Junior Wide Receiver Cadyn Karl had 8 catches for 138 yards and the game winning score as the Jones Longhorns (7-2) defeated the Guthrie Bluejays (5-2) of Class 5A 32-26 on Friday evening.
Don’t feel bad if you woke up Friday morning thinking that Jones was hosting Meeker. On Friday November 6, Jones Head Coach Dave Martin received a call letting him know Meeker was not going to be able to play due to COVID restrictions. That is when things got interesting. “I found out at 9:30 this morning, I called (Guthrie Coach Kelly Beeby) at 10:30, and he said they’d come over and play.” Guthrie was supposed to play Western Heights on Friday night, but the Jets were in COVID procedures as well. Thus a script was written in such a way that only 2020 could produce. The Bluejays from Guthrie of Class 5A would venture south out of Logan County to take on the Jones Longhorns of Class 2A on the first Friday of November.
“We told the kids to go out and play hard.”
Martin’s Longhorns did not disappoint.
The Longhorns received the opening kick but were forced to punt six plays later. The punt hit a Bluejay player in the back and was quickly recovered by the Longhorns. Three plays later Junior Quarterback Carson May connected with Junior Emmett Murphy for a 30 yard score. Guthrie was able to counter with a 4 play 60 yard drive. Jones scored again late in the 1st Quarter when May stretched across the goal line on a 4th and 1 from the Bluejay 3 yard line.
The Longhorns appeared to have control of the game when Senior Wide Receiver Elijah Reed rushed for a 2 yard Touchdown early in the 2nd Quarter. Guthrie would score Touchdowns on each of the last three drives of the 2nd Quarter to take a 26-20 lead into the locker room. Guthrie did most of their damage on the ground, with running back Isaiah Hammons rushing the ball 23 times for 118 yards and a touchdown and Quarterback Josh Rains rushing the ball 19 times for 92 yards and two touchdowns.
Guthrie received the 3rd quarter kickoff and drove the ball deep into Longhorn territory. But the drive stalled on a 4th and 7 from the Jones 24 yard line. The Longhorns then embarked on a 12 play, 76 yard drive capped off by a 8 yard rush by Carson May to tie the game 26-26. This opening sequence of the 3rd quarter set the tone for the rest of the game. Solid play by the Longhorn defense followed by long, sustained drives by the Jones offense.
The rest of the 3rd quarter and the first 10 minutes of the 4th quarter were fairly uneventful, with both teams finding success moving the ball, but not being able to punch the ball in the endzone. This set up the dramatic finish over the last two minutes of the game.
After a Longhorn punt, the Bluejays had the ball at their own 35 yard line with 2:02 left on the clock. On the very first play of the drive, Guthrie Quarterback Josh Rains rolled out right and threw a pass that was tipped and Cadyn Karl dove to pluck the ball out of the air before it touched the ground to give the Longhorns the ball at the Guthrie 47 yard line. Six plays later, May connected with Karl for a 36 yard go ahead touchdown.
When Karl was asked what was going through is head while the ball was in the air, he simply replied, ” I was worried. Those are scary to catch, over the shoulder. Carson’s crazy, but he throws a great ball.”
The Bluejays took a few shots at the endzone but were not able to connect and the Longhorns walked away with the victory.
With the final game of the regular season now in the books, Coach Martin and the Longhorns to the playoffs. The experience gained in this game should pay dividends in the weeks to come.
“We couldn’t just sit around another week, we had to go out there and experience it. We’ve seen the potential of this team, and we just proved to our team we have the potential to go out there and beat a competitive team.”
The Longhorns will host a playoff game on Friday November 13, 2020. The opponent will be known when the 2A Playoff Bracket is released on Sunday November 8, 2020.