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KHS playoff spot secured

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Jackets hammer MSM on Senior Night to guarantee postseason appearance

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    KINGFISHER JUNIOR Jarret Birdwell prepares to stiff-arm a Mount St. Mary defender during his 47-yard catch and run for a touchdown during the first quarter of Kingfisher’s 61-0 victory over the Rockets. [Photo by Russell Stitt/www.stitt.smugmug.com]

Kingfisher pushed its run to two full decades of consecutive playoff appearances with its most recent win.

Cade Stephenson accounted for six touchdowns and Mount St. Mary provided almost no resistance as KHS rattled off a 61-0 victory in front of a Senior Night crowd.

“It was a game we knew we should dominate,” admitted KHS head coach Jeff Myers. “Mount St. Mary is struggling right now, but we still had to go out and actually take care of business.

“I was glad to see we did that in all aspects.”

The win snapped a two-game losing skid for the Jackets as they moved to 5-4 overall and 4-2 in District 3A-1.

It locked up a playoff spot for the 20th straight year. KHS last failed to make the playoffs in 1999.

“It seems to be a foregone conclusion that we’re going to make the playoffs here and I’m glad we have that tradition and those expectations,” Myers said. “But it’s not always easy to do. Making the playoffs is still something you should be proud of because half the teams aren’t able to do it.”

The Jackets had enough points to win less than three minutes into the game.

After forcing a Rocket three-and-out KHS needed 1:23 to drive 42 yards as it got a 22-yard screen pass from Stephenson to Caleb Dick.

That was the start of a 28-point first quarter, which was followed up by a 26-point second frame.

On Kingfi sher’s second drive, Stephenson hit Jarret Birdwell on a crossing pattern and the lengthy wideout ran through Rocket defenders for a 47-yard touchdown at the 7:55 mark.

Just 80 seconds later, Stephenson made it 21-0 by returning an interception 55 yards for a TD.

Kingfisher had more points less than halfway through the fi rst quarter than it scored the previous two games in losses to Heritage Hall and Perkins-Try-on (16 combined).

Stephenson still wasn’t done.

He followed up his pick-six with TD runs of 28 and 3 yards.

He later threw a 20-yard touchdown to Keaton Abercrombie.

Senior Kyle Fahlenkamp punched in a pair of short TD runs as KHS led 54-0 at halftime.

“We made a couple of mistakes, but we didn’t let Mount St. Mary capitalize on them, which was important,” Myers said. “And we limited the mistakes, too.”

While Kingfisher’s offense moved the ball at will, the defense wasted little time in getting it back.

The Jackets forced six turnovers, most of which came in the fi rst half.

Clayton Abercrombie had an interception on the Rockets’ second drive of the game and added another later in the half.

Slade Snodgrass, Luie Torres and Hayden Stafford all recovered a fumble.

Mount St. Mary managed just 128 total yards with a large chunk of that coming in the second half.

As Kingfi sher emptied its bench well before halftime, it had 22 players record at least one tackle.

Alan Munoz led them all with fi ve tackles.

Stephenson had 108 passing yards. Three of his four completions went for scores.

Freshman Jax Sternberg-er led a balanced rushing attack. From his quarterback position, he managed 56 yards on six carries, including a 6-yard score in the fourth quarter.

Fahlenkamp had 46 yards on 10 carries while Torres picked up 32 on six attempts.

“It was good to send the seniors out with a win on possibly their last game at home,” Myers said. “And it was good to get everyone some game snaps.

“But it obviously gets much tougher this week.”

The Jackets play No. 7 John Marshall at 7 p.m. Thursday in Oklahoma City’s Taft Stadium.

The game was originally scheduled for Friday night, but was moved up a day to accommodate other OKC Public Schools.

The game will decide who finishes third and fourth in the district.

The Bears are 7-2 overall and, like KHS, 4-2 in the district.

Their losses are 50-14 to Heritage Hall in Week 5 and 14-6 at Perkins last week.

John Marshall has surrendered just 98 points all season and has held foes to single digits six times.

However, its seven wins are against teams with a combined 10-53 record. Mannford’s 3-6 mark is the best of the bunch.

“They’re good. They’ve got good playmakers who can score at any time and they get after you on defense,” Myers said. “They held Perkins to 14 points and nobody’s done that this season.

“But we feel our schedule has prepared us for this. We’ve faced multiple good teams, so we’re going to go in there expecting to win and hopefully kickstart another really good playoff run.”