Top-Ranked Hornets Blank Spartans, 21-0
10.28.17 by Ron Holt
The battle for the Class 6AII-District 2 championship between top-ranked Booker T.
Washington and sixth-ranked Bixby boiled down to defensive execution.
With nine minutes left in the second quarter and throughout the second half, Bixby High's
Spartans displayed hard-nosed defensive football in blanking the Hornets.
Booker T.'s defense, however, threw its second straight shutout and fourth this season. The
dominating defensive effort and an early offensive eruption allowed the Hornets to upend the
Spartans, 21-0, and capture the district title in front of a large, chilly Lee Snider Field crowd
Washington, which scored 15 first quarter points and six early in the second stanza, improved
to 8-1 overall and 5-0 in the district race while the Spartans dipped to 5-4 and 4-1 heading into
next Friday's district showdown at Sand Springs.
The Hornets ended with 243 yards total offense, led by a 155-yard rushing effort. Bixby
couldn't get untracked offensively as the Spartans ended with 115 total yards while being
limited to 11 yards rushing on 33 attempts.
Bixby experienced limited offensive success but the lack of a running game caused numerous
problems for senior quarterback Staton King, who was forced to scramble much of the
"I was pleased with the way our defense played in the second half for sure. They put us in
position to get back into the game but we just never could get anything going offensively,"
Bixby head coach Loren Montgomery said afterward. "We had trouble getting open and
"We made some mistakes but we were able to shut them down the second half. That's a good
team we played. We're going to have to grow up and learn from it."
On their second possession, the Hornets took the lead on a 32-yard scoring pass from
quarterback Phillip Wheatley to Dewayne Cooks. Josh McSoud's point-after kick gave the
visitors a 7-0 lead with 5:21 showing in the first quarter.
On its next possession, Washington needed three plays to go up 15-0 as the
Wheatley-to-Cooks combination clicked for a 38-yard, tackle-breaking touchdown burst with
3:03 showing in the first quarter.
Booker T. kept applying the offensive pressure early in the second quarter as Thomas Grayson
broke free outside left and out-ran the Spartans for a 59-yard touchdown making it a 21-0
game at the 9:20 mark of the second quarter.
Bixby's defense stiffened from that point on as the determined Spartans turned back a couple
of Hornet threats.
"The first half we were kind of bumpy but we made a few adjustments and came out in the
second half and shut them down," said talented senior linebacker Coby Tillman, who was
credited with 12 solo tackles. "From a defensive stand-point we've got to play like that for four
"Our defense just needs to do our jobs, if we do our job then those big plays don't happen.
When we busted an assignment, they made plays. We're going to feed off this game in
preparing for Sand Springs and into the playoffs," he added.
Teammate Colton Tafoya agreed, "We'll come back and be ready for Sand Springs," Tafoya
said. "We came together in the locker room at halftime and talked about what we needed to
do … we tried our hardest the second half and shut them out. We knew it would be a fight
from the beginning."
Bixby tried many things to put points on the board but the hosts failed to maintain any
consistency. The Spartans went 0-for-5 on fourth down attempts, came up short on a fake
punt and had a pair of passes picked off. Nothing worked.
"We competed and I thought we played good defense but offensively, up front, it was just one
guy messing up at a time and we just never could get rolling," said senior offensive tackle Josh
Owens. "They are fast … they were just what they looked like on film. They are super athletic
and made a lot of plays
"We've just got to move on to next week. We had great practices this past week and that's
what we've got to do from here on."
NEXT GAME - Bixby wraps up the regular season at Sand Springs Friday, Nov. 3. Kickoff at
Memorial Stadium is set for 7 p.m. Sand Springs routed Bartlesville, 55-13, at home Friday
night to improve to 5-4 on the season and 3-2 in the district.
A Bixby win would assure the Spartans of a first-round home playoff game. If Bixby loses, the
runner-up finish in the district behind Washington could be decided by points,
NOTABLES - Sand Springs' season has featured a 59-21 home loss to Pulaski Academy of
Arkansas, a 21-20 home loss to Choctaw, a 28-14 win at Putnam City West, a 31-16 win at
Sapulpa, a 26-21 win at Yukon, a 41-7 win at Ponca City, a 40-34 home loss to Muskogee
and a win over Bartlesville. … In other district games Nov. 3, Tulsa Washington visits
Bartlesville, Muskogee goes to Ponca City and Sapulpa goes outside the league to host
Broken Arrow. ... Bixby's Clayton Barbour intercepted a deflected Hornet pass early while
teammate Brennan Presley picked off a Wheatley pass in the end zone in the third quarter. …
Washington's Grayson rushed 23 times for 119 yards and one TD while wide receiver Cooks
caught three passes for 70 yards and two touchdowns. … Bixby was hurt by a costly personal
foul call early in the second quarter when it appeared the Spartans had stopped the Hornets
and Tillman appeared to have stripped the ball from a Hornet running back but the play was