SEQUOYAH – Thataway, Hattaway.
Sequoyah discovered a new battle cry and found out it had a wildcat in its fuel tank Friday night in a 21-7 Class 2A football victory over Haskell at the Pope Athletic Complex.
Junior running back Logan Hattaway galloped for 248 yards on 31 carries and scored all three touchdowns as the Eagles dominated the Haymakers in every way possible in the second half. Operating from the wildcat formation, where Hattaway took the snap directly from center, Sequoyah amassed 198 second half yards and limited Haskell to minus-12.
“We’ve been working on that set, and it paid off tonight. They wouldn’t know how to line up against it,’’ Eagles coach Rob Gilbreath said of the feline formation. “We didn’t want to show it in the first half because it would give them time to adjust.’’
The ploy really paid dividends starting the final quarter. With the game tied 7-all, the Eagles drove 62 yards in six plays with Hattaway covering the last 57 over and around the right side. In a game where both teams split 200 penalty yards, a personal foul against the Haymakers placed the ball at their own 6-yard line.
Displaying deceptive speed, Hattaway again dashed to his right and into the end zone with 10:32 remaining. With the conversion attempt failing, Sequoyah was forced into protecting a 13-7 lead.
“We were sloppy on both sides of the ball,’’ Gilbreath said. “We knew it would be tough to move the ball on them because they blitz so much. I was disappointed in our offense in the first half because we kept shooting ourselves in the foot. We’ve got a lot of young guys, and we’ve got to give them time. We have a lot of freshmen and sophomores.”
Only six seniors dot the Sequoyah roster with 42 of the 58 listed as freshmen or sophomores, but as the game wore on, it didn’t seem to matter that much.
The Eagles finished with 21 first downs and 371 total yards, running 72 plays, 22 more than Haskell. The Haymakers compiled just 139 yards and two first downs in the second half.
“Our defense played much better tonight (compared to the season-opening loss at Inola),’’ Gilbreath said. “They’re doing a better job in learning how to line up.’’
With Hattaway again spearing the wildcat, the Eagles scored the clinching TD on his 6-yard blast up the middle with 5:33 left. Hattaway also ran for the two conversion points to seal the deal.
On their first series of the game, the Eagles chewed up 95 yards in 15 plays to lead 7-0 on Hattaway’s 2-yard slant over right tackle. Briley Love’s 27-yard punt return to the Eagles’ 1 set up quarterback Brannon Westmoreland’s plunge for the tying touchdown 2:08 deep into the second half.
From then on, though, it was Hattaway time.