Special to The Sun
Head coach Derek Turner and his Oklahoma Christian School Saints came in to their first-round playoff matchup against Tonkawa High School looking to make a statement. The class 2A-2 division champs did that and then some, plundering the Buccaneers 40-7 in front of a capacity crowd at OCS.
“Our kids are really working hard,” Turner said. “We’ve seen Tonkawa this year. They have a great tradition, those guys. Coach Kirtley, he’s had five state championships and two runner-ups, so that is a tremendous history that they have, we’re honored to have played them, but our kids were really ready for this.”
The Saints (10-1) drew first blood as sophomore Luke Frankfurt scrambled in to the end zone up the middle on a 71-yard drive, with junior Will McKinnis completing the two-point attempt pass to senior Garrett Kilborn to put OCS up 8-0. A 6-yard touchdown reception from senior Austin Brooks to senior Blake Barnes put the Saints up over the Bucs (5-5) 16-0 by the end of the first quarter.
Brooks and company picked up where they left off in the second, throwing a 37-yard strike to sophomore Connor Sikes to put OCS up 23-0. Brooks tossed another 15-yard pass to junior Cameron James on the Saints’ next possession, allowing the Saints to close out the half over the Buccaneers with a commanding 30-0 lead.
Brooks added another touchdown throw in the third, connecting with Frankfurt on a 21-yard lob to put the Saints ahead 37-0. Senior Nathan Blakely added a 24-yard field goal to round out the score for OCS. Tonkawa broke the shutout in the final minutes thanks only to a rushing score by Bucs halfback Reece Simpson.
Brooks finished the night connecting on 19 of 25 passes for 320 yards and four touchdowns. Frankfurt led the Saints rushing game, gaining 79 yards on 17 attempts with one touchdown. For Tonkawa, quarterback Trent Ellis went only 5 of 14 for 54 yards and two interceptions. Ellis also led the Buccaneers rushers with 42 yards on 16 touches. Garrett and Kilborn both snagged interceptions for OCS.
Five-time Grammy award-winning gospel singer Sandi Patty, whose son plays for the Saints, sang the national anthem prior to the start of the game.
OCS will go on to host Lindsay in the second round of the state 2-A playoffs, after the Leopards defeated the Lexington Bulldogs Friday night.
For Turner and the Saints, it will be a chance for revenge. Lindsey was responsible for ejecting OCS from the state playoffs last year on a 47-21 thrashing in the second round.
“Coach Ferguson and (the coaches) up there have a great tradition,” Turner said. “It’ll be fun. They beat us pretty good last year, so it’ll be fun to get back and play them again.”