What didn’t get answered?
• Hilldale’s quarterback question.
Claremore Sequoyah was younger and lighter, which created a mismatch but little clarity between the two battling for the job. Melchesidech Porter rushed for 150 yards and three touchdowns while Johnnie Durrossette passed for 201 yards and three touchdowns in the 59-13 Hornets’ win. A tougher test comes this week, but more on that in a bit.
• If Fort Gibson is up to loaded senior class expectations.
Initial results seem inconclusive. Coach Greg Whiteley wasn’t happy with tackling and blown early opportunities in a game that got away early, 28-0 at halftime and 42-21 at Doc Wadley Stadium. Yet, in the Tigers’ pre-district juggernaut that continues against 3A Berryhill this week and Wagoner next week, Tahlequah in 5A may well be the best Tiger outfit it has had in a nice postseason string in Brad Gilbert’s reign. Dae Dae Leathers racked up 212 of his 258 yards in the first half and Tahlequah showed great balance with Tate Christian 10 of 12 for 194 yards on the night passing.
One bright spot for Fort Gibson was Tavien Woodworth, who had 172 yards on a workhorse 34 carries. On the flip side, he was stopped just short of the end zone on a fourth and goal in the first half. FGHS needs a better battle this week.
What Week 2 might.
• Who is thrust into the 6AII contender conversation Friday when Muskogee goes to Midwest City.
The Bombers, a deceptive 0-2, are expected to give Stillwater a run in 6AII-1 along with Del City and Lawton, but in a brutal early schedule have lost 54-21 to Arkansas 7A toughie Bentonville and 31-0 to 5A power Carl Albert. With Bixby giving Jenks its worst loss (57-7) since 1944, and Booker T taking down Bishop Kelley last week, it’s a win with credibility tags on it.
Muskogee looked good in a lot of ways in beating McAlester 43-7. Ty Williams is an improved passer as he showed in the first half with two touchdowns (a third, however, was overthrown), and Jimmie Coleman is explosive out of the backfield as he’s been the past couple years. The defensive line and linebackers can be imposing as well. But 127 yards in penalties made for a sloppy (at times) outing.
• How really good Vian’s defense is.
The season opener was a good first test. A repeat act by the strength of this year’s team will overcome a big-time test in Lincoln Christian, and on the road at that, after holding Eufaula to a safety in a battle of 2A ranked teams. The Wolverines won’t see St. John Stadium until week 5. LC followed a 51-19 win over Inola with a 49-14 of another 2A ranked team in Jones.
• A Madden 2019 battle in Checotah
They’ve had their recent shares of big scores in the series, but with Hilldale putting up 59 points with two battling QBs and lots of explosiveness, and Checotah having Eastern Michigan-bound Jacob Barrett at quarterback, last year’s Phoenix Newcomer of the Year in Dontierre Fisher at running back, the scoreboard will be kept busy.
• An out-of-area game with an area twist: Call it the Rougher Coaches Alumni Bowl. Sallisaw’s second-year head coach Randon Lowe squared off with Jason Medrano, making his head coaching debut at Catoosa with David Heath as his defensive coordinator. Sallisaw won 22-14 in overtime. Catoosa came away with no points late in regulation on a blocked field goal after an offensive pass interference call halted a potential touchdown.