Ada, OK 74820
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Baseball | | Jeff Cali | The Ada News
The Latta High School baseball team is off to an impressive start to the 2018 spring season. Kyle Rogers pitched a four-inning no-hitter, and Tyler Dean pounded two home runs in Latta’s 15-0 win over host Vanoss Thursday evening. The Panthers are off to a 3-0 start and have recorded three straight shutout victories. Tyler Dean pitched five shutout innings in Latta’s 9-0 win over Ash
| Ben Johnson
SHAWNEE -- Every wrestling team that entered FireLake Arena on Friday and Saturday scored teams points somewhere along the way. Except for the three that faced Tuttle.
The Tigers put a chokehold on the Class 4A field and breezed to their 10th straight dual state championship and 16th overall. And Tuttle did it by finishing off Wagoner 63-0 in the finals.
“Pretty good team performance,” Tuttle’s Luke Surber said. “Other than that, our team was pretty dominant.”
That’s an understatement.
The Tigers won their three duals in the tournament by a combined score of 209-0. It started with a 75-0 win over Grove in the quaterfianls, and Cache was Tuttle’s semifinal victim with a 71-0 score.
Then came Wagoner, making its first dual state championship appearance.
Tuttle’s Ryder Ramsey set the tone against Wagoner with a win by fall in only 58 seconds against the Bulldogs’ Alex O’Quinn at 132 pounds. Brady DeArmond (145), Dustin Plott (170), Carson Berryhill (195), Ashton Grounds (106) and Logan Farrell (126) also won by fall for the Tigers. Surber added a 15-0 technical fall victory at 152.
But it was Tuttle’s Reese Davis who came up with the Tigers’ biggest victory against Wagoner. Down 8-2 to Wagoner’s Braden Drake, Davis kicked it into high gear and rallied for a 14-11 win.
“I was pretty nervous about it,” Davis admitted afterward. “I wasn’t ready for the first period, but I kept my head straight and came back.”
For Davis, a freshman, it was his first time to experience Tuttle’s winning ways.
“It’s great,” Davis said. “The crowd is big and it’s awesome.”
**See results from Tuttle-Wagoner finals dual below.
3A: Perry picks up another dual state title
When you win as often as Perry does, minor bumps along the way become more noticeable. Such was the case with Perry coach Ronnie Delk, despite his team beating Marlow 38-27 for the Maroons’ 11th straight dual state championship -- and 20th overall.
“Definitely not pleased with that effort at all,” Delk told the Stillwater NewsPress.
Marlow, ranked second in 3A, managed to stay within striking distance early on in the finals. Jordan Taylor (138) and Kobey Kizarr (145) both won by fall, Marlow led 12-6 early on. But Perry did what Perry does and overpowered its opponent before the dual finished up.
Jace Burdick (170) picked up a 5-2 victory over Marlow’s Kyle Wilson, and Perry was within 15-12 at that point. The Maroons then fired off wins in five of the next six weights to take control. During that span, Kohl Owen (182) came up with a win by fall to put Perry in front 18-15, and Teaguen Wilson (heavyweight) and Gave Valencia (106) followed with pins to put Perry firmly in front 38-18.
And before the night was through, Wilson had a message for everyone in 3A.
“I think regionals and state won’t be as close,” he said.
| Ben Johnson
SHAWNEE -- It all came down to Mitchell Lance or Josh Taylor. Fortunately for Skiatook, it had a state champion ready to roll with a Class 5A dual state championship on the line.
Taylor, last year’s 5A champion at 120 pounds as a freshman, scored in early takedown against Lance, and he cruised the rest of the way to an 8-0 major decision, sending Skiatook to a 29-25 victory and its first dual state title.
“I wouldn’t want to put it in anyone else’s hands,” Taylor said not long after his team was handed some dual state hardware inside FireLake Arena. “I knew I could pull through.”
With all eyes inside the venue on the 5A mat, Taylor’s confidence was on full display. While resetting in the middle of the mat in the second period, he winked at someone in the direction of the scorer’s table.
He knew the Bulldogs were a few minutes away from a celebration.
“Once I got that first period takedown,” Taylor said, “it set the tone for the whole match.”
Starting at 132 pounds, Piedmont -- in its first dual state finals appearance -- worked its way up to a 16-9 advantage and then a 22-18 lead after Oklahoma signee Josh Heindselman recorded a pin at heavyweight. Eventually, Piedmont’s Alan Flores would tie the dual at 25 with a 8-4 win at 120 pounds, but Taylor took the mat and sealed the deal for Skiatook, last year’s runner-up at 5A dual state.
“To have Josh Taylor go last -- especially in a tied up dual -- you couldn’t ask for a better one to go take care of business,” said Skiatook coach Jake Parker, who had a message for his team before the season started.
“We started a saying and wanting to know, ‘is it worth it?’ It is worth it to go get that extra takedown or fight off your back. That’s kind of our new saying; it has to be worth it you to be able to go compete for what you’re doing.”
In the end, Skiatook won eight of the 14 matches and prevailed as 5A’s new dual state champion.
**See results from the 5A dual finals below
6A: Broken Arrow back on top with big win over Choctaw
Class 6A No. 1 Broken Arrow made easy work of Choctaw in a 50-10 victory in the dual state finals on Saturday night. But it was getting to the championship that proved to be the day’s biggest hurdle for the Tigers.
In a dual marred by unsportsmanlike conduct point deductions both ways, Broken Arrow managed to hold off Mustang, 29-24, to reach the 6A finals.
Mustang jumped out to a 12-0 lead, and Broken Arrow was forced to fire Oklahoma State signee Reece Witcraft out there, even with an injured left ankle. On practically one leg, Witcraft scored a 6-5 win over Mustang’s Joseph Sylvester at 145 pounds (up a weight class from where Witcraft normally wrestles), and the Tigers used that momentum to win six of seven matches between 145 pounds and 220.
But Mustang’s Christiain Rowland scored a win by fall over Broken Arrow’s Noah Cortes at heavyweight, and the Broncos were within 24-22 with three weights remaining. And ultimately, Broken Arrow’s Jared Hill cruised past Mutang’s Jaston Jackson with a 11-1 major decision to punch the Tigers’ way into the finals.
Against Choctaw, Broken Arrow lost only three matches, and it was Chris Moores fighting off multiple pin attempts by Choctaw’s Gabe Johnson that proved to be a spark for the Tigers. Moores suffered a 19-8 major decision loss, but he kept the Tigers from giving away major bonus points to Choctaw, who only scored wins by Johnson, Zane Coleman (170) and Colt Newton (132).
Witcraft, wrestling at 138, made quick work of Choctaw’s Jace Dean with a pin at 23 seconds, Noah Cortes (220), Zach Marcheselli (heavyweight) and Jared Hill (120) all won by fall to pad Broken Arrow’s lead.
It was the Tigers’ first dual state championship since 2014.
| Ben Johnson
Break down signees on Signing Day, plus a. look at upcoming basketball playoffs. Then quick mention of dual state. Also, sit-down interviews in Bixby with the Spartans' Ainslie Lane, Cade Cavender & Noah West.
| Ben Johnson
Postseason wrestling is here. The dual state tournament kicks things off this weekend in Shawnee at Firelake Arena. Here’s everything you need to know before the first dual begins.
*All championship duals will be at 6:30 p.m. Saturday
Friday - Quarterfinals at noon
Choctaw vs. Owasso
Sand Springs vs. Edmond North
Broken Arrow vs. Deer Creek
Mustang vs. Jenks
Saturday - Semifinals at noon
Choctaw-Owasso winner vs. Sand Springs-Edmond North winner
Broken Arrow-Deer Creek winner vs. Mustang-Jenks
Championship dual on Mat 1
The favorite: Broken Arrow
There’s a reason the Tigers are ranked 14th in the nation, according to Intermat.com. It’s because Broken Arrow has a lot of senior-laden firepower, including nationally-ranked wrestlers, Reece Witcraft (132), Gavin Potter (195) and Zach Marcheselli (220). Then there’s Emmanuel Skillings (182), Blake Gonzalez (138) Bryce Mattioda (170) for added depth. Last weekend, Witcraft finished sixth at the Glenpool tournament, but that’s only because he injury defaulted in his final three matches. With postseason wrestling around the corner last weekend, there wasn’t any reason to push a stalwart at his weight; the Broken Arrow coaches know his importance this weekend, at regionals and the state tournament.
Watch out for… Choctaw
The Yellowjackets are the real deal, and they proved that again last season with a dual state championship. A lot of key pieces are back from last season -- Colt Newton (126/132), Gabe Johnson (145) and Zane Coleman (170) -- but there are a lot of young pieces around them. Choctaw has had some impressive dual performances this season, including a 63-18 win over Edmond North last week. The Yellowjackets also beat Deer Creek 37-28 to open the season.
Keep an eye on… Mustang
Likely a two-horse race in the 6A field, but the Broncos have a few stars of their own -- Keegan Luton (132), Cameron Picklo (138) and Tate Picklo (160). The question will be, where will the rest of Mustang’s points come from? Mustang is 19-2 in duals this season with the only losses against Tuttle (54-13) and Allen, Texas (43-28). And having wins against other teams -- Deer Creek, Owasso and Edmond North -- in the 6A dual state field will inspire confidence, but Broken Arrow will be quite the obstacle for the Bronco, if the two collide in the semifinals.
Storyline to know: There hasn’t been a repeat champion in 6A since Ponca City in 2004-2005
Seven different teams have claimed the 6A dual state crown since 2010, including Broken Arrow and Choctaw doing it twice. Choctaw
Prediction: Broken Arrow 33, Choctaw 21
These two were supposed to meet in January, but the dual was called off because of poor weather conditions outside. But here’s where the big showdown happens. The Tigers, minus a dual state title since 2011, have quality pieces nearly top to bottom, and then their standouts who are likely to secure bonus points. However, if Witcraft is hobbled for the Tigers, that could throw everything out the window and make for a free-for-all in the 6A field.
Friday - Quarterfinals at 4 p.m.
Piedmont vs. Coweta
Collinsville vs. Lawton MacArthur
Skiatook vs. Altus
Duncan vs. Durant
Saturday - Semifinals at 2 p.m.
Piedmont-Coweta winner vs. Collinsville-Lawton MacArthur winner
Skiatook-Altus winner vs. Duncan-Durant winner
Championship dual on Mat 2
The favorite: Skiatook
The Bulldogs were oh so close last year, finishing as the 5A dual state runner up in 35-18 loss to Lawton MacArthur. But this could be the beginning of something special for Skiatook. Only Trey Bowman (113), Cash Calfy (182) and Korbin McLaughlin (220) are seniors, so Skiatook is poised to begin some prolonged success. Skiatook will lean on Josh Taylor (126), Cougar Anderson (152) and Owasso transfer Richie Lee (160). Skiatook has also been a tremendously tough dual team, too. The Bulldogs have knocked off Vinita, Owasso, Wagoner, Sperry and Collinsville this season.
Watch out for… Collinsville
This will come as no surprise but the Cardinals are stacked again at the lower weights. Cameron Steed (106), Jordan Williams (113), Rocky Stephens (120), Garrett Strickland (120), Eli Benham (126), Caleb Tanner (132) and Connor Henson (138) is a formidable group that can rack up points in a hurry for the Cardinals. But Collinsville’s fate will rest in the hands of the wrestlers at the heavier weights, and if they can steal points then the Cardinals could be in store for their first dual state crown since 2015.
Keep an eye on… Piedmont and Duncan
Piedmont doesn’t have a ton of firepower, but it has Braden Culp (170) and Josh Heindselman (285), so it has some key pieces to come up with some big points. Same goes for Duncan, who has Hunter Jump at 160.
Storyline to know: Only three schools have won dual state titles since 2011. Lawton MacArthur is the reigning champion with titles in 2017 and 2018, and Coweta won a championship in 2016. But before that, it was Collinsville winning gold from 2011 to 2015.
Prediction: Skiatook 39, Piedmont 19
This is the year. This is when Skiatook finally captures that elusive dual state title. The Bulldogs take what they learned from last year’s finals and get over the hump. All that said, the competition for the team title at the state tournament in a few weeks will be fascinating to watch.
Friday - Quarterfinals at 6 p.m.
Tuttle vs. Grove
Vinita vs. Cache
Wagoner vs. Clinton
Cushing vs. Mannford
Saturday - Semifinals at 2 p.m.
Tuttle-Grove winner vs. Vinita-Cache winner
Wagoner-Clinton winner vs. Cushing-Mannford winner
Championship on Mat 3
The favorite: ?????
Just kidding. It’s Tuttle. Duh! The Tigers aren’t ranked 10th in the country for nothing. Tuttle is loaded top to bottom. Try to find a weakness in the Tigers’ lineup. It’s not possible. Dustin Plott (170) might be the best wrestler in the state, regardless of class. He’s ranked third in the country and has lost only once in two seasons. He’s on track to start winning college championships in a few years. Then there’s Luke Surber (152) and Carson Berryhill (195) who are both nationally ranked. Just one heavy hitter after another for Tuttle.
Watch out for… Vinita
Alex Prince (120), Lane Enyart (145), Zach Wattenbarger (170) and Brodi Miller (195) are all solid, but the problem for the Hornets is their placement in the bracket. A quarterfinal victory over Cache would mean a meeting with Tuttle on Saturday, and good luck with that.
Keep an eye on… Cushing
The biggest drama in the 4A field will be who wins the bottom half of the bracket to advance to the finals against Tuttle. The Tigers are balanced from top to botto and could get there, but beating a team like Wagoner in the semifinals would be a challenge.
Storyline to know: There used to be a time when Cushing and Bristow owned the 3A class at dual state. (Class 4A now is what 3A used to be up until 2009). Now 4A belongs to Tuttle, who hasn’t let any other team touch the dual state trophy since 2009.
Prediction: Tuttle 59, Cushing 9
What would be great is if all the dual state champions wrestled in a round robin-style event afterward. It would be great to see Tuttle matched up against the 5A and 6A champions. But we can only dream until that day.
Friday - Quarterfinals at 2 p.m.
Perry vs. Vian
Jay vs. Pawnee
Comanche vs. Mangum
Marlow vs. Sperry
Saturday - Semifinals at noon
Perry-Vian winner vs. Jay-Pawnee winner
Comanche-Mangum winner vs. Marlow-Sperry winner
Championship on Mat 4
The favorite: Perry
The Maroons have had far more dominating teams in the past, but Perry is once again putting forth a balanced attack. Ryan Smith (113), Dylan Avery (132), Hadyn Redus (152) and Teaguen Wilson (285) are all rock solid. Once again it’ll be difficult for other teams to cripple Perry’s chances at claiming another dual state championship.
Watch out for… Comanche
Konner Doucet (220) -- ranked sixth in the country -- drives Comanche’s success. Beyond him, there are plenty of quality depth to score points, and even some bonus points.
Keep an eye on… Sperry
The Pirates are a longshot to win a football championship and then a dual state title, but the Pirates have some stout wrestlers. Bryce Carter (170) leads the way with a 28-2 record, despite mostly 5A-6A wrestlers this season.
Storyline to know: His stay in the dual state tournament might not last long since Vian will be a sizeable underdog, but watch Vian’s River Simon at 182 pounds. Recently signed with Army to wrestle and play football, and he’ll likely be matched up with Perry’s Kohl Owen.
Prediction: Perry 26, Comanche 24
I might be crazy but I think Comanche has a solid chance at upending Perry. The Indians knocked off 6A No. 2 Choctaw on Jan. 22, but not long before that Perry beat Comanche by 20. But when the dust settles, it’ll be Perry hoarding its 11th straight dual state title.
| Ben Johnson
We breakdown the OCA All-State football rosters.
Talk some Tuttle wrestling and chat briefly about former Adair great Kevi Luper and her jersey being retired at ORU.
Finish with an interview of the OSSAA's David Glover about what goes into the process of small school playoff assignments.
| Ben Johnson
KIEFER -- Trent Worley is a small-town kid at heart. Plus, he and his wife Ashley have most of their family living in northeast Oklahoma.
That made the head coaching vacancy at Kiefer so intriguing.
And sure enough, Worley was named the Trojans’ head man Monday night, becoming only the program’s second head coach in 12 years.
“It’s a really good spot to be in, both for me and my family,” Worley told Skordle. “But to a lot of people, it’ll look like a crazy move.”
Worley, a Foyil alum, recently wrapped up a two-year tenure at Piedmont, where he went 8-13. The Wildcats went 5-6 in 2018 and earned a playoff berth before being eliminated in the first round by eventual Class 5A runner-up, Ardmore.
In Kiefer, Worley will fill the void left by Josh Calvert, who is stepping away from coaching to take a job in Oregon. From 2008 to last season, Calvert led the Trojans to a 94-37 record.
“This is something I’m looking forward to,” Worley said. “What was impressive to me about Kiefer was how the town places a priority on athletics, and those being bright spots in the community. Plus, there they place a great deal of importance on building relationships in settlings like Kiefer.”
Kiefer is coming off a 3-7 campaign in 2018. The Trojans shared a spot in District 2A-3 with Class 2A’s state champion, Sperry, and runner-up, Beggs. Kiefer entered the final week of the regular season vying for postseason spot, alongside Haskell and Morris.
“I’m a small-town guy,” Worley said. “I’m going into year No. 20 in my career. The older you get the more you realize what’s important, so I’m excited for the move for my family. And I’m excited about the Kiefer program, which as unlimited potential.”