With some upsets and aggressive games on Week 9, here’s my take on some of the matches in the McAlester Area.
McAlester Buffs vs. Sapulpa Chieftains
Though a close game, the Buffs fell to Sapulpa on Senior Night, 27-22.
Payton’s Take: This game came down to the wire in the 4th quarter. McAlester was aggressive on both sides of the ball, but penalties are what ultimately gave the Buffs a loss in their last home game of the season. Both of these teams were battling the entire four quarters, but the Chieftains held on to clench their victory over McAlester.
Coach Forrest Mazey acknowledged that the outcome was difficult for his squad and noted the over 100 yards of penalties as a significant contributor to the loss. “We just had too many mistakes” he said. “We had a chance to close the game out in the end, but a couple of costly mistakes cost us the game.”
To keep their playoff hopes alive, McAlester will have to win this coming Friday against Glenpool on the road.
McAlester’s Eli Pemberton
Hartshorne Miners vs. Allen Mustangs
The Miners were road warriors this week against the Mustangs, keeping them scoreless with a score of 40-0.
Payton’s Take: The Mustangs kept the game close in the first quarter, but costly penalties plagued Allen for the rest of the game. A couple of unsportsmanlike conduct penalties from Allen was all it took for Miner fans to rise to their feet and support their players. I feel the team definitely fed off the crowd’s energy, especially the defense. The Miners were offensively and defensively sound all game, but really kicked it into high-gear when the chippy mentality was evident from the Mustangs. QB Jackson Moody, RB Kelby Thomason and WR Gus Miller were electric on the offensive side of the ball, and OL Treyce Morgan, DE Malachi Sunagoowie and LB Acetin Rowell were equally as impressive on defense.
Hartshorne had a resounding victory this past Friday, but still have much work to do to be ready for the postseason. Playoffs are looming, and the Miners need to win their last game of the season to undoubtedly secure a playoff spot.
Hartshorne will face off against the Liberty Tigers this Friday at home on Senior Night.
Hartshorne vs. Konawa – 10/20/23 – Photo: Chris Bischoff
Wilburton Diggers vs. Idabel Warriors
The Diggers had a tough loss at home against Idabel, 49-7.
Payton’s Take: There isn’t much to tell in this one, as Idabel outmatched Wilburton all over the field. This Idabel team is going to make a run in the playoffs, and the Diggers are in the process of trying to build on their program. Both teams are in vastly different places developmentally and I believe that was a huge factor in Wilburton’s loss this week. The Diggers will continue to mold their program and I believe they will see more success in coming seasons.
Wilburton will head to Spiro to take on the Bulldogs for their last game of the season this Friday.
Wilburton’s Jayvon Leckelt
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If you’re interested in reading more content about high school sports in Southeast Oklahoma, check out Losses Plague the McAlester Area – What Happened on Week 6?