Bixby Ousts Jenks, Meets Owasso In Class 6AI Championship

By Ron Holt

BROKEN ARROW – “They (coaches) told us all week there’s not many times in life you get a second chance. We got one today and took advantage of it.”

Speaking was Bixby senior cornerback-receiver Jakeb Snyder following the Spartans’ dominating second half performance in a 28-14 Class 6AI state semifinal victory over Jenks in front of 12,000 Broken Arrow Memorial Stadium fans here last Friday afternoon.

In the regular season finale three weeks ago, Jenks, the defending 6AI state champion, toppled the Spartans, 38-35, ending Bixby’s 58-game winning streak. The Spartans spent time during the following bye week correcting mistakes that contributed to the loss while anticipating a rematch.

Bixby, 11-1 and winners of 60 of the past 61 games, advances to the Class 6AI state championship game during its first season in the state’s largest classification. The Spartans challenge Owasso (9-4) at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, in the title game at University of Central Oklahoma’s Chad Richison Stadium in Edmond. Owasso, which lost earlier this season to Union, 35-17, capitalized on its second chance against the Redhawks (11-1), pulling out a 50-47, six-overtime win in a semifinal game here last Friday night.

“It feels good to have an opportunity to play another week,” Bixby head coach Loren Montgomery said. “At this time of the year when you get to practice and watch film it’s special … I was really proud of our guys. It took everybody this afternoon … you can go down the line and all of our guys made really good plays.”

The Bixby-Jenks rematch was sloppy at times as each team had four turnovers. It was fiercely contested until the Spartans took control – offensively and defensively – in the second half.

The Spartans scored first as junior speedster Kordell Gouldsby broke a trio of tackle attempts during an 18-yard touchdown run and Levi Hoffman added the conversion kick for a 7-0 Spartan lead with 8:28 left in the first quarter.

Jenks responded on the following possession as senior quarterback Ike Owens scampered 47 yards up the middle for the game-tying touchdown with 6:59 showing in the opening quarter. The Trojans wasted little time adding to the scoreboard on their next possession as Owens connected with Delmar Gray for a 74- yard TD pass play and 14-7 at the five-minute mark of the first stanza.

Bixby tied the game when senior Jersey Robb took a direct snap 29 yards for a Spartan TD with 5:46 showing in the first half. Robb broke numerous tackle attempts while spinning into the end zone. The drive was set up by an impressive pass interception by Snyder at the Jenks 29.

Bixby was its own worst enemy in the first half. A lengthy Spartan drive from their own 34 to the Jenks 13 ended when quarterback Connor Kirby fumbled when hit and Jenks’ Jalyn Stanford recovered. During Jenks’ next drive, Owens fumbled with Spartan defensive lineman Brandon Hobbs recovering and carrying the ball around 40 yards to the end zone, but the play was called back by an illegal block.

But on Bixby’s first play after the interception a pass from Kirby to Cale Fugate was intercepted by Jenks’ Sam Stone at the Jenks’ 14-yard line. Stone ended another lengthy Spartan drive late in the first half with his second interception deep in Trojan territory with five seconds left.

“It was sloppy at times. We’ve got to clean those things up, things like putting the ball on the ground or throwing the ball to the other team and we had a touchdown called back by a blindside block,” coach Montgomery said. “I don’t think anyone got their dobbers down, though.”

In the first half, Jenks compiled 218 total offensive yards while capitalizing on three Spartan turnovers and a time of possession advantage of 15:38 to 8:17. In the second half, the Trojans were shut out and limited to 48 total yards.

Spartan offensive coordinator Tyler Schneider and staff and defensive coordinator Rodney Flowers and staff made significant halftime adjustments. The players executed the plans.

“We felt at halftime that it was 0-0. We played really sloppy in the first half, so we just wanted to forget about it and come out and have a new game in the second half,” Snyder said. “We came out the second half and played as one and it took care of itself.”


The second half was a second chance opportunity for tenacious Spartan junior linebacker Hank Puckett, who, by his own admission, didn’t play well in the opening half.

“We started slow, I say we, but their two touchdowns at the beginning were singularly my fault on both of those plays,” said Puckett, who is the Spartans’ season tackle leader with 117 total tackles, 14 tackles for loss and four sacks. “It was not the half I wanted to have at all, so I told the guys at halftime that I’ll get it fixed and I’ll step up.

“It wasn’t pretty, but we’ve got one more game and that’s been our goal. A lot of people don’t get second chances. We took advantage of it and we’re going to Edmond,” added Puckett, who had a couple of bone- jarring tackles of the Trojans’ Owens in the second half.

Bixby took the second half kickoff and, aided by a couple of 15-yard penalties on Jenks, put together a lengthy drive which ended in a 13-yard go-ahead touchdown pass from Kirby to senior tight end Luke Hasz for a 21-14 Spartan lead with 9:22 left in the third quarter.

“I love it when I have the feeling that the ball is coming my way,” said Hasz, who caught nine passes for 113 yards and a TD. “It’s a great feeling that Connor and our coaching staff have trust and faith to throw me the ball.

“This is a great feeling beating them, but we’re not satisfied yet. We’ll enjoy this today and tomorrow we’ll do the same thing we always do … we’ll be back in at 8 a.m. lifting and watching film,” he added. A Jenks drive into Spartan territory midway through the third quarter ended when Owens passed to an open receiver, but Bixby’s Fugate made a spectacular interception ending the threat.

“It was a phenomenal play … Cale did a good job of breaking on it and catching the ball,” said coach Montgomery. “Cale is incredibly fast.”

The two teams traded turnovers as the third quarter ended and fourth frame began. Bixby’s Robb fumbled after a short run to the Jenks’ 13 with the Trojans recovering as the third quarter ended. But, on the

Trojans’ second offensive play of the fourth quarter, Spartan senior Dylan Hasz stepped in front of an Owens’ pass, handing BHS the ball at the JHS 36.

Five plays later, Kirby sealed the win when he was escorted by numerous blockers on a seven-yard touchdown run. Hoffman’s point-after kick gave BHS a 28-14 lead with 9:30 remaining in the game. Kirby overcame early adversity to finish with positive numbers. He was 25-of-32 passing for 221 yards and a TD while rushing 26 times for 94 yards and a score.

NOTABLES – Bixby captured its fifth victory in the past seven games with Jenks. … Spartan senior Cale Fugate intercepted his fifth pass of the season against Jenks while teammates Jakeb Snyder intercepted his fourth pass and Dylan Hasz recorded his third pass theft this season. … Jenks quarterback Ike Owens broke loose on a third-and-15 play on the Trojans’ first possession before Spartan Jett Turner, who moved from Jenks, made an impressive open field tackle short of a first down. … Bixby was six-for- 15 on third down attempts and one-for-five on fourth down attempts. Jenks was 3-for-16 on third downs and one-for-seven on fourth down. … Bixby was penalized 10 times for 80 yards and Jenks was flagged eight times for 60 yards. … Spartan senior quarterback Connor Kirby is having a productive season. He’s passed for 1,700 yards, completing 74 percent of his passes. He has 26 touchdowns and been intercepted three times. He’s also the team rushing leader with 933 yards on 120 carries and 14 TDs. Despite being sidelined with injuries, Jersey Robb has 614 rushing yards and 10 TDs. Receiving-wise, Cale Fugate has 35 catches for 651 yards and 11 touchdowns; Kordell Gouldsby has 616 yards on 45 catches and six TDs; Luke Hasz had 597 receiving on 35 catches and nine TDs while Snyder has 48 catches for 415 yards and five scores. … Bixby and Owasso met once in the state playoffs with the Spartans capturing a 7-3 semifinal victory in 1982. …Bixby and Owasso last played in the 2010-2011 seasons in Class 6A-District 4 with the Rams winning 44-20 in both games. … Owasso won state championships in 2019, 2017 and 1974. Current Ram head coach Bill Blankenship coached the 2019 and 2017 teams.

TITLE OPPONENT – The 6A1 championship game features a rematch of the Spartans-Owasso season opener on Aug. 25 at TU’s Skelly Stadium at H.A. Chapman Field. Erupting in the second half, Bixby rolled to a 49-14 victory.


After a scoreless quarter, Owasso led 7-0 after a one-yard touchdown run by senior quarterback Mason Willingham. Jake Adams kicked the conversion. Bixby scored on a 13-yard TD pass from Austin Havens to Jakeb Snyder, but the extra point kick failed with OHS leading 7-6.

Bixby took the lead when Connor Kirby ran 85 yards for a TD and ran for the two-point conversion for a 14-7 advantage. The Spartans erupted for 21 third quarter points – a 25-yard pass interception return by Sam McCormick, a one-yard TD run by Jersey Robb and a 20-yard burst by Kirby for a 35-7 lead.

Owasso scored on a 22-yard pass from Willingham to senior Anthony Hills early in the fourth quarter before Bixby added a six-yard TD run by Robb and a 35-yard TD pass from Kirby to McCormick midway through the fourth quarter.

Bixby ended with 495 total yards while Owasso had 371. Kirby passed for 139 yards and a TD while Havens passed for 118 yards and a score. Willingham passed for 296 yards and one TD while being intercepted once. Kirby’s 119 rushing yards led Bixby while Willingham topped OHS with 41 yards. Owasso’s star receiver Cole Adams caught seven passes for 178 yards in the first half before being injured and missing the rest of the game.

This season, Willingham has 1,899 passing yards and 15 touchdowns while being intercepted five times. He also rushed 132 times for 782 yards and 10 TDs. Anthony Hills has 55 pass receptions for 962 yards and eight TDs while J’Kharri Thomas has 60 receptions for 502 yards and four scores.

Senior linebacker Braeden Foster leads the defense with 125 total tackles, six for loss, while linebacker Kunta Jordan has 109 total tackles, 14 for loss. Junior defensive back Derek Lockridge intercepted five passes.

SCOREBOARD Bixby’s 2022 Results: Owasso, at TU (W, 49-14), at Springdale, Arkansas Har-Ber (W, 59-0), Sand Springs (W, 67-3), at Norman North (W, 63-7), Southmoore (W, 80-0), at Enid (W, 77- 14), Broken Arrow (W, 77-17), Westmoore (W, 73-6), at Moore (W, 64-7), Jenks (L, 38-35), Enid, state quarterfinals (W, 63-0), vs. Jenks, semifinals at Broken Arrow (W, 28-14).

Owasso 2022 Results: Bixby, at TU (L, 49-14), at Jenks (L, 14-7), at Broken Arrow (W, 27-26), Union (L, 35-17), at Mustang (L, 27-17), Edmond North (W, 30-16), at Yukon (W, 36-17), Edmond Memorial (W, 37-14), at Edmond Santa Fe (W, 13-7), Norman (W, 24-14), Westmoore, first round (W, 41-7), at Norman North, quarterfinals (W, 41-34), Union, semifinals at Broken Arrow (W, 50-47, 6 OT’s).

Bixby 28, Jenks 14
(Class 6AI Semifinal)
First Quarter

BHS – Kordell Gouldsby 18 run (Levi Hoffman kick), 8:28 JHS – Ike Owens 47 run (Andrew Pursell kick), 6:59

JHS – Delmar Gray 74 pass from Owens (Pursell kick), 5:00

Second Quarter

BHS – Jersey Robb 29 run (Hoffman kick), 5:46

Third Quarter

BHS – Luke Hasz 13 pass from Connor Kirby (Hoffman kick), 9:22

Fourth Quarter

BHS – Kirby 7 run (Hoffman kick), 9:30

2022-11-29T15:25:19-05:00November 29th, 2022|

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