By Chuck Reherman, Sports Editor – You could call it “the perfect storm.”
Yukon went into Friday’s district opener riding a high of two straight wins. Broken Arrow was brewing like a pair of large storms of having had two weeks to prepare for the Millers and coming into the game looking for its first.
Those two things converged on each other and the Millers got caught right in the middle.
The No. 4 ranked Tigers stormed into Yukon, scoring four times in the first quarter and snapped the Millers’ win streak, 56-20, Friday night at Miller Stadium.
The Tigers, who had lost to three nationally ranked teams in its first three outings, scored on its first four possessions and never really led the Millers in the contest. Broken Arrow led 35-6 at the intermission, then scored the first 21 points of the second half to lead 56-6 at one point.
“Broken Arrow might be the best team we will see the rest of the season until playoffs,” Miller head coach Jeremy Reed said. “They dominated us in all positions. I am not saying that to be negative on our team, but let’s be real honest, they were better on just about every spot on the field.
“When you are better and when you are more physical, and I was worried about that all week,” he said. “Everything held true to what I thought might happen, I was hoping we would match it a little different.
“The first quarter killed us. The second quarter, it’s a 7-6 ball game and we have to learn to get over some things psychologically. We had some big plays, it seemed like we were in between the 20s and couldn’t get it into the end zone when it mattered early in the game.”
The first quarter did put the Millers in the whole and YHS helped, but turning the ball over and struggling on offense.
The Millers did move the ball on offense and drove from their own 14 to the 41, but turned the ball over on a fumble.
The Tigers scored three plays later on a 14-yard Noah Cortes touchdown run.
After a YHS punt, Broken Arrow quarterback Lafayette Wright connected with Keishun Johnson on a 67-yard touchdown pass with 7:14 left in the quarter.
Another Miller punt led to a one-yard scoring run by Kejuan Tolbert and a 21-0 lead with 4:46 left.
The Tigers opened a 28-0 lead when Wright connected with Matt Kaiser on a 76-yard touchdown pass.
“You can’t give a team like Broken Arrow that many chances,” Reed said. “They are a great team and are going to have a great year, and it was a good measuring stick for. We know some things that are exposed on us and now it is our job to get that fixed and the players job to fix them the best they can.
“We did some good things,” he said. “The consistent part hurt us, first down hurt us, I felt we were off schedule on first downs. And, when we had a big play, we would get a penalty. We just couldn’t string a drive together early in the game.”
The Millers did get on the board late in the first half on a 73-yard Parker Kenley touchdown run. Kenley finished the game with 140 yards on six carries.
Yukon added a touchdown with 6:55 left in the game on a two-yard Perry Olsen run. The score capped an eight-play, 80-yard drive. Landon Donohoo had three runs for 40 yards in the drive and Olsen had a 12-yard run.
Donoho scored his first varsity touchdown with 13 seconds remaining on an 11-yard run. He finished the game with six carries for 56 yards.
“We have to regroup from a mental standpoint,” Reed said. “Physical is one thing, but mental is a whole different thing. We have to get past the lopsided loss, not let doubt creep in and know that we are still the team that upset Norman North two weeks ago. Nothing has changed.”
The Millers will play their third of four straight home games this coming Friday, hosting Sand Spring in a 7 p.m. kickoff.