MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Sports

November 13, 2013

Prep football playoff notepad: Warner, Checotah, Stigler

Warner finds hope

Warner may have gotten some encouragement from seeing Morrison take down previously unbeaten and Class A No. 2 Kiefer 32-6 last week.

“We didn’t get game film on that game but from what I was able to gather talking to people, they can be run on a little bit and I think we can mix in the pass,”  said Eagles’ coach Mike Burdge.

The Eagles take a 6-4 mark and third-place finish in District A-8 to Kiefer, runners-up in A-7, who fell to ninth after losing their district title to Morrison.

Warner did see the Trojans go against a wing T offense against Yale in a 41-14 Kiefer win in week 7 and was encouraged by that.

“They scored early off it but got beat pretty good, running off tackle and back to the short side but not consistent enough to win the game. I think we’re better in those areas than Yale and we can throw the ball better than they did.”

But Warner has also struggled on some big stages running the football this season after going 10-0 and two rounds deep in last year’s Class A playoffs.

“Against Afton (in week 9) we struggled moving the chains. That can’t happen again,” Burdge said. “If we can get 3-4 yards a pop and keep their offense off the field on Friday, I think we’ve got a chance.”

Warner’s only definite loss this Friday is linebacker Kayden Hammons, who has a strained MCL. Dakota Beene has taken his spot and has played on and off through the year.

“He’ll do fine,” Burdge said. “We’ll put in a wrinkle or two that will give us some extra confidence but at this point it’s like I told our kids, we have to treat this like a new season and by that I mean the seniors have to play like fifth-year seniors, the juniors like seniors, the sophomores like juniors and freshmen like sophomores.”

The winner will likely travel to Wynnewood, a heavy favorite against Quinton, for next week’s second round.

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