Woodward, OK 73801
Record: 1-1 | Unranked
|@ Western Heights||9/24|
|vs Bishop McGuinness||10/1|
|vs Carl Albert||10/28|
| Ben Johnson
Whitt and I have reached red-alert status for this season. If we're not careful, we may be stripped of our picking duties. Either that, or our picks will be distributed for pure comedy.
Week 4 picks - Swisher 15-3 | Coach Turney 16-2 | Whitt 15-3 | Ben 13-5
Overall - Swisher 66-25 | Turney 64-27 | Ben 57-34 | Whitt 57-34
My apologies in advance to the teams I pick below:
Midwest City at Stillwater
Michael Swisher: Stillwater 28, Midwest City 17
Ben Johnson: Stillwater 37, Midwest City 32
Whitt Carter: Stillwater 34, Midwest City 27
Randy Turney: Stillwater 34, Midwest City 20
Heritage Hall at John Marshall
Michael Swisher: Heritage Hall 24, John Marshall 22
Ben Johnson: John Marshall 20, Heritage Hall 18
Whitt Carter: Heritage Hall 27, John Marshall 14
Randy Turney: Heritage Hall 24, John Marshall 21
Booker T. Washington at Bixby
Michael Swisher: Booker T. Washington 27, Bixby 20
Ben Johnson: Bixby 21, Booker T. Washington 20
Whitt Carter: Bixby 21, Booker T. Washington 20
Randy Turney: Bixby 28, Booker T. Washington 20
Altus at Ardmore
Michael Swisher: Ardmore 23, Altus 17
Ben Johnson: Ardmore 20, Altus 19
Whitt Carter: Ardmore 35, Altus 21
Randy Turney: Ardmore 21, Altus 20
Tahlequah at Skiatook
Michael Swisher: Skiatook 24, Tahlequah 14
Ben Johnson: Tahlequah 24, Skiatook 20
Whitt Carter: Tahlequah 35, Skiatook 31
Randy Turney: Skiatook 28, Tahlequah 21
Lincoln Christian at Seminole
Michael Swisher: Lincoln Christian 31, Seminole 21
Ben Johnson: Lincoln Christian 27, Seminole 19
Whitt Carter: Lincoln Christian 42, Seminole 28
Randy Turney: Lincoln Christian 22, Seminole 14
Davenport at Dewar
Michael Swisher: Davenport 41, Dewar 33
Ben Johnson: Davenport 37, Dewar 22
Whitt Carter: Davenport 52, Dewar 42
Randy Turney: Davenport 48, Dewar 40
Berryhill at Locust Grove
Michael Swisher: Berryhill 30, Locust Grove 29
Ben Johnson: Berryhill 29, Locust Grove 20
Whitt Carter: Berryhill 28, Locust Grove 21
Randy Turney: Berryhill 34, Locust Grove 21
Yukon at Edmond Santa Fe
Michael Swisher: Edmond Santa Fe 31, Yukon 20
Ben Johnson: Edmond Santa Fe 24, Yukon 17
Whitt Carter: Edmond Santa Fe 27, Yukon 17
Randy Turney: Edmond Santa Fe 21, Yukon 14
Yale at Regent Prep
Michael Swisher: Regent Prep 42, Yale 28
Ben Johnson: Regent Prep 38, Yale 30
Whitt Carter: Regent Prep 38, Yale 32
Randy Turney: Regent Prep 38, Yale 14
Crescent at Crossings Christian
Michael Swisher: Crescent 29, Crossings Christian 24
Ben Johnson: Crossings Christian 27, Crescent 23
Whitt Carter: Crossings Christian 24, Crescent 20
Randy Turney: Crossings Christian 28, Crescent 20
Jones at Meeker
Michael Swisher: Jones 35, Meeker 20
Ben Johnson: Jones 42, Meeker 27
Whitt Carter: Jones 36, Meeker 28
Randy Turney: Jones 34, Meeker 22
Clinton at Weatherford
Michael Swisher: Clinton 18, Weatherford 14
Ben Johnson: Clinton 22, Weatherford 17
Whitt Carter: Weatherford 24, Clinton 18
Randy Turney: Weatherford 22, Clinton 20
Broken Bow at Hilldale
Michael Swisher: Hilldale 21, Broken Bow 20
Ben Johnson: Hilldale 27, Broken Bow 21
Whitt Carter: Hilldale 34, Broken Bow 28
Randy Turney: Hilldale 22, Broken Bow 14
Woodward at Bishop McGuinness
Michael Swisher: Bishop McGuinness 31, Woodward 14
Ben Johnson: Bishop McGuinness 33, Woodward 22
Whitt Carter: Bishop McGuinness 37, Woodward 21
Randy Turney: Bishop McGuinness 38, Woodward 20
Memorial at Collinsville
Michael Swisher: Collinsville 28, Memorial 17
Ben Johnson: Collinsville 23, Memorial 12
Whitt Carter: Collinsville 28, Memorial 13
Randy Turney: Collinsville 22, Memorial 21
Union at Mustang
Michael Swisher: Union 28, Mustang 26
Ben Johnson: Union 37, Mustang 17
Whitt Carter: Union 27, Mustang 16
Randy Turney: Union 38, Mustang 18
| Ben Johnson
District play has arrived in full force, and there are great games all over the state this week.
Narrowing down the list to the top 10 games wasn't easy, but here it is:
1. 6AII No. 2 Midwest City (3-1) at 6AII No. 1 Stillwater (4-0): In a loaded Class 6AII District 1, the winner here has to feel good about having the inside edge to a district title. The Bombers, having beaten Stillwater four of the last six matchups since 2012, topped the Pioneers in a 35-21 clash last season. In that game, Midwest City quarterback Preston Colbert accounted for 234 yards through the air, including three touchdowns. For good measure, he also rushed for two scores. Last week, Lawton's Miles Davis torched Midwest City for 181 yards and two touchdowns, and now Stillwater will deploy Qwontrel Walker, who rushed for 300-plus yards against Deer Creek last week.
2. 3A No. 1 Heritage Hall (3-1) at 3A No. 2 John Marshall (4-0): Heritage Hall's Billy Ross is closing in on 2,000 career rushing yards. John Marshall quarterback Jerod Leviston is closing in on 1,000 yards through the air this season. And while the offenses may have superb star power, it's the defense stealing the spotlights here. Heritage Hall has only given up 51 points -- most coming in a 30-20 loss to Millwood. John Marshall has yielded only 28 points -- most recently only giving up 10 in a 76-10 win over Bridge Creek last week. These two -- both reigning state champions: Heritage Hall (4A) and John Marshall (3A) -- have met in non-district play the last two seasons with the Chargers winning both. Now they get to square off with district supremacy on the line.
3. 6AII No. 4 Booker T. Washington (2-2) at 6AII No. 3 Bixby (3-1): Rematch of last year's 6AII title game -- one that saw Booker T. Washington come from behind to win. Both teams showcase stellar defensive units. Bixby is led by Ryan Kerr, Brody Sartin, Ethan Hall, Noah West and others, while Booker T. Washington's defense is led by Dax Hill, one of the nation's top recruits who just committed to Michigan. The key for both teams will be finding offensive success. Bixby will lean on quarterback Mason Williams, tailback Braden Roller and wideout Brennan Presley. Booker T. Washington was without its top tailback, Thomas Grayson, against Bartleville last week, and primary quarterback Dwight Hamilton also suffered an arm injury against the Bruins. If Hamilton is unable to go, the Hornets are likely to turn to Tai Dobbins. These two clubs have met every year since 2014, and the Hornets have won three of the five games.
4. 5A No. 3 Altus (4-0) at 5A No. 2 Ardmore (4-0): This might end being the quickest game of the week. Lots and lots of running and by a multitude of players. The Bulldogs have had at least seven players carry the ball at least 16 times and for more than 130 yards to this point in the season. And six of those seven have found the end zone. Ardmore has five -- Cameron Petties, Tero Roberts, Jadrien Monor, Jermaine Scallion and Eean Ross -- primary ball carries, all of which have shared the ball for more than 1,100 yards. Since 2010, Altus and Ardmore have shared district space, and Ardmore has gone 5-2 in those contests.
5. 5A No. 7 Tahlequah (4-0) at 5A No. 4 Skiatook (4-0): Two of the most unheralded players in the state -- Tahlequah's Dae Dae Leathers and Skiatook's Jayden Garner -- will battle it out this week. Leathers and the Tigers rushing attack has been nearly impossible to stop, and Skiatook has been extremely balanced on offense with Garner and Cody Evans at quarterback. One area where Skiatook could have the advantage is defense; the Bulldogs have given up only 19 points through four games. Twice opponents have scored 20 or more points against the Tigers.
6. 3A No. 4 Lincoln Christian (4-0) at 3A No. 7 Seminole (4-0): Much like Heritage Hall and John Marshall, Lincoln Christian and Seminole spent the last two seasons playing as non-district foes (with Lincoln Christian winning both). Seminole will undoubtedly turn to Cameron Gunville (761 yards on 70 carries) in the ground game, while Lincoln Christian will spread it around, thanks to quarterback Chase Ricke (875 yards, 10 TDs on 41 of 69 attempts), tailback Brendyn Harris (402 yards on 66 carries) and Sam Brueggemann (436 yards on 14 catches).
7. B No. 2 Davenport (4-0) at B No. 4 Dewar (4-0): Jacob Acord and Stevie Orr have been nothing short of stellar on the offensive side of the ball for Davenport. Meanwhile, the Bulldogs' defense remains tough to crack. These two teams put on a show last year in a 44-42 win for Davenport.
8. 3A No. 3 Berryhill (4-0) at 3A No. 9 Locust Grove (4-0): Here's a solid matchup of two quarterbacks that don't get the credit they deserved. Berryhill's Cody Ross has tossed for 750 yards and six touchdowns while completing 46 of 80 attempts. For Locust Grove, Caden Bendabout is completing 71 percent (54 of 76) of his passes for 865 yards and seven touchdowns. These two teams have met every year since 2013, and Locust Grove has won three of the five, although Berryhill has won the last two (a 46-14 win last year).
9. 6AI No. 6 Yukon (4-0) at 6AI No. 4 Edmond Santa Fe (4-0): The winner here might announce itself as a potential threat to Broken Arrow, Jenks or Union at the top of 6AI. The Wolves have won the past seven games dating back to 2011, and they'll test Yukon's defense with Kanan Hansen at quarterback.
10. B No. 7 Yale (4-0) at B No. 3 Regent Prep (3-0): Yale hasn't gotten the credit it deserves this season, but that'll end if it's able to knock off Regent Prep. The Rams' Braden Gilbert has thrown for 957 yards and 14 touchdowns while completing 37 of 57 passes this season. The two teams have only met once, and Yale won 38-14 in 2011.
Crescent at Crossings Christian: Another week, another big showdown in District A-3. These two haven't met since 2015 with the series tied 2-2.
Jones at Meeker: Meeker's unbeaten start will be tested with these two clubs facing off for the first time since 2009.
Clinton at Weatherford: These two Interstate-40 rivals have met every year since 1957, including several some memorable playoffs showdown. Weatherford won last year's meeting 30-7.
Broken Bow at Hilldale: Hornets have beaten Broken Bow two years in a row, including last year's 21-6 decision.
Woodward at Bishop McGuinness: Woodward hasn't beaten Bishop McGuinness since 1996. The Irish have won the last seven matchups between the two clubs.
Memorial at Collinsville: Jamoni Jones rushed for 300-plus yards against East Central last week, but now he'll face a test in the Cardinals' stout defense. Collinsville's defense has been a lockdown unit since allowing 250-plus yards to Bartlesville's DeAndre Young in week two.
Union at Mustang: Union has won all six games against Mustang in the series between the two. Three times it has finished as a one-possession game, but Union won last year 48-28.
So who wins all the matchups? Check back for our weekly picks on Thursday.
*Photo by Jimmy Gillespie/Stillwater NewsPress
| Michael Swisher
Holland Hall showed why it won the 2020 Class 3A state championship and is among the favorites to do it again in 2021.
In a highly-anticipated matchup between top teams in their respective classes, the Holland Hall Dutch took down Metro Christian 37-7 last Friday night through stout defense and great run game.
The Dutch were led by senior running back Zane Woodham, who recorded just under 150 yards on the ground on 17 attempts. He also contributed three touchdowns, two of which came on their first couple of drives.
Holland Hall got the ball to start the game and set the tone early.
Woodham punched in an opening drive touchdown from eight yards out to take the lead just two minutes into the game. The PAT was no good and the Dutch led 6-0 after just six offensive plays.
After a quick three and out, the Dutch looked to extend their lead with 9:00 left in the first quarter. The Dutch offense converted a 33-yard trick play pass from Woodham to wide receiver Ethan Roush to land in the red zone.
Woodham would have another rush for a touchdown from 22 away to extend their lead by six more. The extra point by Magnus Lepak made the score 13-0 with a little over 8:00 left in the first quarter.
After back and forth punts by both teams, the Dutch got the ball at their 27 yard line with a little under nine minutes left in the first half.
Patriots defensive lineman Dempsey Gillam came up with a Woodham fumble.
Momentum seemingly shifted to the Patriots as they set up their possession at the Dutch 10, but Holland Hall’s defense was up for the quick change as it got a sack on the first play of the drive by Nick Jones.
An incomplete pass and penalty on second down set up a third-and-goal from the 30. A pass to Patriots wide receiver J.J. Shelby for 10 yards, and another for 18 left the Patriots just two yards short as the Dutch defense denied Metro on its best opportunity so far in the game.
Late in the first half, quarterback Kordell Gouldsby and the Dutch offense obtained the ball with 46 seconds left.
After a few run plays by Gouldsby and Woodham, the Dutch faced a 4th-and-1 at the Patriot 37.
Gouldsby took the snap and scrambled around defenders before launching a perfect pass to Roush for the 37-yard touchdown. After the extra-point by Lepak, Holland Hall led 20-0 at the half.
The start of the second half saw Metro Christian with the ball. A trick play was denied as Shelby was intercepted by defensive back NuNu Campbell.
On the ensuing drive, Gouldsby found Campbell, this time on offense, for a 22-yard reception.
Lepak finished off the drive with a 21-yard field goal attempt. Holland Hall led 23-0 with seven minutes left in the third quarter.
Quarterback Kirk Francis for Metro Christian shined in the Patriots’ next offensive possession.
Francis completed a play for 14 yards to Reid Roth, and runs for 20 yards throughout the drive.
A defensive passing interference set up a 19-yard touchdown throw to J.J. Shelby. Kicker Brayden Haveman executed the extra-point to cut the lead 16 points, 23-7.
The momentum was short lived, as the Holland Hall offense answered back with one minute remaining in the third quarter.
Woodham rushed for 42 yards all together on the drive and it was capped off by a Gouldsby touchdown run of three yards.
Lepak tacked on the extra-point to extend the Dutch lead, 30-7.
The fourth quarter was highlighted by a Woodham 54-yard touchdown run. The Dutch put the stamp on this game with 10 minutes left, leading the Patriots 37-7.
After a couple punts in the fourth quarter, defensive back Tre Carter of Holland Hall picked off Francis.
Holland Hall was able to run the clock out after this, giving the carries to backup running backs Justice Thompson and Bryce Stoller.
Holland Hall dominated the defending 2A state champions led by Woodham.
Gouldsby threw for 100 yards and ran for an additional 61, while his leading receiver Roush caught 74 yards worth of passes.
Gouldsby had two touchdowns, one on the ground and a passing one.
Woodham ran for 148 yards and had three touchdowns on the ground.
The Dutch defense was spectacular, getting five sacks and two interceptions. They regularly halted the Patriot offense on critical plays and drives and held the Patriot offense to minus-five yards.
Holland Hall enters district play as the favorite in District 3A-4. The Dutch are 3-0 on the year.
They will play at Mannford for Week 4.
Metro Christian falls to 2-1.
The Patriots are still the team to beat in 2A after winning the past two state championships.
There’s a big matchup for them in Week 6 as they will take on highly-ranked Beggs with possibly a district championship on the line.
Metro Christian will take on district opponent Okmulgee in Week 4.
| Michael Swisher
The Coweta football program has been knocking on the door for some time now.
District champions in 2015 and 2017. A 10-win season and a district title a year ago. Three straight years with a playoff victory.
But after a 3-0 start in 2021, powered by wins over Bishop McGuinness and Wagoner, the Tigers may be ready to kick the door down.
Three weeks ago, the Tigers opened up the season with a 35-28 road win at highly-ranked and usual title-contender Bishop McGuinness.
They followed that up a week later with a 37-13 victory at home over rival and yearly class 4A favorite Wagoner in the annual "Wagoner County War."
Not only have the Tigers started off the 2021 season in perfect fashion after a 42-6 win last week over Frontenac, Kan., but there was more to the first two wins than meets the eye.
Coweta avenged both of its losses last year, one to Bishop McGuinness that ended the Tigers' season in the quarterfinals and the other to Wagoner, as the Tigers beat the Bulldogs for the first time since 2012 and only the second time since 2007.
“I think the key to our start has been our kids' commitment to doing something special here in Coweta,” said head coach Tim Harper. “We had a very good season last year, but that really just lit a fire in these guys and created a hunger to be even more successful.
“We were beat in 2020 by two of the most successful programs in the state. We wanted to prove that we belong in that conversation.”
Harper, who is in his third year at the helm, thinks those losses in 2020, coupled with some other tough defeats in 2019, stuck with this group and has driven them to achieve what their opponents accomplished.
“In 2019, we lost to a tough Tahlequah team 9-7, the district champion Edison by one, and Bishop Kelley by a field goal,” he said. “The kids that are experiencing this success now are the same kids that lost those close games and realize that it was the little things that beat us.”
Harper spoke about how the success of winning two big games last year highlighted how his team learned from those losses and flipped the script that was unkind in 2019.
“We built on those hard losses a year ago, when we finished 10-2, won the district championship and had big wins on the road at McAlester and Bishop Kelley,” he said. “This streak of Tigers realizes that the little things are what makes the big difference.”
Part of that success can be attributed to the hard-working culture that Harper’s group displays daily, something that has had to change in recent years to take the program to the next level.
“The culture at Coweta was always good,” Harper said. “People were proud of being known for being tough and hard-nosed. However, a difference that we made is in our overall process.
“We said ‘let's keep that reputation, but we will also outwork people year round. We will not lower our expectations. We will be consistent in our effort.’ Being tough on Friday night 10 nights a year is not enough.”
And Harper has nothing but praise for his kids in how they have received that challenge and owned the mindset of hard work, both on the field and in the weight room throughout the offseason.
“We have a blue-collar program that shows up to try and outwork everybody on our schedule daily,” Harper said. “We realize that to be successful during the season, you have to put in the work in the offseason. The difference between Coweta now vs. Coweta past is our kids understand that now.”
For a display of that hard work and leadership, look no further than several key seniors on this Coweta team, including Gage Hamm, a three-year starter at quarterback, two crucial lineman in Maverick McCullough and Caleb Phillips and a leader on defense in linebacker Michael Fletcher.
Gage Hamm/Photo by Christy McCullough
Hamm has thrown for 477 yards and six touchdowns with no interceptions, McCullough and Phillips have paved the way for a rushing attack that averages 206.7 yards per game and Fletcher is one of the leading tacklers for the Tigers, recording 21 stops for the Coweta defense.
“Leadership starts with those four seniors,” Harper said. “They have started a lot of football games. They are hungry to be the best they can be and they practice like it.”
But the leadership and willingness to be better than you were the day before runs throughout this team. Harper refers to the 212 degree mantra, a popular motivational mindset that illustrates the drive to go one step further.
“We live by the 212 degree mantra, which is being one degree hotter or in our world, giving that little extra effort. This is the degree that takes us from good to great. We are not quite there yet, but we are getting closer.”
Harper even spoke about how his coaching staff has embraced the 212 degrees life and how everyone is pointed towards the same goal – being one degree better.
“My coaching staff of Scott Chronister, Macklin Chermak, David McGrath, Jeff Falgien, Josh Moses, Joe McHenry, Connor Seaba and Tristan Ridenour are first and foremost amazing men, but also outstanding coaches to boot. We hold the kids' feet to the fire. They know as well as I do, we will not reach 212 degrees unless we do that.”
As the Tigers continue their trek through the 2021 season, Harper likes what he has seen from both sides of the ball and hopes to continue to be balanced and aggressive offensively, as well as disciplined and stingy on defense.
“Offensively, we have to be able to stretch a team's defense sideline-to-sideline and take calculated shots vertically. We have to continue to emphasize our downhill run game and not get satisfied. We have to play physical and smart,” Harper said.
“Defensively, we have to fight for every yard and make the opponents earn everything. We have to continue to eliminate the untimely penalties, something that has plagued us in the past.”
If the Tigers can do that, make no bones about it – their sights are set high.
They know what they want to accomplish – the school’s first state title.
“Our goals are always the same,” Harper said. “We want to compete for the district championship. Beyond that, we want to be the first Coweta team since 1998 to make the state semifinals.”
“And then if we get there, I think the last goal is obvious.”
| Michael Swisher
The Jenks Trojans defeated Union 22-0 last Friday in the “Backyard Bowl,” which was the 64th meeting between the two schools.
Jenks extended its all-time record to 41-23 against its rival as it shutout Union for the second straight year.
It was Union that captured momentum early with an interception on Jenks’ first drive.
Trojan freshman quarterback Shaker Reisig threw a pick on his first attempt of the game, but would bounce back.
After a few possessions by both teams, Reisig threw to running back Jaiden Carrol for a 50-yard touchdown completion. The extra point by Andrew Purcell would have Jenks take a 7-0 lead late in the first quarter.
On the ensuing Union drive, led by big plays from running back Antonio “Junior” Smith and quarterback Grayson Tempest, they found themselves down at the Jenks 17-yard line.
A handoff to running back Rovaughn Banks had him going to the end zone, only to fumble on a hit by Joey Havir.
The end of the play gave Jenks the ball back on a touchback, negating the touchdown from the Union offense.
Jenks was driving down the field midway through the second quarter. The drive was highlighted by receivers Ty Walls and Glenver Jones, with running backs Jalyn Stanford Carroll doing the work on the ground.
It was capped off by a Carroll rushing touchdown from the 1.
On the extra point, the snap was bobbled by holder Ty Walls. Walls scrambled and dodged defenders before finally finding his guy in the end zone for two points.
The game was plagued by penalties on both sides of the ball.
A total of 22 penalties were called on these teams, with most of them being false starts or holding flags.
Drives were forced to be halted and punted away after two or three straight plays were penalized.
Jenks carried its 15-0 advantage into the fourth quarter.
Looking for a more comfortable lead, head coach Keith Riggs dialed up a trick play.
A toss to Carroll made the Union secondary inch forward.
Carroll squared up and delivered a deep strike to Walls, who had to beat one defender on his way to a 69-yard touchdown reception. The score, followed by a Purcell extra point, pushed the Trojans to the final margin.
After that score, Union continued to have a tough time getting the offense going as it punted twice more in the fourth.
Jenks closed the game with strong running by Stanford and Carroll and was able to kneel down in victory formation and leave Union-Tuttle Stadium with a win.
Jaiden Carrol led the Jenks Trojans in rushing, while also recording a receiving and passing touchdown.
The Trojans, coming off last week’s loss to Bixby, improved to 2-1 entering district play.
Union dropped to 2-1 with the loss.
- RB Jaiden Carrol - 86 Rush Yards, 51 Rec Yards, 69 Pass Yards, 3 Total TDs
- QB Shaker Reisig - 13/19 153 Pass Yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
- WR Ty Walls - 123 Rec Yards, 1 TD
- QB Grayson Tempest - 7/16 79 Pass Yards
- RB Antonio “Junior” Smith - 64 Rush Yards
| Michael Swisher
We are back for another week of high school football!
| Michael Swisher
Flamingo – The go-to Enid food stop for the SKORDLE crew
If you haven’t had a burger at the Flamingo Lounge in Enid, you really need to because they are absolutely delicious!
The Flamingo is located right at the main intersection of town (U.S. 81 and U.S. 412 or Van Buren and Garriott for the locals).
It’s a classic dive joint that has been a favorite for many for a really long time.
Simple is why they are great.
The burgers are incredible and what I love the most is the melty cheese and warm greasy bun.
I would highly recommend the Double Meat, Double Cheeseburger. You can even add chili if you’re brave enough or have arteries made of steel.