The Duncan Banner

November 20, 2013

Winning season gives Outlaws hope for future

John McKelvey
The Duncan Banner

MARLOW — Marlow’s record in 2011 was 1-9. Now the team expects to win.

With a winning season under his belt, Rob Renshaw spoke about the foundation that the seniors have laid. He pointed to that change in mentality where the Outlaws expect to be on the winning side every Friday night.

“They’ve come a long way and set the foundation for everyone coming up,” Renshaw said. “Winning is a habit. Unfortunately, so is losing. We have turned that corner where the expectation is that we expect to win.”

For the seniors, to make the playoffs in two consecutive seasons meant a lot. However, Renshaw knows there needs to be another step.

Since the team has finished fourth in its district the past two years, it has had to face Seminole on the road in the opening round. Both games were blowouts. Though 2013’s game was a little closer, Renshaw made a point that Marlow doesn’t want another fourth-place finish.

Next year, the Outlaws depart for an entirely different division. This one will be spearheaded by Plainview, Lone Grove and Sulphur instead of Tuttle, Blanchard and Jones. Blanchard, the defending Class 3A state champions, and Tuttle both came away with blowouts against Marlow. Jones won by a one-point margin. The Outlaws beat Lone Grove by 40 points and Sulphur by seven.

“Traditionally, that’s where Marlow has gone,” Renshaw said. “We’re not unfamiliar with those guys.”

The Outlaws have 13 seniors who played their final game against Seminole, according to the team’s roster on hudl.com. Two of those seniors, Trey Coffman and Kagan Blackburn, have provided consistency for the team’s rushing attack. Renshaw explained that they have combined for close to 2,000 yards on the ground, a feat seldom accomplished.

“They ran hard and did a good job,” Renshaw said. “The big key was they didn’t turn the ball over.”

Turnovers were a big part of what Renshaw thought made the team successful. The ability to take the ball away when the Outlaws needed to, and to control possession when it wanted to, was crucial.

“We didn’t give it to them very often and took it away quite a bit,” Renshaw said. “An opportunistic defense and an offense that doesn’t give it back, you can probably look at every game Friday, Saturday and Sunday, the team that turned it over more probably didn’t win.”

While the running backs didn’t have fumbling issues, sophomore quarterback Braeden O’Dell ran the offense efficiently, Renshaw said. O’Dell seemed to take a larger role at the end of the season and even threw the ball 19 times in the loss to Seminole.

“I see him more comfortable running the offense,” Renshaw said. “He’s got a poise about him that most sophomores don’t have. There were very few times where you kind of felt like it had gotten away from him.”