Thriller in Cameron Stadium
“Bragging doesn’t win any games.You work hard and play as hard as you can. Just because they say they have a bunch of D-I guys that doesn’t scare our guys.”
MACARTHUR HEAD COACH ON THE PLAY OF THE HIGHLANDERS FRIDAY NIGHT
The MacArthur coaching staff knew it was coming. Sometimes that's a recipe for disaster, but Friday night at Cameron Stadium it wasn't.
With assistant coach Max Plunk yelling in the press box "here comes the double pass!" to his coaches on the field, the Highlander defense sniffed it out and stripped the ball from Lawton High's Chris Jones with 2:45 left in the fourth quarter to preserve a 35-33 win over the Wolverines.
It was MacArthur's first win in the series since a 21-14 win in 2011.
"They hadn't put (Jones) in all game. When they put him in, we knew something was up," MacArthur head coach Brett Manning said.
That fumble recovery finally allowed Class 5A No. 5 MacArthur (2-0) to exhale after it seemed like a let-down loss was in the cards. Lawton High's Darreyl Patterson scored on a 52-yard pass from Jack Meservy down the right sideline to get within two points.
Three plays later, the Class 6A No. 4 Wolverines (1-1) had the ball No. 4 Wolverines (1-1) had the ball again after Mac quarterback Will Collins threw his second interception on a 3rd and 9 play at Lawton High's 46-yard line. Lawton High's Mikal Thompson stepped in front of Jacques Henderson to give his a team a chance.
On the ensuing drive, LHS went up top for Kalin Sadler, but the pass fell incomplete. Patterson ran up the middle for two yards on the next play before Meservy went to the air again for Marcheenan Hair. Hair was wide open on the right side of the field and Meservy's pass looked to be on the money, but Hair retracted his arms at the last moment and the pass fell harmlessly to the turf.
The next play was the fateful double pass attempt.
"I called one play all night long and it was the double pass, I should've stayed out of it," LHS head coach Randy Breeze said.
Mac picked up two first downs thanks to the hard running of Davon Finkley. The senior looked like he belonged in the 1970s rushing 37 times for 148 yards and three scores.
"He's a stud. He's a horse. We knew the strength of our team is our offensive line. We start every offensive practice with a get-off-the-ball drill that emphasizes coming off the ball and being physical. We told them 'that's how we start practice and that's how we're going to end this game.'"