MOORE — Riding a two-game losing streak, Westmoore needed a win. If it had any hopes of playing past Nov. 2, it had to add a W to the win column Friday when it hosted Sapulpa.
Not only did the Jaguars pick up the victory, they did their best to remove the bad taste of losing out from their mouths with a 56-6 pummeling of the Chieftains at Moore Stadium.
“Our coaches have been talking about we haven’t actually played a full game where we all executed,” senior Josh Morgan said. “In this game we all just came through and did what we were supposed to. You can tell by the score.”
The win puts the Jaguars in a three-way tie with Putnam City and Sapulpa for third place with a 3-2 record in District 6A-2. With only the top four teams advancing to the playoffs, one of them will be left out when the season ends in two weeks.
But the Jags are looking for more than just making it into the second season.
“It was huge,” senior Jhames West said. “It gets us our confidence back a little bit. It showed us we can go win especially in a tough district. So these next two games are really huge. If we can get that No. 2 seed we will be looking pretty good heading into the playoffs.”
It was the Jaguars’ defense that made the game’s first big play when it recovered a fumble on the Chieftains’ first drive of the night. Five plays later Austin Richards bulldozed his way into the end zone to put the Jags up 6-0.
SHS quarterback Sam Gottsch got greedy on the next possession and tried to throw into double coverage after driving his team deep into Jaguars’ territory. Lexus Lee picked him off at the 1-yard line to prevent the score.
The Jaguars (5-3) took advantage when Kieron Hardrick broke loose for a 67-yard run to get the Jaguars out of the shadow of its own end zone. He scored two plays later. Hardrick added a 69-yard TD late in the first half to put the Jags up by 28 points. He broke a tackle at the 10-yard line to reach the end zone.
Hardrick and Richards combined for four touchdowns in the first half.
While the Jags’ offense kept pounding the Chieftains with its ground game, the defense was in bend-but-don’t-break mode. SHS was able to drive the field several times, but Westmoore’s cast of playmakers seemed to always make a play. That included Justin George and Chase Huckeby coming up with consecutive sacks to force Sapulpa into a 45-yard field goal right before half.
“Our guys have done a good job of that all year long,” Westmoore coach Billy Langford said. “They have given up some drives but in the end they find a way to get them stopped.”
Westmoore led 28-3 heading into the third period.
The Chieftains (5-3) began the first half by attempting an onside kick. However, Westmoore recovered near midfield. West then hit Johnny Randall for a 46-yard touchdown pass.
“It’s hard to stop when you have an offensive line like us and everyone expects you to run, run, run then you throw play-action at them,” West said. “I think that’s what we were missing last week.”
After Bryson Lee picked off Gottsch, West connected with Lexus Lee for a 28-yard scoring strike. West threw a total of three touchdowns in the period and Richards added another TD run to put the game away.
“Coach really demands excellence and really wants us to be mean,” Morgan said. “He was emphasizing that all week, that if we come out and play hard they will lay down. And they did just that.”
Michael Kinney Follow me @eyeamtruth firstname.lastname@example.org