Pawhuska hunts for their 1st win

Chris Day |
Pawhuska running back Brian Jeffers (33) runs around end during Friday’s football game against Newkirk. The Huskies travel to Hennessey Thursday night. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. Chris Day/Journal-Capital

Pawhuska football continues to look for its first win this season. The Huskies suffered their third shutout this season in Friday’s 40-0 homecoming loss to Newkirk.

Pawhuska changes things up this week with a Thursday night game on the road in Hennessey (1-6, 1-2). Kickoff is 7 p.m. The Eagles picked up their first win of the season, with a 21-14 win over Perry.

Pawhuska coach Joe Tillman said the Huskies lost one of their largest linemen, Gunner Coppinger, after the Newkirk game. Coppinger’s family moved to Arkansas. Coppinger, a freshman, went 6-foot-1 and 265 pounds. The freshman-sophomore offensive line has struggled all season long. The loss of Coppinger will hurt as the Huskies continue to seek their identity on offense.

Pawhuska had just 73 yards on offense against Newkirk. The Huskies rushed for 54 yards and passed for another 19.

Friday night, Hennessey notched a 21-14 win over Perry on the legs of senior Dillon Joyce, who carried the ball 36 times for 193 yards. He scored a touchdown. Eagles quarterback Zane Hugaboom completed six of 16 passes for 110 yards. He passed for two touchdowns and had two interceptions.

Hennessey will be a tough test, Tillman said. They have a strong line on offense and defense.

Tillman said he was disappointed with the team’s play against Newkirk. The team had practiced well in preparation for the game, but didn’t carry their practice perfection onto the playing field. Homecoming festivities may have distracted Tillman’s young squad.

“I’m perplexed. I’m baffled,” Tillman said Monday night. “We will go back to work. We will go to Hennessey and be Pawhuska. We will show up, fight and compete.”

Newkirk 40,

Pawhuska 0

Newkirk took the opening kickoff and drove to the Pawhuska 1-yard line before the Huskies recovered a fumble and Brian Jeffers raced to an apparent touchdown. The touchdown run was called back because an illegal procedure call had stopped play prior to the snap.

Four plays later, Tigers quarterback Colby Case connected with receiver Daniel Romero on a 14-yard touchdown pass. Romero’s point-after touchdown kick failed. Newkirk led 6-0 with 7:56 gone in the first quarter.

Newkirk would score 34 more points and spoil Pawhuska’s homecoming with a 40-0 victory.

Case found running back Dominic Monhatwa for the Tigers second first-quarter score. The catch and run covered 62 yards. A 2-pint conversion pass failed. After 1 quarter, the score was 12-0.

Newkirk running back Laike Wilhelm rushed for the rest of the Tiger’s TDs. He scored on runs of 4, 3, 14 and 4 yards. Wilhelm was the game’s leading rusher with 147 yards on 18 carries. The Tigers finished with 235 yards rushing, 132 passing yards and 10 return yards for 377 yards of total offense. Case completed six of eight attempts for 119 yards and the two scores.

The fumble recovery for a touchdown was the only time the Huskies came close to Newkirk’s end zone. Pawhuska’s offense accounted for 54 rushing yards on 21 carries, and had two pass completions for 19 yards. The Huskies didn’t record a first down until the fourth quarter.

R.J. McCann was the Huskies leading rusher with 38 yards on three carries. McCann played quarterback in the fourth quarter. Jeffers carried the ball 16 times for 23 yards.

Prior to the game, Pawhuska High School held its homecoming coronation. PHS senior Blue Starr crowned Sidney Walker as homecoming queen.