By Andrew Glover
LANGSTON, Okla. —
Earlier this week, Coyle coach Shane Weathers said he wanted his team to strike quickly against the South Coffeyville Lions and get the game out of hand. Friday night at W.E. Anderson Stadium on the campus of Langston University, the Bluejackets did just that, scoring 32 points in the first quarter en route to a 58-8 victory.
“I wanted to strike quick and have good execution,” Weathers said. “We are putting a lot of different sets in and a lot of different looks. I think we scored a little too quick at times. I wanted to look at other plays. It’s a tribute to these guys, they worked hard all week.”
Coyle (8-2, 8-1) had four possessions in which it scored touchdowns on the opening play. Senior Fidel Simpson caught a 36-yard touchdown pass from junior Ryan Weathers. Senior Joseph Hales scored on a 62-yard run. The junior quarterback followed with a 26-yard run. In the second quarter, Simpson broke a 69-yard run and scored on a 32-yard interception return that put Coyle in position to end the game at halftime.
Hales gave his teammates credit for his touchdown.
“My teammates behind me opened up the hole,” Hales said. “It helped a lot. It was a big surprise to everybody. Hopefully it will help us going into next weekend.”
Hales primarily has starred on defense for the Bluejackets and came up with a fumble recovery in the first quarter.
Coach Weathers said he had good performance from his seniors.
“I did a series in the first quarter where we put all eight seniors on the field and we drove down the field and scored. I’ve never had that many seniors before and I was really proud to see that,” he said.
For most of the first half the Bluejackets’ defense was stingy. The Lions had three drives end in punts and four turnovers. South Coffeyville had one drive toward the end of the first quarter in which it picked up four first downs, primarily running the ball. The drive stalled at Coyle’s 30 as Tanner Whitney’s fourth-down pass fell incomplete. The Lions kept the game alive as Whitney launched a hail mary to the end zone and Kyle Rowe came down with the ball. Whitney ran to the outside to convert the 2-point conversion which put the Lions a point under the required 45-point margin for the mercy rule to be invoked.
“Our defense came out really aggressive,” Shane Weathers said. “They came out with a funny look on offense. Lining up in formations we haven’t seen before. They tried some trickery stuff and we hung in there after the first series and just held our own.”
“We were rolling on all cylinders,” Ryan Weathers said. “Our offensive line was hooking us up with good blocks. The holes were wide open especially on that one that Joe (Hales) ran 60 yards. Our line does everything for us.”
The Bluejackets quickly ended the game as junior Gary Hunter took the first play of Coyle’s drive for a 65-yard run.
The victory gives Coyle its best finish in the regular season and in district.
“We lost a couple of games at the beginning because we didn’t know where our identity was,” Ryan Weathers said. “When we figured it out, we were clicking every time.”
Coyle clinched the second seed and will play the third-place team in District 4-B in Langston. Entering Friday’s game, Dewar held that position.