After three rounds in the Oklahoma high school football playoffs Woodland is back in the final four, but Pawhuska and Hominy came up short and finished their seasons on a hopeful note.
Class A defending state champions Woodland defeated Ringling on Nov. 25, 46-7, and advanced to the semi-finals against Thomas-Fay-Custer. They meet Thomas Dec. 2 at 7:30 p.m. at Enid High School for a chance to defend their title in the state championship game.
Woodland coach Joe Sindaler said the team has had yet another interesting post-season schedule.
The team swept past Hulbert in the first round and beat them 36-6. But things changed when they met Wynnewood in the second round.
“Wynnewood is a really, really quality opponent, one of top 5 teams in the state,” Sindelar said. “We were pretty pleased to get past Wynnewood, we didn’t really play all that well, Wynnewood was so good, very athletic.”
But the Cougars got by with a score of 18-12.
Sindelar said his team picked up the pieces and fixed some mistakes and came back strong against Ringling in the third round, defeating them 46-7.
Now the Cougars meet a familiar opponent in the semi finals. Last year they met and beat Thomas in the semi-finals 46-26 and went on to win the state championship title.
Sindelar said the Thomas team likes to run a spread offense and run the ball a lot, which Woodland can adjust to.
He said there’s little for he and his team to worry about. He said as always they’re ready for the next game.
“Our kids the last two years seem to have that resilience, they perform in big games very well, they don’t panic they just do a great job,” he said. “We’re pretty excited for our game tomorrow.”
So far the Cougars remain unbeaten with a 12-0 record.
The Bucks finished the regular season 5-5 but couldn’t get past the second round of the Class A playoff game with Dibble. The Bucks fell 22-52 on Nov. 18 in a road game.
Hominy defeated Fairland 21-20 on the road on Nov. 11 for the first playoff win.
The Bucks came from behind and were able to defeat Fairland with a minute and 10 seconds left.
Hominy coach Scott Harmon said it was a thrill for the team that wasn’t expected to go very far.
“I was a big win for us, we did a good job throwing the ball, running the ball,” he said. “They did pretty well, they kind of had big eyes (in the beginning) once they had a playoff win under their belt, they felt better about it.”
The Bucks moved onto the second round and met Dibble, who didn’t waste any time getting numbers on the board.
He said his team held on for two quarters and entered the half down 8-22, and lost momentum in the third quarter.
“That’s when the wheels fell off the wagons a little bit,” Harmon said. “Things kind of got away from us late.”
The game ran away from them and Hominy took a 52-22 loss that ended their season with a record of 6-6.
The Bucks lose eight seniors including Osage player Talon Miles Satepauhoodle. Harmon said at the beginning of the season the team loss four two-way starters and had to fill gaps with some younger players.
He added that having young players makes the team stronger for the next season.
“We’re excited about it, we’re going to have somebody to replace two senior tailbacks…up front we’re going to be pretty good,” Harmon said. “I was pleased with how the kids played. We have some positive things to look forward to in the future.”
The Pawhuska Huskies didn’t exactly have the regular season they wanted but made the most of their post season.
The Huskies finished the regular season 5-5 and met Adair in the first round.
In a nail-biting game that went into overtime, Pawhuska pulled through with a 19-13 victory.
Pawhuska coach Eddy Scott said the win may have been a surprise to many but he knew his team was just as capable of a post-season win.
“They didn’t expect us to come up and beat them,” he said. “They fought hard, we happened to come out in the end of it…(it was a) very tight, close game.”
The Huskies advanced to the second round where they hosted Morris, an opponent they’ve met plenty of times in the past.
Scott said it was a tough first half but once again the Huskies pulled through in the end.
“We keep it close and turn the second half. We got a few turnovers here and there but our kids played hard in the end,” he said. “The kids did exactly what we asked them to do.”
The Huskies finished with 17-0 win and advanced to the third around where they hosted Lindsey.
Pawhuska fell to Lindsey 6-20 and Scott said his team knew it wasn’t going to be easy.
“When you get to the third round of the tournament the competition gets a lot more difficult, we just ran into someone that was better than us,” he said. “They were better than us up front, we couldn’t get anything going offensively, they were just better than us on that day.”
Pawhuska is the only losing opponent to Lindsey that was able to hold them to a low-scoring game.
The Huskies ended their season 7-6 overall.
Scott said he never doubted his team’s ability even if others did. He said his team played well and have a lot to look forward next season.
“I think we surprised a lot of people at the end of the season,” he said. “Our kids played well. We knew we could make it in the playoffs; it was just a matter of where we would fall. Overall I knew that we could be in the playoffs.”
The Huskies lose 10 seniors including three known Osages; Gene Big Soldier, Jr., Norris Bighorse and Jeremy Iron.