKA – Hunter Wesberry 27 pass from Mora (Bryant run)

WAURIKA – Mora 13 run (Wesberry run)

WAURIKA – Bryant 30 interception return (Bryant run)

WAURIKA – Bryant 78 run (Matt Arriola run)

Green All-Stars Roll to 56-8 Victory Over White Team in Eight-Man Game

Ryan eight-man all-stars and cheerleaders are pictured with Ryan principal and Cowboy assistant football coach Tony Tomberlin (center) at the end of last Saturday’s eight-man all-star game in Miami. Pictured are, from left to right, Laken DeBoard, Joseph Martin, Coach Tomberlin, Dawson Tomberlin, Tate Kimbro and Holland Carter (photo provided).

…Local gridders on the wrong side of the scoreboard

 It was a tough evening for four Jefferson County football stars last Saturday evening in Miami at the Oklahoma Eight-Man Coaches Association All-Star game held at Northeastern A&M’s Red Robertson Field.

 But, the 56-8 loss by the White team, which featured players from Waurika and Ryan, did not dampen the experiences of the week for Seth Cathey of Waurika and Ryan standouts Dawson Tomberlin, Tate Kimbro and Joseph Martin.

 Martin was a late addition to the White squad and was able to join his two teammates for most of the week’s festivities.

In addition, two Ryan cheerleaders, Laken DeBoard and Holland Carter, were part of the all-star cheerleading group that performed during the game.

Tomberlin, who was awarded one of 12 scholarships by Oklahoma Farm Bureau during the awards banquet last Friday night, saw action at linebacker on defense.

 Tomberlin also carried the ball three times on offense in the game and accounted for a total of three yards.

(l-r) Dawson Tomberlin, Seth Cathey of Waurika, and Tate Kimbro. Photo by Jennifer Cathey

Kimbro anchored the White’s offensive line at the center position – much like he did through most of his high school career for the Cowboys, He had a tough assignment most of the night facing a couple of outstanding nose guards on the Green squad.

Martin, the defensive leader on the 2017 edition of the Cowboys, saw action at both defensive end and nose guard.

 Cathey, the Eagles’ lone representative at the game and the team leader on the 2017 playoff team, also saw action at defensive end and nose guard. In the fourth quarter, Cathey was in the White backfield on a number of plays and helped stop the Green’s final two-point conversion try.

The Green team scored on three straight possessions in the first quarter to build a 22-0 advantage.

Ryan eight-man all-stars and cheerleaders are pictured with Ryan principal and Cowboy assistant football coach Tony Tomberlin (center) at the end of last Saturday’s eight-man all-star game in Miami. Pictured are, from left to right, Laken DeBoard, Joseph Martin, Coach Tomberlin, Dawson Tomberlin, Tate Kimbro and Holland Carter (photo provided).

Early in the second quarter the White squad put its only points of the night on the board as Boogie Brown of Dewar capped a seven-play, 63-yard drive with a one-yard run. Brown caught a pass for the two-point conversion to cut the deficit to 22-8.

That would be as close as the White team would get the rest of the night as the Green scored 34 unanswered points over the remainder of the game.  He gained the offensive most valuable player for the White.

The game capped off a five-day stay for the outstanding eight-man footballers in Oklahoma and the players participated in various events throughout the week.

The City of Miami and the Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) in partnership with Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College and the Oklahoma Eight Man Football Coaches Association (OEMFCA) sponsored the festivities.

SCHOLARSHIP WINNER – Ryan’s Dawson Tomberlin, front row, second from left, was one of 12 athletes honored at the Oklahoma Eight-Man Coaches Association awards banquet last Friday in Miami. Tomberlin received his award from Oklahoma Farm Bureau. (Photo courtesy Miami News Record)


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