One mountain left to climb
WEATHERFORD - Semifinals aren't supposed to be simple, but backed by its championship caliber, Tipton made it look like a breeze.
No. 2 Tipton (12-1) raced past Timberlake (11-2), 56-8, in a Class C semifinal on Friday night at Southwest Oklahoma State University in Weatherford.
After eclipsing the century mark last week, dropping an absurd 106 points on Regent Prep in the quarterfinals, Tipton's high octane offense was back at it once more making highlight reel plays left and right.
Tipton nearly mercy-ruled Regent Prep, but the Tigers couldn't close the door early.
"That was a little bit of a message saying, 'Hey, we gotta get this thing done.' I think it helped us," Tipton coach Travis White said.
In the semis, it was the defense, forcing three turnovers in addition to four turnovers on downs that sealed the dominant victory launching Tipton into yet another state championship game.
"All the attention last week was, 'Look at Tipton's offense. They scored 106, but they gave up 58. Where's the defense?' Well, the defense is pretty good," White said. "Tip your hat to Regent Prep last week those guys can score. I'll go to battle with our defense any day. We're scrappy and opportunistic defensively."
Tipton will meet the winner of top-ranked Pond Creek-Hunter and No. 4 Tyrone which play this afternoon at Northwest Oklahoma State University in Alva in the other Class C semifinal. Still to be decided, the date and location of the state final will be announced by the OSSAA later this weekend.
"It's awesome," White said. "We've had a few opportunities to go back-to-back so we're locked in mentally to get it done. We know whoever we play is going to be a tough opponent."
Tipton set the tone from the get go and never looked back.
"The SWOSU atmosphere is unreal. This is a home away from home for us," said Tipton running back Dillon Schmidt, who had 165 rushing yards and three touchdowns. "We know in the semifinals the worst team can play like the best team. The atmosphere is everything so we knew we had to put our foot on their throat and keep it there."
On the second play from scrimmage, Tipton recovered a fumble and a few plays later, Lane Chandler, who had two touchdowns, scored a 27-yard touchdown run on a quarterback keeper to give the Tigers an 8-0 lead just minutes into the game with 9:47 in the into the game with 9:47 in the opening quarter.
On the next drive, SemaJ McBride, who had 121 yards and a touchdown, broke loose on an end around run and took it 58 yards to the house to give Tipton a 14-0 lead midway through the first.
Tipton outgained Timberlake on offense 371-248 in total offense with 368 of those yards coming on the ground for Tipton.
Timberlake finally got on the board with 11:06 in the second quarter when quarterback Joey Najera found Utah Bishard in the back of the end zone for a four yard touchdown pass.