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Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Ryan Senior Night

Recently, Ryan honored their senior basketball players. They include:

(Player far left) Holland Carter,

Holland’s parents John and Cheryl Carter.

(Center) Travis Fristoe, parents Charles and Jaunita Fristoe (not pictured) His other parents, Clint and Christa Rollins, are in the picture.

(Far right) Laken DeBoard, Laken’s parents, Regina Reimer Darwin DeBoard.

Photo by Sheree hanson

Waurika Roundballers Split Games with Central High



Waurika began the new year by taking on a couple of Stephens County foes and managed to split a pair of games with Central High Tuesday night after dropping a twinbill to Empire last Friday.

Playing on the home court Tuesday night, the Lady Eagles dropped a 52-43 decision to Central High, while the Waurika boys held off Central High, 42-35, to snap a three-game losing streak.

 Last Friday at Empire the Lady Eagles fell, 56-51, while the Waurika boys dropped a 51-41 decision to the Bulldogs.

 Waurika begins play today in the Black Diamond Invitational at Rush Springs. The Lady Eagles were to have played Sterling at 1:30 p.m., while the boys were to have followed with a 3 p.m. contest against 20th-ranked Roff.

 Both squads will continue play in the tourney on Friday and Saturday.

 The Eagles and Lady Eagles will play host to Walters on Tuesday night with tipoff set for 6:30 p.m.

 Heading into today’s tourney action the Lady Eagles are 8-5 on the season. The Waurika boys sport a 4-8 record heading into the tournament.

At home on Tuesday night, the Lady Eagles trailed Central High, 11-10, after one period, but rallied with a strong second quarter to carry a 27-22 advantage into the locker room at the half.

 Central High managed to take the lead after three quarters, 41-39, and outscored the Lady Eagles, 15-4, in the final quarter to get the upset win.

Madison Roberson paced the Lady Eagles in scoring with 20 points and was a perfect eight for eight from the charity stripe.

 The Eagles managed a 7-5 advantage after one quarter against the Bronchos and extended the lead in the second quarter as Waurika outscored Central High, 14-7, to hold a 21-12 lead at the break.

 Despite Central High hitting three treys in the third quarter, the Eagles were able to pad the lead by outscoring the Bronchos, 12-9, and take a 33-21 lead into the final quarter.

Central High mounted a rally in the fourth quarter, but the Eagles held off the Bronchos despite struggling from the free throw line.

 The Eagles hit seven of 14 attempts from the charity stripe and had only one field goal in the final quarter, but it was enough to secure the win.

 Kevin Garcia led the Eagles in scoring with 10 points, but six other Eagles contributed to the scoring column.

The 20th-ranked Empire girls fell behind the Lady Eagles, 10-4, in the first quarter as Roberson accounted for eight of Waurika’s 10 points.

 The two squads battled on even terms in the second quarter and the Lady Eagles held a slim 28-22 lead at the break.

The third quarter is where the tide turned for the Lady Eagles as Empire outscored Waurika, 18-8, to overcome the deficit and take a 40-36 lead heading to the fourth quarter.

In the final frame, Empire’s Korrie Allensworth scored eight of the team’s 16 points and helped hold off the Lady Eagles’ rally attempt for the win.

Empire’s only loss coming into the game was to seventh-ranked Ft. Cobb-Broxton and the five-point loss by Waurika was the closest victory for Empire during this season.

Roberson finished with 23 points and was the only Waurika player in double figures.

In the boys’ game at Empire, the Eagles suffered from a poor shooting night from the field and the free throw line.

The Eagles hung with the Bulldogs throughout the game, but Empire was able to increase the lead after every quarter.

Empire held a narrow 10-8 lead after one quarter and increased it to 25-20 by intermission.

The Bulldogs managed a 12-10 advantage in the third quarter to head into the final quarter with a 37-30 lead.

The Eagles could never get a serious rally going in the final quarter.

Waurika shot only 33% from the field and were woeful at the free throw line hitting only nine of 21 charity tosses for 42.9%. The Eagles did not connect on a three-point basket in the game.

Aaron Nitka paced the Eagles in scoring with 16, while Cache Arellano added 11 points.

 Central High 52, Waurika 43


Central High            11        11       15        15–52

Waurika                   10         17       12          4–43                      

WAURIKA – Madison Roberson 6-8-20, Gracie Walling 4-0-8, Tallin Mora 3-0-7, Faith Roberson 2-0-6, Madison Dees 1-0-2. PF: 19. Three-pointers: F. Roberson 2, Mora.

Waurika 42, Central High 35


Central High            5           7           9       14–35

Waurika                   7          14         12         9–42

WAURIKA – Kevin Garcia 4-2-10, Aaron Nitka 4-1-9, Turner Mora 3-2-8, Cache Arellano 2-1-6, Hunter Wesberry 0-3-3, Bryson Hernandez 1-0-2. PF: 17. Three-pointers: Arellano.

Empire 56, Waurika 51


Waurika   10            18            8              15–51

Empire     4              18            18            16–56

WAURIKA – Madison Roberson 8-7-23, Tallin Mora 3-1-8, Asia Smith 2-4-8, Gracie Walling 2-0-4, Lexie Streeter 0-4-4, Faith Roberson 1-0-2, Madison Dees 1-0-2. PF: 13. Three-pointers: Mora 3.

Empire 51, Waurika 41


Waurika   8              12            10            11–41

Empire     10            15            12            14–51

WAURIKA – Aaron Nitka 6-4-16, Cache Arellano 4-3-11, Turner Mora 2-2-6, Payton Fletcher 3-0-6, Hunter Wesberrry 1-0-2. PF: 11. Three-pointers: None.

Waurika Falls Short In Fast-Pitch Softball District Tourney

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.

Impact of Ryan’s Coach West Goes Far Beyond Athletic Circles

 You might expect when a sports writer is asked to write a tribute to someone the focus would be on that person’s accomplishments as a coach or player.

 But, this article will be focused more on the person than his accomplishments.

Last week a large crowd gathered at Ryan’s First Baptist Church to say goodbye to legendary Ryan coach and principal, Raymon West.

Most anyone that has been under the instruction of Mr. West would probably choose to focus on the man because   

his contribution to the lives of people went far beyond the football field, basketball court or baseball diamond if they were tasked with writing a tribute.

As Bro. Mark Kunkel, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Terral, said numerous times while conducting the service, everyone was mostly there to honor the man Mr. West and not Coach West.

However, well over half the crowd identified themselves at one point in the service as having been coached by Coach West.

And certainly his coaching ability is not to be overlooked, but each person who has come under the influence of Mr. West would probably be quick to agree with Bro. Kunkel and this writer that his greatest achievements were what he poured into our lives.

You see the goal of Mr. West was not really to produce great athletes – although that did happen. His goal was to prepare high school students for life.

And, for the most part he was a master at teaching life lessons.

Mr. West was tough. He was a disciplinarian. However, he correctly knew that making life a bit difficult in the athletic arena would serve each person well when they began to tackle life as a young adult.

And, some of those lessons not only served us well as young adults, but throughout our life time.

As was noted in the funeral service, Mr. West cared deeply for people. He endeared himself to most every athlete he ever coached and those he taught.

The compassion Mr. West had for people carried over to his retirement years as he served people through his church and was frequently present when a need had to be met in the community.

Everything Mr. West did was with great passion – his family, ranching, teaching and coaching.

Mr. West’s accomplishments in the coaching profession should not go without mention. He was inducted into the Oklahoma Girls Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame in 1988. Most everyone knows he coached the 1965 Cowgirl squad that won the Class B state championship – the only state title in school history. He coached the Cowgirls for a total of 13 seasons.

He coached the Cowboy basketball team for 15 seasons and took the 1962 squad to the state tournament – one of only two boys’ teams to advance into the state tournament.

Mr. West’s contributions to the football program are more notable than most people might think. He coached football on three different occasions – in 1958, 1962-1963 and 1977-1980. The 1962 squad just missed out on a district title and finished 8-2 which tied the 1929 football team for the second most wins in a season up to that time.

 It is likely that one of the key decisions made by Mr. West while serving as principal and head football coach at Ryan was moving from 11-man football to eight-man football following the 1977 season. The decision probably saved the football program and he coached the Cowboys to the playoffs in the first year of eight-man football.

Mr. West also coached baseball in the early years at Ryan.

In the four sports coached by Mr. West, he led squads to 14 conference championships, three county championships, seven bi-county championships, 10 district titles, three regional crowns and one state championship.

No tribute, however, would be complete without personal stories because Mr. West had a profound impact on my life.

Late during my eighth-grade year and Mr. West’s first year back at Ryan after having coached at Burkburnett, Texas and Duncan, he noticed right away that my athletic genes were just about non-existent.

Mr. West came to me and asked me if I would be interested in being the student trainer, which I did after football season that year. He sent me that following summer by bus to Baylor University to attend the National Athletic Trainers Association annual convention.

I was definitely way out of my league (can you imagine a kid who just completed eighth grade going on a trip like that alone?), but I learned a few things and spent the rest of my high school days helping with all sports. Mr. West saw potential in me that I did not see in myself and giving me that responsibility helped me stay connected to sports.

As you can imagine we spent a lot of time together during basketball practices. During that time I learned a lot about basketball, but did not fail to pick up one or two life lessons along the way.

One of those came one afternoon after Ryan had suffered a loss in a game that was not well-officiated. And, as I have a tendency to do even today, I was griping about how poorly the officials called the game the night before.

I suppose Mr. West had heard enough and he looked at me and said, “You worry about the things you have control over. We have no control over the officiating.”

That little tidbit has remained with me through the years and has been invaluable in my life’s journey.

In the years following whenever I would make my way to Ryan I would try to make sure I came in contact with Mr. West.

A side note – most anyone coached by Mr. West were all afraid to ever call him anything but Mr. West or Coach West. It was always difficult to address him as “Raymon.” But, that is the kind of respect he commanded and deserved.

Many others and in particular his family could share similar stories about how Mr. West impacted their lives. I am just fortunate I had the opportunity to be the one to write this article.

I believe it is pretty easy to come to one conclusion – there will never be another Raymon West.

It All Gets Serious for District B-4 Grid Squads

While all the games played up to this matter certainly have meaning, they do not match the intensity that is about to occur tomorrow night as the District B-4 schools begin district play.

 All districts across the state began play a couple of weeks ago, but because of Class B having eight districts, each district only has five or six teams.

 So for the remaining five weeks of the season Ryan and Waurika and the rest of District B-4 will be playing for a district title and a playoff spot. The top four teams in the district qualify for post-season play.

 Only two schools – Waurika and Wilson – finished the non-district play with wins last Friday.

And, both Waurika and Wilson went through the non-district slate unbeaten.

Wilson is 5-0 on the year, while Waurika is 4-0. The two teams open district play by facing off at Wilson tomorrow night (Friday).

Last Friday Wilson rolled to a 54-6 victory over Maud, while Waurika scored a 48-0 road victory over Caddo.

Ryan had a bye last Friday and will take a 3-2 mark into district play tomorrow night against Empire at home.

Empire is 2-3 on the year, but has played a slightly tougher schedule than the Cowboys including last week’s 52-24 loss to Class B’s fifth-ranked Alex Longhorns.

Two Stephens County rivals – Central High and Bray-Doyle square off in the other district fray.

Bray-Doyle carries a 2-3 mark into district action, while Central High is 1-3.

Central High, who continues to struggle with injuries and depth, fell to a talented Cyril club, 46-0.

Bray-Doyle met Strother in the final non-district game for the Donkeys and came out on the short end of a 48-16 game. The Yellowjackets had seven players ejected in a skirmish during the game and Bray-Doyle had one player tossed out of the game.

Eagles’ Matchup with Snyder Canceled Because of Weather


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.

Cowgirl Cross Country Squad Claims Two Meet Titles

(l-r) Alicen Williams, Lilybet Harmon, Katelyn Dabbs, Holland Carter, Lily York, Juliet Spangler and Coach Steve Spangler Photo by Trey Smart

 The Ryan Cowgirl cross country squad continues its impressive march through the season as they won two meet titles in two days and claimed a runner-up finish last Monday.

Last Friday the fifth-ranked Cowgirls held off Merritt and Waurika to claim the team crown at Frederick.

The next day, the Cowgirls added another team title by outlasting Velma-Alma and Waurika and successfully defending the title won in 2017 at Healdton.

On Monday, the Cowgirls traveled to Sulphur and finished second to Class 4A’s fifth-ranked Pauls Valley squad. The Lady Panthers had 30 points, while Ryan finished with 64 points.

Another impressive feat by the Cowgirls in these three meets in four days is a different runner paced the team in each of the races.

Lilybet Harmon was the top finisher for the Cowgirls at Sulphur. She finished the 2.2-mile course in 15:33.76 and finished seventh overall. The time set a school record for this distance (not many meets run a 2.2-mile course) set a year ago at the same meet by Holland Carter, who ran a 16:18.79 time.

Not far behind Harmon was Lily York. She finished 10th with a time of 15:52.40.

Juliet Spangler was 12th in the race with a time of 15:58.18 and Carter was 16th with a time of 16:22.49. Katelyn Dabbs recorded a 26th-place finish and a time of 17:38.15.

Alicen Williams finished 41st in the race that featured 64 runners.

Last Saturday at Healdton it was Spangler leading the way for the Cowgirls on the 3,200-meter course in claiming the team title.

Spangler finished third in the individual race and Harmon was right behind in fourth place. Carter was sixth, Dabbs finished seventh and York was eighth giving the Cowgirls four top 10 finishers.

Williams rounded out the Cowgirl competitors by finishing just one spot from earning a medal as she recorded a 26th-place finish.

Times were not available for the meet at Frederick or Saturday’s competition at Healdton.

At Healdton it was Dabbs, a freshman, claiming her best finish of the season. Dabbs nabbed fifth place in the race and Harmon and Spangler were right behind at sixth and seventh place, respectively.

York finished in 10th place, while Carter came in 12th place. Williams finished 30th in the competition.

Sixth place in a team race is not normally considered a very impressive finish, but for the Ryan Cowgirls’ sixth-place finish at Velma-Alma’s cross country meet a week ago Tuesday was quite a performance.

The five teams that finished in front of the Cowgirls were all Class 4A teams and all of them are ranked among the top 11 in that class in the state. It was an extremely competitive meet in the high school girls’ division with 23 teams and over 200 runners entered in the meet.

Ryan finished with 202 points, which was well behind Ardmore Plainview’s meet-winning total of 49 points. Tuttle finished fifth ahead of the Cowgirls with 156 points.

Another indication the meet was a tough one was despite the sixth-place team finish, none of the Cowgirls earned a medal by finishing in the top 25.

Spangler led the Cowgirls’ effort and finished just out of earning a medal with a 26th-place showing. She finished with a time of 14:01.

Not far behind was Dabbs who managed to finish 35th with a time of 14:22. Harmon was just two seconds behind Dabbs and finished 36th. Carter was 46th with a time of 14:43 and York was 59th with a time of 15:00.

Alicen Williams also competed for the Cowgirls, but her finish did not count in the team total. Williams was 100th with a time of 16:41.

The finish by the Cowgirls was also impressive because two of the girls had been battling illness just the day before the meet.

The Cowgirls will next compete in the Cameron University meet at the Big Green Soccer Complex in Lawton. This will be the final meet of the year until the Class 2A regional on October 13.

The junior high boys’ team competed in the meets at Sulphur, Healdton and Frederick. The Cowboys recorded a fifth-place team finish at Sulphur and earned runner up honors at Healdton.

Ryan Junior High Results

At Sulphur

BOYS: 20. Koble Lewis, 8:03.34; 23. Tommy Self, 8:15.59; 30. Alex Uribe, 8:35.95; 32. Mason Adsit, 8:39.79; 47. Landon Alexander; 59. Adan Uribe

GIRLS: 6. Jasmine Villarreal, 31. Whittany Spangler.

At Healdton

BOYS: Mason Adsit, Alex Urbie, Carson Williams, Tommy Self, Aidan Urbie.

GIRLS: 4. Jasmine Villarreal; 14. Whittany Spangler

At Frederick

GIRLS: 12. Jasmine Villerreal (medalists only)

BOYS: 23. Koble Lewis (medalists only)

Eagles Intercept Cherokee Threat to Earn Playoff Win


 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.

Turner Mora looking for an open receiver.
Photo by Curtis Plant

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.

Kevin Garcia racing toward the end-zone.
Photo by Curtis Plant

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.

Photo by Curtis Plant

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.

The Waurika Defense.
Photo by Curtis Plant

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.

Coach Joe Allen talking with Turner Mora.
Photo by Curtis Plant

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.

Waurika sideline.
Photo by Curtis Plant

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.

Waurika defensive player stopping a Cherokee runner.
Photo by Curtis Plant

 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.

Front row (l-r) Mallory Adkins, Nicole Burton, Lexi Streeter, Tallon Mora, Faith Roberson,
Back row: (l-r) Kaci Reynolds, Emily Waid, Regina Bradley, Gracie Walling, Olivia Ralls, Madison Christian, and Kaitlyn Washburn
Photo by Curtis Plant

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

                                CHS         WHS

First Downs             12            23

Yards Rushing         34-132     54-374

Yards Passing         102          133

Passes                     8-12         9-16

Passes Int. By          1              5

Fumbles, Lost          1-1           3-2

Punts                       2-33         2-39

Penalties                  4-30         10-95

                SCORE BY QUARTERS

Cheroke   0              14            0              0–14

Waurika   8              24          12            14–58

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


CHEROKEE: Rushing – Chace 18-76, Payton Ream 16-44, Labato 5-12; Passing – Chace 8-17-102-5; Receiving – Ream 3-38, Hall 2-27, Jacob Mustard 2-14, Blaine Hellar 1-23.

WAURIKA – Rushing – K. Garcia 14-170, Arriolla 11-105, Mora 14-54, Brown 9-39, Bryant 5-9, Austin Dyer 1- -3; Passing: Mora 9-16-133-1; Receiving: Nitka 3-62, Arriola 2-22, Hunter Wesberry 1-26, Brown 1-13, Bryant 1-5, K. Garcia 1-5

Cowboys Pull Out 30-14 Homecoming Victory over Maysville

 It was quite a show of offense last Friday night at Bob Givens Sports Complex by Ryan and Maysville.

It just did not result in a lot of points.

The Cowboys, however, had just enough firepower to record a 30-14 victory over the Warriors in Ryan’s homecoming game.

Photo by Sheree Hanson

Now the Cowboys hit the road for the third time in four games as they travel to Caddo tomorrow night. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. Caddo is 1-2 on the year.

The Cowboys rolled up 453 total yards in the game but turnovers and the inability to convert two-point conversions kept the Cowboys from lighting up the scoreboard.

The Cowboy defense came up with a few big plays to thwart a number of Maysville scoring threats to help Ryan earn its third victory of the season.

Photo by Sheree Hanson


The Cowboys scored on their opening drive of the game marching 70 yards on seven plays. Skyler Parkhill covered the final four yards for the score. The two-point conversion failed, but Ryan held a 6-0 lead with 9:34 left in the first quarter.

Maysville threatened to answer the Cowboys’ score, but the Warriors’ drive bogged down after a delay of game penalty and a nine-yard loss on a quarterback sack by Parkhill on a fourth down play from the Ryan 28.

The Cowboys took over at their own 37 and it took Ryan only two plays to score. Parkhill picked up seven yards and then sophomore quarterback Grayson Tomberlin had a nifty 56-yard run for the score. The two-point conversion failed, but Ryan held a 12-0 advantage with 3:51 to play in the first period.

On the ensuing kickoff the Cowboys perfectly executed an onside kick as Andrew Villerreal combined to kick the ball and recover the onside kick giving Ryan possession at midfield.

It took Ryan seven plays to drive to the Maysville 33 and that is when the game’s momentum slipped from the grasp of the Cowboys. Talented Maysville quarterback and defensive back Gunner Aprill picked off an errant Tomberlin pass and returned the interception 41 yards to give Maysville possession at the Ryan 48.

Ryan HS Cheerleaders
Photo by Sheree Hanson

The Warriors drove the ball deep into Ryan territory, but Tomberlin picked off a pass in the end zone to keep the Warriors off the scoreboard.

The Cowboys turned the ball back over the Warriors just two plays later on a mishandled exchange and this time Maysville took advantage. On the first play of the drive, Aprill scampered 24 yards for the touchdown and also ran for the two points to cut Ryan’s lead to 12-8 with 7:30 left in the first half.

Ryan answered the score with a seven-play, 63-yard scoring drive. The big play of the drive was a 42-yard completion to Parkhill that gave the Cowboys a first-and-goal at the Warrior seven.

Photo by Sheree Hanson

After a loss and a 10-yard penalty, Kalen Weldon picked up 16 yards on a counter and then Tomberlin found Parkhill across the middle of the end zone for a four-yard touchdown pass. Again the Cowboys failed to convert the two-point try, but led 18-8 with 3:33 left before intermission.

Maysville answered the Cowboy score quickly. A 25-yard kickoff return put the Warriors in business at the Ryan 45 and in just three plays went the distance for the score. Aprill found Damon McCallister behind the Cowboy defense for a 47-yard touchdown pass. The try for two failed, but with 2:02 left before the half the Warriors had trimmed the lead to 18-14.

The Cowboys threatened to score again by driving to the Maysville 25, but the Warriors intercepted another pass in the end zone to turn back the Cowboys and the half ended with Maysville running out the remaining seconds.

Photo by Sheree Hanson

On Maysville’s opening drive of the second half Aprill took the Warriors from their own 36 to the Ryan 32 as he carried the ball on every play with the exception of one pass incompletion. Ryan stopped the Warriors on fourth down and took the ball over on downs.

The Cowboys took 11 plays to move 72 yards with Weldon’s key 21-yard spectacular catch keeping the drive alive on a fourth down. Parkhill went around left end for the final 12 yards and Ryan held a 24-14 lead with 4:03 left in the third quarter.

Maysville went on another long drive and moved the ball to the Ryan 23, but on fourth down Villerreal chased down Aprill for a six-yard loss that gave the Cowboys the ball on downs.

On the third play of the drive Tomberlin found Parkhill open on the left side and after the Cowboy senior dodged a couple of tacklers, he sprinted 71 yards for the score with 9:00 left in the game. The run for two points failed again, but Ryan was in front, 30-14.

Two of Maysville’s final three drives resulted in the Cowboy defense getting key stops on fourth downs to help preserve the victory.

Tomberlin and Parkhill accounted for most of the 453 total yards on offense for the Cowboys.

Parkhill set the school record for most yards receiving in a game with 189 yards on just seven receptions. He also rushed six times for 30 yards.

Tomberlin finished with 151 yards rushing on 19 carries. He was 12 of 20 passing for 249 yards, but he did have three interceptions.

On defense, Tomberlin and Parkhill played big roles. Tomberlin was in on 17 tackles on the night, while Parkhill added nine stops. Villerreal, who had 11 tackles, and Parkhill put pressure on the Maysville quarterback much of the night.

COWBOY CORRAL: The win broke a two-game losing streak in homecoming games for Ryan not including last year’s homecoming game with Grandfield which Ryan won by forfeit…..Ryan now leads the short series with Maysville, 4-2….This was the first meeting between the two schools in an eight-man game….The last time Ryan played Maysville was in 1975 with the Cowboys coming away with a 9-6 victory….Tomberlin’s passing performance was the sixth most yards passing by a quarterback in school history….It was also the sixth most passing yards by a Cowboy team in school history….The 12 receptions in the game ties for the ninth most in a single game in school history along with the 12 receptions in a 1940 contest with Grandfield…The 30 points scored by Ryan is the second most in the series with Maysville just behind the 34 points scored in a 34-0 victory by the 1974 squad….The 1988 Ryan Cowboys, the first Ryan football team to play for a state title, were introduced at halftime along with coaches Phil Elerick and Gordon Garner.

Game in Figures

                                MHS         RHS

First Downs             14            14

Yards Rushing         49-218     29-204

Yards Passing         77            249

Passes                     2-6           12-21

Passes Int. By          3              1

Fumbles, Lost          2-0           1-1

Punts                       0              0

Penalties                  6-35         6-45

                SCORE BY QUARTERS

Maysville  0              14            0              0–14

Ryan        12            6              6              6–30

                FIRST QUARTER

RYAN – Skyler Parkhill 4 run (run failed), 9:34

RYAN – Grayson Tomberlin 56 run (run failed), 3:51

                SECOND QUARTER

MAYSVILLE – Gunner Aprill 24 run (Aprill run), 7:30

RYAN – Parkhill 4 pass from Tomberlin (run failed), 3:33

MAYSVILLE – Damon McCallister 47 pass from Aprill (run failed), 2:02

                THIRD QUARTER

RYAN – Tomberlin 12 run (run failed), 4:03

                FOURTH QUARTER

RYAN – Parkhill 71 pass from Tomberlin (run failed), 9:00


MAYSVILLE – Rushing: Aprill 35-166, Bentley Stevens 3-22, Junior Simmons 6-12, Luke Dobson 2-9, Jacob Owen 1-7, McCallister 2-2; Passing: Simmons 0-2-0-0; Aprill 2-4-77-1; Receiving: McCallister 2-11.

RYAN – Rushing: Tomberlin 19-151, Parkhill 6-30, Kalen Weldon 1-16, Travis Fristoe 1-8, Gunner Phillips 2- -1; Passing: Parkhill 0-1-0-0; Tomberlin 12-20-249-3; Receiving: Parkhill 7-189, Weldon 2-48, Fristoe 1-10, Andrew Villerreal 1-5, Phillips 1- -3; Tackles: Tomberlin 17, Villerreal 11, Parkhill 9, Weldon 7,  Justin Williams 5, Walter Snider 4, Gunner Phillips 3, Trey Bryant 3, Pacen Wiest 3, Sam Brown 2.

Cowboys Set to Open District Play

It is time for serious football for the Ryan Cowboys.

 Tomorrow night the Cowgirls will host Empire for a

District B-4 contest at Bob Givens Sports Complex.

 Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

 The Cowboys will take a 3-2 record into the game with the Bulldogs, while Empire is 2-3 on the year.

 Ryan enjoyed a bye week last week and no doubt first-year head coach Tony Tomberlin helped identify the areas the Cowboys have struggled this year during the extra practice sessions.

 The break also gave the Cowboys opportunity to head from nagging mid-season injuries.

 This will be the first meeting between Ryan and Empire on the gridiron since 1977 when Ryan last played 11-man football.

 Empire dropped to eight-man football last season and made a playoff appearance in its first year.

The Bulldogs were the pre-season favorite in most polls to win the district title.


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