McALESTER — Quinton 42, Canadian 14:
Quinton defensive coordinator Gavin Crocker said he wanted his team to avoid the slow stars that have plagued the Savages all season.
Several quick touchdowns and solid defense gave Quinton the fast start its coaches wanted.
“Out of five series in the first half, there were four three-and-outs,” Crocker said Saturday.
Crocker credited his defense’s success to “great communication” between the players. The Savages forced two turnovers, including an interception that defensive end Mike Sisco returned for a touchdown early in the second half.
Destine Hayes recovered a fumble for a touchdown and Caleb Jarrett threw a 71-yard touchdown pass to Paul Childers for the Cougars’ two scores, according to team statistician Corey Koedyker.
“I think we played a little better in the second half,” Canadian coach Mike Terney said.
“It’s just been one of those rough years."
While Canadian’s season will end next week, Quinton could still make the playoffs with a Week 10 win at Haileyville.
Vian 22, Hartshorne 15:
Down 14-7 at halftime, the Hartshorne Miners forced a safety midway through the fourth, then Dylan Pingleton completed a 38-yard touchdown pass to Kolton Montgomery to put the Miners up 15-14 with two minutes left.
Starting their last drive in Hartshorne territory, Vian converted a third-and-long on a screen pass and scored with 22 seconds left to win the district.
“Our kids outplayed them and we came up on the bad end of it,” Miners coach Bill Williams said.
“We, I believe, had 16 penalties in that game, and we weren’t going to be allowed to win that game.”
Williams said that those 16 penalties canceled at least one touchdown and made it very difficult for the Miners to get into an offensive rhythm.
Vian, he added, was only penalized twice.
“At the end of the day, we had the ball on the 1 (yard line) twice, can’t get in,” Williams said.
Though a disappointing finish, Williams said he was proud of his team’s effort and the fans’ support on the road. The Miners have already clinched second place in the district, so they’ll face Stroud at home at Butler-Jennings Field in the first round of the playoffs.
“That’s absolutely not our Super Bowl,” Williams said of the Vian game. “Our goal is to play for a state championship and play deep in the playoffs.”
Hartshorne wraps up its season at home Friday against Wilburton.
Talihina 43, Savanna 6:
Savanna had a good week of practice heading into Friday’s game. Coach James Bond said Talihina didn’t do anything new or unexpected.
That didn’t stop the Golden Tigers from pounding the Bulldogs and winning District A-6.
“We just got our butts handed to us,” Bond said. “They were a lot better than we were. They were better up front, all the way around.”
Bond said the Golden Tigers led 22-0 after the first quarter. Savanna’s only touchdown came midway through the fourth on a 10-yard run by Ryan Weeks, and that score came against Talihina’s second string.
“We were just outmanned,” Bond said. “They were more physical, stronger.”
Though the game cost Savanna a shot to repeat as district champion, the Bulldogs can still play their first playoff game at home with a win next week against Central Sallisaw, a team Bond said plays much the same way Talihina plays.
Bond said, “What we can’t let these guys do is beat us twice.”
Hugo 76, Wilburton 28:
Cade Fite’s 2-yard touchdown run capped what Wilburton coach Frank Marsaln called “probably one of our best drives all year,” cutting Hugo’s lead to 7-6 in the first quarter of Friday’s game.
After that, the game quickly got out of hand.
“Lack of tackling,” Marsaln said. “Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, we do that the first 20 minutes of practice.”
Marsaln added that at least three Hugo scores came on plays where the Diggers had the ball-carrier wrapped up but couldn’t bring him down. Due to a lack of upperclassmen, Wilburton continues to use freshmen and sophomores on defense, and Marsaln said that difference in both size and experience continues to lead to big losses.
Wilburton’s season ends Friday at Hartshorne.
“We’re playing a JV against people’s varsities,” he said.
“I’m curious to see if the rivalry game gives us a lifted spirit this week.”
Gore 56, Haileyville 7:
After four consecutive shutouts, Reco Sweet gave Haileyville a moment to celebrate with a 55-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.
But that score wasn’t nearly enough to overcome Gore’s high-scoring first half. Haileyville coach Dennis Ford said Gore led 25-0 at halftime, taking advantage of a blocked Haileyville punt.
“It was a lot closer game than the score indicated,” Ford said.
“We’re building for the future. When we put kids in and they get scored on this year, it means they’re going to learn for next year.”
Haileyville will host Quinton for Homecoming on Friday. Haileyville fell to 0-9 this season.
Contact Matt Goisman at email@example.com.