By Michael Kinney
The Moore American
YUKON — Westmoore thought it was ready. After playing No. 1 Jenks more than a month ago, the Jaguars said they knew was to expect from the 10-time state champion.
Unfortunately for the Jaguars, the team they faced in the regular season didn’t show up to the 6A semifinals Friday. This Trojans squad came out swinging from the opening whistle and the Jags had no answer as they lost 46-14 at Miller Stadium in Yukon.
“It was tough,” senior Ty Watkins said. “We thought we could do some things out there and it just didn’t go our way. They were playing fast. Playing like they had something to prove, honestly. Kind of shocked us I think. I don’t think we were prepared for it.”
Westmoore (10-3) was the final team from the west side that could have prevented Jenks or Union from winning another state title. However, just like the past 17 years, the east side outgunned the teams from the west in the games that matter.
“They beat us fair and square,” Jaguar defensive back Kiante Channel said. “We had our second chances and they beat us.
Jenks (13-0) and Union (11-2) will meet for the ninth time in the 6A state title game Thursday at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater. The series is split 4-4.
“This is great,” Jenks safety Steven Parker said. “It’s great to be back here. We’ve had a great season so far. The biggest factor was keeping our head on our shoulders and not getting the big heard. Keep going and keep chipping away.”
The Trojans struck first with a Parker 36-yard touchdown pass from Cooper Nunley. Parker broke four tackles as he raced into the end zone.
It was the first of two touchdown grabs on the night for Parker.
Nunley added two more touchdown passes in the first quarter to go up 19-0. The third was the result of a Bryson Lee fumble at the Jags’ 24-yard line.
“They got after us from the very beginning,” Westmoore coach Billy Langford said. “They got after us offensively and defensively. And they just really took it to us. I think they were more physical than they were the last time around.”
The Jaguar defense was without starting defensive lineman Chase Silva, who was kicked out of the quarterfinal game against Lawton High. Jenks took advantage.
Touchdown runs from Kalen McDavid and Cameron Booty quickly had the Jaguars trailing 32-0 before the 10-minute mark in the second quarter.
Westmoore’s offense had the same issues with Jenks defense as in the first matchup. Auer John, Marquise Overton and Tyler Thomas overpowered the Jaguars’ offensive front. Each time Lee dropped back to pass, he had less than a couple of seconds before he had to scramble out of the pocket or was sacked.
“They said they wanted to pass it against us a lot more,” Parker said. “They thought they would have more success. Our defense just really stepped it up and said we are going to tell them who we are.”
The Jags didn’t find success until they recovered a muffed punt return at the 35-yard line. A few plays later, Lee threw a jump ball to Dahu Green in the corner of the end zone for a 12-yard touchdown pass to get the Jags on the board.
On the ensuing kickoff, Westmoore recovered its onside kick. The Jags got to the Trojans’ 15-yard line before having to go for it on fourth down. Lee’s pass to Green was incomplete and Jenks took over on downs.
Westmoore trailed 32-7 at halftime.
Despite a pair of interceptions from Lexus Lee and a 34-yard touchdown run by Kieron Hardrick, Westmoore never threatened in the second half.
“This time they just came to play,” Hardrick said of Jenks. “They had their mindset on beating us. They had their mindset on going to state. They just didn’t back down. I expected more out of us. I expected more out of myself, also. But you just have to play the cards you’re dealt.”
Michael Kinney Follow me @eyeamtruth firstname.lastname@example.org