With some exciting games in high school football being played on Week 0, I got the insider scoop from the head coaches and radio broadcast teams covering the games.
McAlester Buffs vs Broken BowSavages
The Buffs headed south to face Broken Bow this past Friday.
The play all night of the McAlester defense, with the exception of two big plays that made up for nearly half of Broken Bow’s offense, was the highlight for McAlester. On defense, Malachi Wrice and Drayton Pouncil were constantly being menaces to Broken Bow’s offensive line. Offensively, Carter Lance and Ethan Watkins were two scorers that made quite the impact. Lance Stone, the backup quarterback did well when Lesnau had to come out due to an injury. Stone provided a spark with a big throw and his hard-nosed rushing. McAlester left the game victorious, with a score of 23-13.
Coach Mazey mentioned that it wasn’t pretty and his team was hot and cold. He also said that he’s never known a pretty loss, so he’s proud of the way his team and coaches persevered to get the win. The offensive line is replacing four starters right now. The line and the offense in general will need to get a better start to games moving forward or they’ll find themselves out of games against tougher opponents. As Coach Mazey knew coming into the season, the defense is solid, especially the front seven. This game helped solidify that for now, holding Broken Bow’s offense to only 34 rushing yards the entire game and only 9 in the second half.
The Buffs will host Prescott at home this Friday.
Hartshorne Miners vs. Henryetta Knights
The Miners traveled to Henryetta to take on the Knights on Week 0 of play. The Miners came out aggressive at the beginning of the game, outscoring Henryetta, and even leading 32-12 and the end of the third quarter. Hartshorne seemed to falter in the fourth quarter, and Henryetta capitalized. The Knights scored 28 points in the fourth quarter to come back and beat the Miners 40-32.
Jackson Moody (SR.) made a strong start with a touchdown and 2-point conversion in the first quarter. He also excelled as a free safety on defense, making crucial saves. Kelby Thomason’s (SR.) impressive yardage paved the way for Acetin Rowell’s (JR.) second-quarter score. Thomason continued to shine, rushing for a touchdown in the third quarter along with a successful 2-point conversion.
I was impressed with Aiden Reeves (JR.) on Friday night. He began by making an impressive 80-yard kickoff return. Later in the second quarter, he secured a touchdown that pushed the Miners ahead with a score of 24-12. Not only excelling on offense, but he also managed to make an impact on the defensive side with a sack.
Cody Sanders (JR.) displayed his prowess with a quarterback sack and effective performance at nose guard, solidifying the defensive line. Treyce Morgan (SR.) was another standout on defense, consistently disrupting plays and making his presence felt. Malachi Sunagowie (SO.) excelled as a defensive end, also demonstrating disruptive skills and deflecting a pass.
The Miners have to got to improve on their endurance and urgency as the season progresses, and Head Coach Williams shared a similar sentiment. “We played well up until the fourth quarter,” he said. Football has four quarters and you must play with intensity throughout to win the ballgame.
The Miners will take on the Wilburton Diggers on Week 1 of play at home, an exciting matchup known as “The Battle of Gowen Mountain.”
Quinton Savages vs. Arkoma (Scrimmage)
The Savages traveled to Arkoma on Week 0.
Head Coach Haynie was very pleased with his team’s performance this week, as he feels they have much improved from last week’s scrimmage against Graham-Dustin.
“We just seemed more physical this week, more with it,” Haynie said. The defense was more aggressive this scrimmage, and the offense, led by quarterback Eli Blankenship, looked more confident and poised on the field.
“Eli is our guy, he can do it all,” Haynie said. “We are really looking forward to see what this kid can do during the regular season.”
Blankenship threw the ball well, made smart decisions at QB and rushed for good yards on the ground against Arkoma.
The Savages will head to Wetumka this Friday for their first game.
Savanna Bulldogs vs. Coalgate Wildcats (Scrimmage)
Though another scrimmage, Coach Rick Cherry is optimistic and saw some things he was excited about from his team on Week 0.
“We showed some great improvement overall,” Cherry said. “We had some nice passes and catches.”
Kinyon Burge and Keaton Harkey caught the ball well, and Madden Smith made some good throws and good decisions with ball at quarterback. From Cherry’s perspective, Savanna needs to get better running the ball.
Defensively, Savanna was more aggressive this week and chased the ball with more purpose. The defense made plays when needed, but the Bulldogs have to get more consistent up front and at inside linebacker.
It’s the little things that matter in football, and Cherry is certain mistakes can be corrected before the regular season.
The Bulldogs will travel to Warner this Friday for their first game of the season.
Wilburton Diggers vs. GorePirates
The Diggers traveled to Gore this past Friday for Week 0 of play.
The Pirates were able to keep Wilburton and Troy Clark out of the end zone completely, with a final of 28-0.
The effort was there from both teams, but Gore was much more physical and assertive than Wilburton. The Pirates controlled the game with fervor and dominated on Week 0.
“Anytime you get a win, it’s great for the program,” Pirates Head Coach Brandon Ellis said. “The first game there is always clean up to do on offense, defense, and special teams. But, they are correctable mistakes.”
The Pirates are starting a lot of new faces, and for some, it was their first high school football game ever. “I’m very proud of them, they competed.”
Gore had many standout players. Sophomore Tate Brooksher played extremely well at quarterback and senior running back Hunter McGee looked great running the ball. Sophomore Bladin McCartney ran the ball hard as well. Defensively, freshman Devon Mannon at linebacker, lead the team in tackles, and senior Lane Ward was solid across the defensive line.
The Diggers could not seem to find their groove on Friday night, which they hope to learn from and continue to improve this season.
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