October 30, 2012

Chicks send seniors off with win

Aaron Colen, Sports Editor,
The Express-Star

CHICKASHA — On senior night, The Chickasha High School football team ended a three-game losing streak by beating Southeast on Friday at home, and had some big plays in the process.

The Fightin' Chicks improved their record to 4-5 overall and 2-4 in district play with a 33-12 win over the Spartans.

Senior Brandon Wright got his first action at quarterback since he started week one against Anadarko, and it wasn't just a token senior night start for Wright.

Wright threw two touchdown passes in his final home game, including a 54-yard throw to Shaq Oliver late in the second quarter.

He was 5-for-14 passing with 104 yards and two touchdowns, and rushed for 68 yards on 21 carries.

"We were really proud of the job Brandon did coming in after being off for about eight weeks," head coach Tom Cobble said.

Cobble said the decision to play Wright at quarterback was made at the last minute, when the staff found out the usual starter, Cade Morris, wouldn't be able to throw effectively due to a thumb injury. Morris still played on defense and special teams.

"We made the decision at about two minutes to 7," Cobble said. "I thought Cade was playing up through warm-ups. It's just a jammed thumb, but he couldn't throw and he couldn't grip the ball very well."

Wright ran the offense well, both throwing and running, and he got a lot of help from running back Daniel Neff, who scored the first two touchdowns of the game.

In the first quarter, Neff scored on a three-yard run, breaking several tackles and fighting into the left-front corner of the end zone. He broke a 23-yard touchdown run in the second quarter on the first play of a drive to put the Chicks up 14-0 early.

The very next drive, Chickasha again scored on the first play, when Oliver caught the 54-yard touchdown pass, and the 20-0 lead was enough for Chickasha to be in control the rest of the game.

"It was just executing," Cobble said about the big plays. "Going against a defensive front that's a little bit more our size and our caliber, tonight we did the things we wanted to do."

Oliver also caught a 15-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter. He was responsible for all of Chickasha's receiving yards with four catches, 105 yards and two touchdowns.

The Chickasha defense also played its part, continuing its trend of forcing opposing offenses into turnovers.

The Fightin' Chicks recovered two fumbles and intercepted Southeast quarterback Micah Hunter twice.

"When you're playing hard, and you hit hard and you're flying around, you're going to cause some of those things," Cobble said. "That's what we need to do next week also."

After being shut out in the first half, Southeast came out of the halftime locker room and returned the opening kickoff of the third quarter 75 yards for a touchdown, but had the extra point blocked.

The Spartans pulled within two scores of Chickasha when Tavon Cramer caught a 10-yard touchdown pass with 1:19 left in the third quarter, but those would be Southeast's last points.

Neff scored his third rushing touchdown of the game in the fourth quarter to put the game away, and finished with 173 yards on 18 carries.

Chickasha's seniors were honored before the game, and their last time playing at Memorial Stadium turned out to be a good one.

"They played well, and they were excited all week about the whole night and playing their last game they always get a little emotional," Cobble said. "It was just a good night, a good feeling."

The Fightin' Chicks will wrap up their season this Friday with a road game against the Duncan High School Demons.