|11/13/18 - |
COLLINSVILLE — It was anybody’s game at halftime of the Class 5A playoff battle between host and unbeaten Collinsville and the Ada Cougars Friday night at Sallee Field.
The Cardinals headed to halftime, clinging to a slim 13-7 lead.
Then an avalanche of mistakes and big plays by Collinsville rained down on the Cougars over the final two quarters.
The Cardinals outscored Ada 28-0 in the second half and pulled away for a 41-7 victory. No. 3 Collinsville improved to 11-0 on the year — it was their first undefeated regular season since 1979 — and will be back at home Friday night to host No. 6 Duncan in a second-round game.
Ada finishes up its season at 5-6.
“We played hard and had our shots,” said head coach Chris Berus.
Collinsville playmaker Braydon Burd returned a kickoff 81 yards for a touchdown to open the third quarter and the Cardinals turned three Ada second-half turnovers into scores.
“Giving up that opening kickoff return to start the second half kind of put a damper on things. After that, we were behind the 8-ball the whole second half,” Berus said.
Ada drove from its own 26 to the CHS 41 before Collinsville got a fumble recovery by Hayden Knight.
A 35-yard reception by Baylor Haynie set up a 7-yard TD run by Jake Tuttle and the Collinsville lead had quickly ballooned to 27-7. Tuttle rushed for 71 yards on 14 totes.
Things went from bad to worse when Gage Tackler recovered an Ada fumble on the ensuing kickoff. Malcomn Tillman capped that short drive with a 4-yard touchdown run and all of the sudden Ada found itself in a 34-7 hole.
The Cougars got past midfield on its next drive before Walker Roberts picked off Ada quarterback Tanner Gilliam and returned it 55 yards for another CHS score at the 7:37 mark of the fourth period.
Ada’s final drive went from its own 18 to the CHS 21 before it sputtered to a halt.
The game started with a bang as Kobe Burgess returned the opening kickoff 97 yards for an apparent touchdown that sent the small contingent of cold Ada fans into a frenzy and left the home crowd stunned. But a flag was thrown on the opposite side of the field away from the play and nullified the score.
Collinsville put together its best scoring drive of the night midway through the first quarter, marching 84 yards in 15 plays. Burd — who finished with 75 rushing yards on 11 carries, all in the first half — scored from the 1 and Collinsville led 7-0.
The Cardinals kicked off to Burgess again, and the Ada speedster again made them pay, returning it 94 yards for a touchdown. A Tovan Thomsen PAT kick tied the game at 7-7 at the 11:44 mark of the second quarter.
Collinsville used a 35-yard toss from quarterback Cole Dugger to receiver Cale Hutchins to set up another score for the hosts. Dugger’s two-yard TD toss to Peyton Russell capped the drive, but the Cougars blocked the PAT try by Seth Weiser to leave the score 13-7.
Ada started its final drive at the CHS 46 and got a 27-yard pass from Gilliam to Jake Shannon got the visitors to the CHS 27. However, back to back quarterback sacks by CHS defenders Tacker and Trent Brown totaling 14 yards short-circuited that Ada potential scoring drive just before halftime.
“It’s just like anything else in life — you’re going to experience some tough times ... but it’s the successes you have as a group that allows you to endure those times. This is tough right now, it always is at the end of a season, but it’s been a fun journey,” Berus said.
Gilliam finished with 75 rushing yards on 23 carries to pace Ada’s offensive efforts. He also completed 4-of-9 passes for 67 yards — including three to Shannon for 68 yards.
Dugger completed 5-of-8 passes for 92 yards for the Cardinals.
“I’m proud of my kids and my coaches. I’m so thankful for the effort that our program gives each and every day. I’m thankful for the love they’ve grown to have for one other and the relationships we’ve built through the course of our journey together,” Berus said.
“We’ve grown, we’ve learned lessons, we’ve laid foundations for the future,” he said. “I love my kids and I’m thankful for my seniors and their commitment.”