The Duncan Banner


October 27, 2012

Comets defeat Empire

EMPIRE — Not that long ago Velma-Alma was staring at a 1-3 record and wondering what it would do without starting quarterback Ty Richardson.

Now, the Comets are preparing to host a playoff game. That’s the difference made by four weeks and a physical victory over Empire.

Dallen Mercer gained 210 yards and scored two touchdowns, and the V-A defense nearly pitched a shutout Friday, as the Comets beat Empire, 20-7, here at Ric Johnson Memorial Field.

The Comets’ win, coupled with a Rush Springs victory over Healdton on Friday, allowed V-A to secure second place in District A-4. First and second place teams in each district are awarded home opening round playoff games. Velma-Alma is 6-3 overall and 5-1 in A-4.

Empire, which could have earned its first home playoff date since the early 1990s with a win here Friday, will finish third in the district and travel to an opening round destination. The Bulldogs are 6-3 overall and 4-2 in the district.

Empire will close its regular season campaign next Friday with a trip to Bray-Doyle. Velma-Alma will play host to Healdton in its season finale on the same night.

From the outset Friday, the Comets made no bones about their physical strategy. They wanted to run the ball up the middle -- and they did.

Freshman quarterback Andrew McGuire, who stepped under center after Richardson was lost for the season a month ago, distributed the ball to running backs 44 times and watched them gain 266 yards. That’s an average of more than  six yards per carry.

“Our line played good,” Mercer said. “They had a lot of heart. They know we can’t do anything without them. No battle is won outside the trenches, so our lineman put that in their minds and did what they had to do.

“After watching film, we realized (Empire) hadn’t had a physical game yet. So, we decided to come out and be more physical than them.”

Empire coach Tony Roberts wasn’t happy with his club’s approach to the game nor its execution.

The Bulldogs allowed Mercer to run the opening kickoff 48 yards to the Empire side of the field.

Still, it looked as if Empire might force a three-and-out when V-A faced third-and-one two plays later. But Checotah Lynn’s 2-yard gain gave the Comets a fresh set of downs, and Mercer followed with runs of 27 and 8 yards. The 8-yard dash landed him in the end zone.

It was less than two minutes into the game, and Velma-Alma led 8-0.

“You play like you practice, and that’s how we practiced this week,” Roberts said. “We got out-played and out-coached. We haven’t learned what it takes to get to the next level, and until we do, we’ll be a third or fourth place team. It’s not just the kids. It’s the coaches and everyone.”

Empire started to answer with a drive of its own. The Bulldogs moved from their own 37 to the V-A 21 and neared the red-zone with a first down.

But a shotgun snap from center sailed over quarterback Tanner Shorter’s head and the senior was tackled for a 10-yard loss. Two plays later, Shorter’s pass on fourth-and-21 feel incomplete.

The Comets capitalized on Empire’s misfire. They marched 68 yards in 11 plays, and McGuire carried it into the end zone from one yard out. His pass for a two-point conversion fell incomplete, but V-A held a 14-0 halftime advantage.

Empire narrowed the gap on its first drive of the second half. The Bulldogs marched 83 yard on six plays, and the series was capped by a 17-yard scoring sprint by Shorter.

After that, however, Empire didn’t advance any farther than the V-A 40. A fumble ended that drive, and then a fumble to start Empire’s next series set up the Comets’ last score.

After setting up on the Empire 19, V-A ran six consecutive rushing plays, including five straight in which the ball went to Mercer. He eventually iced the game with a 2-yard plunge with 2:53 left.

Text Only
  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Expectations too high for a rehabbing Woods

    Tiger Woods finished near bottom last weekend at Royal Liverpool, drawing out his drought of major tournament wins. Despite the disappointing showing, Woods' return to form remains a matter of when, not if.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Stars align Big names featured at wrestling camp

    Kids were lining up for autographs from Oklahoma assistant wrestling coach Michael Lightner, after Marlow’s wrestling camp Tuesday.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Williams Demon softball starts preseason

    Last year, Duncan softball came close.
    This year, coach Robert Cowan has made it clear close will not be good enough.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Duncan well represented at Hoedebeck tournament

    The Duncan Golf and Tennis Club will host 60 players, 10 of which are in the Duncan Public School system, in its Hoedebeck Memorial Junior Tournament Wednesday through Thursday.

    July 23, 2014

  • Playoff hopes on Oklahoma’s mind at Big 12 media day

    High expectations are always chained to Oklahoma both internally and among its massive fan base.
    However, the Sooners enter the 2014 season as a consensus pick to reach the first College Football Playoff. For once, all expectations mesh.

    July 23, 2014

  • Former OSU line coach having impact at UT

    It was quite possibly the biggest coaching coup of the offseason and Oklahoma State was at the wrong end of it – former Cowboy offensive line coach Joe Wickline joining the staff for Charlie Strong's Texas Longhorns.

    July 23, 2014

  • In the middle of it Demons return from camp energized

    Duncan volleyball returned to practice with a spring in its step Monday, despite not being on their own gym floor.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Defensive showcase Comanche’s defense strengthens

    Everyone around the Indian program (even one Outlaw) points out how far the softball team has come, but nothing is more evident then the improvement on defense.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rory McIlroy wins British Open for 3rd major

    Walking off the 18th green as the British Open champion, Rory McIlroy kept gazing at all the greats on golf's oldest trophy.

    On the claret jug, his name is etched in silver below Phil Mickelson.

    In the record book, he is listed behind Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods as the youngest to get three legs of the career Grand Slam.

    And over four days at Royal Liverpool, he had no equal.

    July 20, 2014

  • Watkins wins Watkins shines in Duncan tennis tournament

    Freshman Addie Watkins didn’t let playing older opponents deter her from winning the 16-year-old girls division at the Duncan First Bank Jr. Challenger Tournament Friday.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Ariz. Inmate Dies 2 Hours After Execution Began Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Raw: Funeral for Man Who Died in NYPD Custody Migrants Back in Honduras After US Deports Israeli American Reservist Torn Over Return Raw: ISS Cargo Ship Launches in Kazakhstan Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme Former NTSB Official: FAA Ban 'prudent' EPA Gets Hip With Kardashian Tweet Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in the Netherlands Biden Decries Voting Restrictions in NAACP Talk Broncos Owner Steps Down Due to Alzheimer's US, UN Push Shuttle Diplomacy in Mideast Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Dozens Feared Dead Republicans Hold a Hearing on IRS Lost Emails Raw: Mourners Gather As MH17 Bodies Transported Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-free Travel Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament

Should the date for The World's Largest Garage Sale be changed from the third weekend in July to sometime in October to take advantage of cooler weather like we had this past weekend?

No. It's better in the summer cause kids are out of school.
Yes. More shoppers would come during nice fall weather.
Either time is fine.

     View Results