CUSHING – The district race tightened Saturday afternoon as Cushing celebrated its third-straight victory to remain undefeated in 4A-2. By a score of 54-35, the Tigers improved to 3-3 overall and 3-0 in district as they defeated the McLoud Redskins.
Will Moyer was again named the Red Dirt Sports Xtra MVP as he completed 19 of 29 pass attempts for 319 yards and four touchdowns. The Tigers produced 509 yards of offense to McLoud’s 289.
The game was scheduled for Friday evening in McLoud but moved Saturday to Cushing after the tragic shooting death of a McLoud teenager.
For the third week in a row, Cushing posted 27 first-half points and put itself in position to control the remaining 24 minutes of the game.
“All that matters is those district games, and right now we’ve won three in a row,” coach Rusty Morgan told RDMGtv’s James Coffelt. “We’ll just keep on coming. There’s a lot of areas we need to get better at, and the promising thing is these guys know it.”
Early points came on a pair of touchdown passes to Keaton Crooks (six catches, 84 yards), a pick-6 by Crooks, and a rushing touchdown from Trevor Ailey. McLoud (2-4 overall, 1-2 district) mostly matched Cushing’s pace. The Redskins cut the lead to 27-21 at halftime after scoring on three crucial possessions. They recovered from Crooks’ interception return with a nine-play, 54-yard scoring drive and a quick, four-play touchdown drive on the ensuing possession. In those two series, Cushing’s defense gave up conversions on third down and fourth down to leave the door open for McLoud.
In the second half, McLoud started with the ball and began a methodical march toward tying the game. The Redskins rattled off 3 1/2 minutes before stalling out on fourth down to cap an eight-play drive. Cushing took over at its 32-yard line and Moyer, who was also named MVP after his performance in Perkins during Week 2, orchestrated one of the most important touchdowns of the afternoon. He was 5-for-5 for 71 yards on that drive, ending with a 9-yard pass to Harrison Wood that put the Tigers ahead 34-21 after Chance Kindley’s extra point.
In the coming weeks, Cushing will have a chance to prove its mettle. Three teams from District 4A-2 have cracked the Tulsa World’s top-10 statewide rankings, and Cushing has all three of them still on the schedule. First, No. 5 Bethany. Then No. 7 Blanchard comes to town on Oct. 26. And finally Tuttle, the second-ranked team in 4A, will host Cushing for the regular season finale. Tuttle is undefeated. Combined, the three teams have only two losses. Cushing, however, has the upper hand on Bethany and Blanchard with a clean 3-0 district record.