NORMAN — The playoff picture is set for Norman High and Norman North after Week 9.
No. 4 Norman North (8-1, 6-0) guaranteed itself a district championship with a blowout win over Moore. The victory ensures that even if North were to lose to Lawton Eisenhower next week, they’ll win the district courtesy of the head-to-head tiebreaker advantage over No. 6 Edmond North (8-1, 5-1).
“Right now we need to finish out our regular season, then we’ll celebrate,” coach Wade Standley said. “Our ultimate goal is to win in the playoffs, and we’ve got to continue to get better every week to make that happen.”
For eighth-ranked NHS (7-2, 5-1), a potential final week showdown with Lawton was averted on Friday when Mustang upset the Wolverines. That means NHS is guaranteed second place in District 6A-4, along with the home playoff game that comes with it.
“No matter what happens, we still want to win next week,” coach Greg Nation said. “We finished the regular season 7-3 last season, and we want to improve on that this year by going 8-2.”
Noble’s Wood eyeing 2,000: Noble back Jimmy Wood set some big goals for himself this season. Despite missing the first game of the season, he still has a chance to reach those lofty goals.
Wood wants to reach 2,000 yards and 26 touchdowns this season, and he took another step toward that with a big game against Durant on Friday. He finished with 156 yards and three touchdowns in the 30-12 victory, bringing his season total to 1,583 yards and 22 touchdowns.
For Wood to reach the marks he’s set for himself, Noble will likely need to defeat Shawnee this week in a regular-season finale that will determine which of the two squads captures the final playoff spot in District 5A-3.
T-Wolves get a shutout: Much was expected of the Timberwolves’ defense heading into this season after they returned all 11 starters, and they haven’t disappointed. North recorded one of its most impressive performances of the season against Moore on Friday, recording its second shutout of the season.
Holding Moore, a team that has put up some big offensive games this season, is more impressive than an Oct. 4 shutout against US Grant. Even after the starters went out, the T-Wolves second unit was more than capable, stopping the Lion’s offense time and again.
“It was a complete team victory tonight,” coach Wade Standley said after the game. “I’m proud of the way my kids came out tonight and handled their business.”
Lexington with off week: Already guaranteed second place in its district and a home playoff game, Lexington (7-2, 5-1) will have a week off to prepare.
Because of an odd number of teams in District 2A-4, each team had an off week in the district schedule to fill. While some squads found replacement games, Lexington chose to keep the week open since it falls the week before the playoffs. While the Bulldogs don’t yet know exactly who their opponent will be, they’ll use the extra time to focus on making a deep run in its first trip postseason in three years.
“We’ve got a good thing going right now,” said quarterback Colton Langford. “It’s been a great season and everyone’s worked hard to get here. Now we have to stay humble and work hard and practice and take our chance at that gold ball.”
Wild win confuses playoff picture: With Mustang’s wild win over Lawton on Friday, Norman High was guaranteed second place in the district.
The rest of the playoff picture is a bit more fuzzy.
Four teams remain tied with a 3-3 district record. Out of those four squads — Lawton, Edmond Memorial, Mustang and Southmoore — only two will make the playoffs, all because of Mustang’s hard-fought victory over the Wolverines.
In the game, which Mustang won 37-34, the lead changed hands four times in the second half. Lawton fought back from a 10-point deficit to take a 34-30 lead late in the game, but Mustang’s Frankie Edwards led the Broncos on a 10-play, 80-yard drive in the final minutes to put Mustang on top for good. The Bronco defense was then able to stuff Lawton on the last drive of the game to clinch the victory and throw the playoff picture into confusion.
“You better be able to play in this district,” Mustang coach Ty Prestidge said after the game. “Outside of Norman and Edmond Santa Fe, we’re scratching and clawing.”
Mustang visits Southmoore on Friday, while Edmond Memorial hosts Putnam City West and Lawton visits Norman.