Though some teams were off this week, I was still able to catch some pretty close games. Here’s my take on what happened in the Durant Area on Week 3.
Hugo Buffaloes – Bye Week
The Buffaloes were off this week, which gave them plenty of time to prepare for the rest of the season. Bye weeks are a valuable time midseason to evaluate strengths, weaknesses and what the team needs to do moving forward to be successful. According to freshman wide receiver Jayka Santillan, Hugo capitalized on this off week; they were able to clean up costly issues and are hopeful for the rest of the season.
“We went over our entire defense and offense, top to bottom,” Santillan said. “After going over plays we were struggling with, I am confident heading into the rest of the season.”
The Hugo Buffaloes will host Idabel this coming Friday in a highly-anticipated district matchup.
Antlers Bearcats vs. Atoka Wampus Cats
The Bearcats were victorious against Atoka on the road in a close-fought match, 18-14.
“We played really physical and together as a team against a well-coached team who also played very physical,” Antlers Coach Beasley said. “I am very proud of the fight and toughness this team displayed this week.”
The players who stood out to me were the offensive linemen and the quarterback, Kooper Johnson. The lineman controlled the line of scrimmage and communicated well against Atoka; the team was a cohesive front, even in times of doubt during the game. Kooper Johnson ran the offense with great poise and execution while controlling the tempo of the game.
“I think in the first half, we made some mistakes and thought that it was going to be an easy win,” Senior Reece Crowsey said. “But Atoka got ahead of us. We came back out in the second half, fought and played as hard as we could, and ended up coming out on top.”
This Antlers team is salty, hungry and ready to go do something big. They are definitely a team to keep your eye on as the season progresses.
Antlers will travel to Wilburton to face the Diggers in a district matchup this Friday.
Caddo Bruins vs. Velma-Alma Comets
The Bruins were bested at home on Week 3 by the Velma-Alma Comets, with a score of 60-14.
The game did not go as planned for Caddo. Coming off a successful beginning to the season, I felt that the Bruins were confident against the Comets. However, some mistakes of Caddo’s proved fatal, giving them their first loss of the season. From my perspective, it was the small things, the routine plays that were not flowing well for the Bruins throughout the game.
“We have got to improve on defense with our preparation and mental errors,” Caddo’s Coach Harmon said. “Offensively we played well at times but still hurt ourselves in needed possessions.”
Coach Harmon also acknowledged some positives on the night.
“I’ve got to give credit to Velma, they have a great team and play at a high level,” he said. “Center Austin Lackey played a great game and Hunter Day played with great effort as well.”
The Caddo Bruins, still 3-1, will be a team that develops from this loss, and uses it to get better in future contests.
The Bruins will have a rest week this Friday, with their bye week falling on Week 4 of play.
Idabel Warriors vs. Ashdown Panthers
In a standout performance this past Friday, the Idabel Warriors triumphed in their away non-conference clash against Ashdown, sealing a resounding 27-0 victory.
The team showcased stellar individual contributions from Junior Matrail Lopez, who excelled on both offense and defense, amassing over 200 receiving yards as a wide receiver. Senior Quincy Johnson also shone brightly, particularly on the defensive front, while making significant contributions as a wide receiver and displaying remarkable agility and tackling skills all over the field.
I was impressed with Idabel, especially after last week’s weather fiasco with Broken Bow. They showed up hungry, ready to take the field and play hard.
Head Coach Scott Pratt praised his team’s exceptional performance against a formidable opponent, noting that everything came together for them this week. The team found the elusive rhythm they had been seeking and played cohesively as a unit. Pratt expressed his admiration for the squad’s tenacity, strong work ethic and unwavering desire for victory, making coaching these dedicated players a gratifying experience.
“It’s easy coaching kids like this, kids who want it, who want the win almost as bad as I do,” Pratt said with a laugh.
The Warriors will travel to Hugo to take on the Buffaloes in an exciting district game on Week 4.
Durant Lions – Bye Week
All was quiet for the Lions this week, as they were able to practice hard and get some kinks worked out on their bye week.
The Lions will travel to Sapulpa to take on the Chieftains this Friday for Week 4.
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