SAND SPRINGS — Westmoore head coach Billy Langford had a simple message for his team after their first-round playoff conquest of Sand Springs on Friday night.
“We’re alive another week,” Langford said. “I knew there was something special about this team when we stepped on the field for our first preseason scrimmage. I still think there’s something very special about this team, and we’re not done showing people that yet.”
Westmoore quarterback Bryson Lee made four key plays on fourth down, with two of those resulting in touchdowns, as the seventh-ranked Jaguars notched a 31-10 victory over 10th-ranked Sand Springs in the first round of the Class 6A playoffs.
Lee threw for a touchdown and ran for another score on fourth down, plus had two long conversion runs on Westmoore’s first score of the night, a 24-yard field goal that capped a 15-play, 53-yard drive.
“We came through in the clutch when we needed to tonight,” Lee said. “We thought we could exploit their defense and we came up with some big plays when we needed to have them.”
Lee paced a Jaguar offense that rolled up 411 yards of offense, including a punishing 247 yards on the ground. Meanwhile, the high-octane Sandite offense was held in check for the majority of the night by Westmoore’s defense. Sand Springs (6-5) could never get its ground game going as the Sandites were held to just 46 yards on 19 carries.
“We didn’t execute tonight,” said Sand Springs head coach Dustin Kinard. “We just couldn’t get anything clicking. We went into halftime thinking we had just played our worst half of football all season, and we just couldn’t find the big play in the second half. Westmoore is a very good football team.”
Westmoore (8-3) would extend the lead to 10-0 midway through the second quarter, with Lee once again finding some fourth-down magic. Facing fourth-and-4 from the Sandite 8, Lee threw a perfectly timed pass to DeShawn Lookout in the front corner of the end zone to give the visitors their first touchdown of the night.
After Sand Springs kicked a 25-yard field goal to slice the lead to 10-3, it appeared the Jaguars would just run out the clock after getting the ball at their own 14 with 2:01 left in the half. However, Kieron Hardrick ripped off a 24-yard run on Westmoore’s second-down play. After an 8-yard gain on the next play, Dahu Green stunned the Sandite defense by taking a reverse for 45 yards to the Sand Springs 3. Hardrick would then cap the quick drive with a 3-yard burst up the middle to push the Westmoore lead to 17-3.
Hardrick would finish with 131 yards on 28 carries.
Sand Springs, however, would not go quietly into the halftime locker room. Getting the ball at its own 21 with 38.1 seconds left, Davey Thayer burst through the line for 11 yards, then Cody Hale and Trey Betts connected on a 43-yard pass to move the ball to the Westmoore 25. On the next play, Hale would scramble before finding Watts in the back of the end zone for a 25-yard touchdown to slice the Westmoore lead to 17-10 with just 1 second on the clock.
“We were a little shaken by that, but we also knew we had the game in our hands,” Lee said.
That, however, would be the highlight of the night for the Sandite offense, which was blanked in the second half and had three turnovers after intermission.
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