It was the season opener for the Ryan Cowboys and Cowgirls Tuesday night and both games came down to the wire.
The Cowgirls fell to Grandfield, 34-32, while the boys picked up a 37-31 victory over the Bearcats.
Ryan begins play today in the St. Jo, Texas Tournament. The Cowgirls will play Alvord, Texas in the first round, while the Cowboys are set to play Paradise, Texas junior varsity.
Both teams will return to action on Friday.
The Cowgirls trailed 11-10 after the first quarter, but managed to tie the game at the half, 17-17, despite hitting only three of 11 from the free throw line.
The Lady Bearcats managed to outscore the Cowgirls, 8-6, in the third quarter setting up a dramatic ending to the contest.
That two-point edge ended up being the difference in the game as the two teams battled on even terms in the fourth quarter.
The Cowgirls had a game-winning three-pointer rim out at the buzzer.
Samantha Good led the Cowgirls in scoring with 14 points. Lily York was the only other Cowgirl in double figures as she finished with 10 points.
Free throw shooting, which hampered the Cowgirls most of the 2018 season, was the Achilles heel for Coach Steve Spangler’s squad in the season opener. Ryan connected on only seven of 17 from the charity stripe in the game.
In the boys’ contest, the Bearcats looked like they would run the Cowboys out of the gym.
The Bearcats took a 7-2 lead after the first quarter and increased the lead to 20-11 at intermission.
The two teams played on even terms in the third quarter and the Cowboys entered the fourth quarter trailing, 29-19.
However, in the final frame, the Cowboys caught fire and outscored the Bearcats, 18-2, to capture the victory.
The game did not exactly feature great shooting. The Cowboys managed to shoot 36% from the field but were only one of nine from the three-point line.
The Bearcats were much worse. Grandfield connected on only nine of 35 two-point field goal attempts and only connected on two of 25 three-pointers for a dismal 18% from the field.
The Cowboys might have stayed closer in the first half, but they made only three of 11 free throws and finished the game hitting only 25% from the line.
Defensively, the Cowboys had 10 steals and out-rebounded the Bearcats, 42-34.
Grayson Tomberlin led the Cowboys in scoring with 15 points and was the only Cowboy in double figures.
Cowboy coach Austin Masoner garnered his first coaching win with the victory over Grandfield.
After competing in the tournament at St. Jo, the Cowboys and Cowgirls will be off until one week from today when they begin play in the Black and Gold Classic at Wilson.
GRANDFIELD 34, RYAN 32 (Girls)
Grandfield 11 689–34
RYAN – Samantha Good 6-2-14, Lily York 4-1-10, Alicen Williams 1-4-6, Lilybet Harmon 1-0-2. TOTALS: 12-7-32. Three-pointers: York.
RYAN 37, GRANDFIELD 31 (Boys)
RYAN – Grayson Tomberlin 6-2-15, Skyler Parkhill 3-1-7, Andrew Villerreal 2-1-5, Brock Smith 2-0-4, Travis Fristoe 2-0-4, Landon Alexander 1-0-2. TOTALS: 16-4-37. Three-pointers: Tomberlin.
Joe Allen was selected recently as the 38th head football coach in school history at Waurika High School.
Allen will not only be the grid mentor, but will also serve as the head baseball coach for the Eagles next spring.
“I am really excited about coming to Waurika not just because of the job opportunities, but because my wife teaches at Waurika, we live here and my kids go to school here,” said Allen in a recent interview.
Allen, a 2009 graduate of Cameron University and a 2004 Ryan High School graduate, is looking forward to the challenge of continuing to build on the success Waurika has had in football the past couple of years.
For the past four seasons Allen has been the head baseball coach and assistant football coach at Walters High School. He guided the Blue Devils to one district title in baseball in the four seasons.
“The big selling point for the job was of course my family, but also the kind of athletes they had coming up at Waurika,” said Allen. “I was happy at Walters, so it had to be the right job for me to leave there.”
Allen began his coaching career as a lay coach for the Duncan High School baseball team for two years.
He became the head baseball coach at Rush Springs for two seasons before moving to Temple in 2013 to become the head football coach and head baseball coach for the Tigers.
It was his only season as a head football coach and he guided the Tigers to a 4-5 mark before the opportunity came to move over to Walters.
“Football and baseball were always neck and neck for me even when I was a little kid,” noted Allen when asked which sport was his favorite.
Allen has not yet had an opportunity to meet with the football team, but is looking forward to getting together with them in the near future.
“Being in the area and living here in Waurika I have known the kind of athletes they have,” said Allen in reflecting on his new challenge.
“They have been really competitive in junior high and what I have been impressed with is they have a number of athletes that I have heard are willing to work hard to improve,” said Allen.
While the timing of his hiring did not allow him to get involved with Waurika’s summer league baseball team, he did see the squad in action in their final summer league game at Comanche.
Allen will take over for former Waurika football and baseball coach Glenn Howard, who moves over to Wilson to become an assistant for the Eagles.
“I was glad they had a team because it is hard to get a team together in many of the smaller communities around,” Allen said
Allen was an outstanding athlete during his high school career at Ryan. He excelled in football, baseball and track.
In the 2003 season football season Allen was the starting quarterback on the Cowboys’ semifinal squad that finished 9-4. He threw for 1,113 yards and connected for 11 touchdowns. He also contributed 553 yards rushing.
During his junior season for the Cowboy football squad Allen snared seven interceptions, which was the third most in the state among eight-man schools. He was also named to The Duncan Banner’s all-area football team.
Allen was a ringleader on the 2003 baseball squad that earned a district title – one of only three district titles for the Cowboys since 2000.
In track, Allen was a state track meet qualifier in the high jump in both 2003 and 2004 and was the Southern Eight Conference high jump champion in 2004.
Allen is married to the former Magen Wright of Ryan and she is currently a teacher in the Waurika Public Schools. They have three children with the oldest entering first grade at Waurika this fall.
The Ryan Cowgirl cross country team finished the most successful season in school history last Saturday at Shawnee’s Gordon Cooper Technology Center – the site of the Class 2A State Cross Country Meet.
The Cowgirls finished in a tied for fifth place with Cherokee. Both teams had 192 points. Team places are settled by the finish of the sixth runner on each team and Cherokee earned the tie-breaker.
Boise City-Keyes won the Class 2A girls’ title with 78 points, but Hooker was right behind with 80 points and Watonga was third with 90 points.
It was a much more conducive day for a cross-country race than last week’s regional meets around the state. The Class 2A girls’ division featured the 21 teams that qualified in the regionals last week and 157 total runners.
Lilybet Harmon placed the Cowgirl team members with a 42nd-place finish. Her time was 13:39.3 over the 3,200-meter course. Harmon’s time was just short of her best time of the season set at the Cameron University meet a couple of weeks ago.
Holland Carter, the only senior on Coach Steve Spangler’s squad, was 47th for the Cowgirls and finished with a time of 13:50.1, which was an individual best for the 2018 season.
Finishing 53rd for the Cowgirls was Juliet Spangler with a time of 13:55.4. Spangler was appearing in her third state meet after qualifying as an individual her freshman year.
Freshman Katlyn Dabbs was 54th for the Cowgirls with a time of 13:56.9 and that was just two seconds above her best finish of the season which came at the Cameron meet.
Lily York was next for the Cowgirls and finished just behind Dabbs in 56th place with a time of 13:58.2. York’s time was also a personal best for the 2018 season.
Rounding out the team finishers for the Cowgirls was Alicyn Williams, who was 111th and recorded a time of 15:32.6. The Cowgirl freshman bested her top time of the season by over 10 seconds in the state meet.
The competition at state marked the end of incredible achievements by the Cowgirl cross country squad in only their third season of competing as a team.
The Cowgirls won meets at Waurika, Walters, Frederick, Healdton and Cameron University. The team successfully defended the titles won in 2017 at Waurika and Healdton.
The Cowgirl harriers also finished second at Sulphur and third at the Class 2A regional and were ranked among the top 10 girls’ cross country teams in Class 2A all season.
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 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
…Small Group of Ryan Thinclads Qualify For State Meet
It was a two gold-medal kind of day for Ryan’s Walker Rawlings at the Class A Regional Track Meet at Alex last Saturday.
Rawlings, a freshman for the Cowboys, won the shot put and discus at the regional meet and he will compete in the Class A State Track Meet Friday and Saturday at Western Heights High School.
In most meets this season, Rawlings has competed in the junior high division, but for the regional meet he stepped into the high school division and had an outstanding day.
Rawlings’ throw of 40-9 was first in the shot put, while his toss of 118-6 was good enough for first in the discus.
Rawlings has a little work to do over the next few years to try to break the shot put school record that his owned by his older sibling, McClain.
The older Rawlings was a three-time regional champion in the shot put and a two-time regional titlist in the discus.
The regional titles won by Walker in the shot put and discus marked the eighth and ninth regional titles in those events by a Ryan athlete this century.
M. Rawlings owns five of the titles, while Elijah Greeson won a title in the discus in 2002 and Jay Bergeron claimed a title in the shot put the following year.
W. Rawlings was the only competitor at this year’s regional meet for the Cowboys.
His two first-place finishes earned 20 team points, which put Ryan in 14th place among the crowded field of Class A schools.
It was another good day for the four-member Cowgirl track squad at the regional meet.
The Cowgirls finished ninth in the regional meet with a total of 27 points.
The 3,200-meter relay team of Lilybet Harmon, Lily York, Holland Carter and Juliet Spangler recorded a time of 11:00.89, which is another school record.
The mark earned the squad a silver medal and a spot in the Class A State Track Meet.
It marks the fifth time this season the squad has set a school record in the event and it was 27 seconds better than the school mark set just four days prior at Velma-Alma’s invitational meet.
Despite a sixth-place finish in the 3,200 meters, Spangler earned a spot in the state track meet in the event as an additional qualifier. Her time in the event was 14:00.63.
In the 800 meters, Carter qualified for state with a third-place finish. She recorded a time of 2:39.63.
Spangler also placed sixth in the 1,600 meters with a time of 6:18.30, which is the third best time in school history in the event – all posted by Spangler.
Also scoring for the Cowgirls was Harmon in the 800 meters. Her time of 2:48.09 put her in fifth place among the competitors.
The 1,600-meter squad of Harmon, York, Carter and Spangler did not place in the regional but did record a time of 4:54.46 – which was less than a second off the school record set last week for the Cowgirls in the event.
It was a much anticipated matchup as two undefeated teams were set to face off at Cy Sloan Stadium last Friday night.
Waurika and Snyder were both undefeated and the Cyclones were coming off a big win over rival Tipton. Waurika had mercy-ruled each of its first three opponents by halftime of each contest.
But because of about five inches of rain that fell in the area last Friday and concerns about fans getting into and out of the stadium area, the game was canceled and will not be played.
Of course there was concerned about the playing conditions of the field and trying to prevent injuries as the two teams look forward to district play.
The Eagles get back in action tomorrow night by making the long trip to Caddo to face the Bruins in the final non-district encounter. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. at Bruin Field.
Caddo will come into the game with a 2-2 mark and some momentum having won two in a row including last Thursday’s 57-26 victory over Ryan.
In the win over Ryan the Bruins came within just over a 100 yards of eclipsing the total number of yards on offense in the three previous games combined. The Bruins recorded 502 yards of offense against the Cowboys and had only a little over 600 yards of offense in the previous games.
Senior quarterback Jack Holbrook was outstanding the contest against Ryan with five touchdown passes and was 13 of 18 passing for 230 yards.
The favorite target for Holbrook against Ryan was Payton Brewer, a senior wide receiver. He had three catches for 85 yards, including a 60-yard touchdown pass from Holbrook.
Another senior, running back Michael Creel rushed for 110 yards on just 15 carries and one touchdown.
The Waurika defense will be tested in the contest as Caddo averaged over eight yards per offensive play against Ryan.
Caddo features a 23-player roster and eight of those players are seniors.
The Eagles, however, should be well rested for the game and the unexpected break in the schedule.
Waurika dropped two straight games in the Class A District Tournament at Ringling last Thursday to conclude what has been a tough season.
The Lady Eagles dropped a tough 10-7 decision to Wilson in the first game of the tournament and then were eliminated by Ringling, 11-0.
Ringling took the district title with two straight wins over Wilson, 9-1, and 12-0.
Waurika played one of its better games of the year in the tourney opener against Wilson.
Waurika took the lead in the bottom of the first inning with two runs.
Faith Roberson had a lead off walk and stole second and that was followed by Gracie Walling being hit by a pitch.
F. Roberson stole home to give the Lady Eagles a 1-0 edge and then Walling scored on Landry Forsyth’s bases-loaded hit by pitch. That put Waurika ahead, 2-0, but the Lady Eagles left the bases loaded without scoring another run.
Wilson took the lead in the top of the second with four runs and carried a 4-2 lead into the bottom of the third inning.
Waurika moved back in front in the third with three runs.
Brooklyn Barnes got things started by being hit by a pitch and Forsyth followed with another hit by pitch.
After two outs, F. Roberson managed a walk to load the bases. Walling slapped a double to center field that cleared the bases and gave Waurika a 5-4 advantage after three innings.
Wilson moved back in front with a pair of runs in the top of the fifth, but Waurika answered with a couple of scores to regain the lead in the bottom of fifth.
Hope Cummings led off the rally with a single and stole second. She eventually scored by stealing home to tied the game.
Walling picked up her third hit of the game and came around to score on Madison Roberson’s two-bagger to left field that put Waurika back in front, 7-6.
Wilson came from behind with a run in the sixth and three runs in the seventh to secure the win and Waurika could not answer in the final two frames.
Walling finished the game for the Lady Eagles with a 3-for-4 performance, three runs batted in and two runs scored.
In the second game of the tourney, Waurika had no answers for Ringling. The Lady Blue Devils scored four runs in the first inning, added one in the second, five in the third inning and one in the fourth frame to get the win in four innings.
The Lady Eagles could muster only two hits in the game by Kaci Reynolds and M. Roberson.
In the final regular season game a week ago Tuesday, Waurika outslugged winless Temple, 16-7, on the Lady Tigers’ home diamond.
Waurika jumped out on top of Temple with three runs in the first.
F. Roberson led off the game with a walk and moved to second when Walling reached on an error.
Destiny Barnes followed with a double to score F. Roberson and Walling followed with a score on M. Roberson’s RBI-ground out. D. Barnes came around to score giving Waurika 3-0 advantage and the Lady Eagles left two runners stranded.
Temple answered the Waurika uprising with a pair of runs to cut the margin to 3-2 after the first inning.
The Lady Eagles took control of the contest in the top of the third inning with five runs.
B. Barnes reached base after being hit by a pitch and she advanced to second on Forsyth’s free pass. Olivia Ralls was also hit by a pitch to load the bases.
Cummings reached on an error that scored B. Barnes. Forsyth, Ralls and Cummings each stole home for three more runs.
F. Roberson followed with a walk and eventually scored on another Temple error that put Waurika on top, 8-2.
Waurika added to the lead in the fourth inning.
Reynolds led off the inning by reaching on an error. Tallin Mora was the courtesy runner and advanced to third on walks by B. Barnes and Ralls.
Cummings was hit by a pitch that forced Mora home. Grace Hill, who ran for Ralls, and Cummings scored on Walling’s two-run single. Alayna Stallcup picked up an RBI-single that scored F. Roberson who had reached on a fielder’s choice.
The four-run rally put Waurika in front 12-2 and Temple was in danger of being run-ruled.
The Lady Tigers answered the challenge, however, and managed to score five runs in the bottom of the fourth to trim the Waurika lead to 12-7.
Waurika was not going to let this one slip away. The Lady Eagles answered the Temple rally with four more runs in the top of the fifth inning.
Two hit batsmen and a walk loaded the bases for the Eagles. B. Barnes scored on a fielder’s choice. Ralls and Cummings scored on F. Roberson’s two-run single to left.
Temple could not score and the game ended by the run rule.
Walling led the Lady Eagles at the plate with two hits in five at-bats. F. Roberson scored four times and Cummings scored three runs
M. Roberson picked up the win in the circle for the Lady Eagles.
Four Lady Eagles – D. Barnes, Madison Christian, Ralls and M. Roberson played their final games for the Lady Eagles in the district tournament.
Waurika finishes the season with a 3-18 mark, but the Lady Eagles showed marked improvement in the final couple of weeks of the season.
LAWTON – Coach Steve Spangler and the members of the Ryan Cowgirl cross country squad set some goals before the season started.
One of the goals was to win five meets during the cross country season.
Last Friday, the Cowgirls met that goal as they claimed the title of the Cameron University Cross Country Invitational II here.
Unlike most courses, the Lawton course was fairly wide open and a strong south wind made the event a little tougher even though only four teams competed for the team title.
The Cowgirls claimed the first-place trophy with 26 points, edging out Waurika who finished with 35 points. Lone Grove was third with 83 points and Lawton High finished fourth with 85 points.
This was the final meet of the regular season as the Cowgirl squad will compete in the Class 2A Regional Cross Country meet on Saturday at Velma-Alma’s Wildhorse Golf Course.
The fourth-ranked Cowgirls will be joined by top-ranked Watonga in the Velma regional, which is somewhat surprising considering Velma is over twice as far from Watonga as the northwest regional to be held in Enid.
The top seven teams will advance to the Class 2A State Cross Country meet at Shawnee a week from Saturday.
The Cowgirls will not only have the top-ranked squad to face, but will have five other teams that are ranked in the top 15 in the state in the Velma-Alma regional including the hosts, Waurika and Merritt.
For the second meet in a row, Lilybet Harmon led the contingent of Cowgirl harriers with a third-place finish at the Cameron meet. Her time of 13:35.20 was the best of the season in the 3,200-meter distance.
Katlynn Dabbs was fifth for the Cowgirls and finished with a time of 13:54.40 – also her best time of the season.
Holland Carter was just a half a second behind Dabbs and finished sixth with a time of 13:54.92. But, it was also Carter’s best time of the year.
Juliet Spangler, who was battling a nagging minor injury, finished seventh in the race with a time of 13:59.27.
Lily York rounded out the medal winners for the Cowgirls with a ninth-place finish and a time of 14:07.92, which was also her personal best in 2018.
Alicen Williams finished 23rd in the race, but also posted her best time of the season at 15:43.68.