Davis not looking ahead in matchup with Adair
Even before the final whistle of Davis' comeback against Millwood, some of the Wolves' faithful talked about a walk-in-the-park in the next round.
But the Davis coaches and the players on the field take nothing for granted. Following a smashing 42-28 victory against a team that's had their number for years, the Wolves are the personification of the coaching cliché "one week at a time."
There's no looking ahead, no game planning for Hennessey or Vian. For unbeaten Davis (12-0) it's tunnel vision – strictly on Adair (12-0) in the Class 2A quarterfinals tonight.
"The beauty of that kind of stuff is that no one outside of our office really knows the first thing about Adair," Davis coach Jody Weber said. "Like my dad used to say, 'there's no turkeys left after Thanksgiving.'
"We have a bunch of guys that just play, play, play. They just disregard the scoreboard. The scoreboard is really none of our business. We just go try to make sure every play is the best we can be."
If the Wolves don't look at the scoreboard, they can take solace in the tape. Davis played arguably its best second half of the season last week against Millwood, outgaining the Falcons 213-11 on the ground and asserting themselves along the front lines.
And to think it could have been worse. There were at least four instances in which apparent fumbles by Millwood were called dead balls, including what would have been a scoop-and-score for Jordan Wilson in the fourth quarter.
Weber said the Wolves have been forcing those turnovers all year. Maybe they'll fall in Davis' favor tonight, more than three hours away from Wolf Field.
"I know those games are tough to call, with two quality teams and everybody's excited about it," Weber said of not getting all of the calls last week. "We were just blessed."
The blessings seem to keep coming for Davis, in particular in the running back by committee offense the Wolves continue to force upon their opponents. After a so-so to its standards first half running the ball against Millwood, Davis was able to lean heavily on Deaundre Carr and Braden Ruth in the turnaround.
Ruth was close to unstoppable, rushing for 175 yards and two scores, including a 61-yard touchdown in which he dragged a Millwood defender into the end zone over the final 10 yards. Carr grounded out all of his 68 yards rushing in the second half on a balky ankle.
Weber said he didn't anticipate using the duo the way he did in the second round victory.
"Using Braden as much as that was something we never anticipated doing because he's so important to our defense at his size," Weber said. "That doesn't lend itself to playing in a game that's this physical. Every down was contested, every down meant something."
While Davis was rolling into the quarterfinals, Adair, the District 2A-7 champion, had to edge out a 36-35 win over Okemah last week after going ahead by three scores early. In the win, quarterback Brady Bradbery had 318 total yards of offense and four touchdowns, helping the Warriors to their closest win of the season.
Like its opponent tonight, Davis hasn't had many close games all season. Weber isn't expecting tonight's game to be another blowout, but said that his team is prepared after a Thanksgiving morning practice he called "top-notch."
The winner faces either two-time defending state champion Hennessey or 2A No. 1 Vian in the semifinal round. But, again, no looking ahead.
"They're about as multiple as we've seen on offense," Weber said of Adair. "Their no-huddle is really fast, they change tempos. They're a big challenge on that side of the ball.
"They're so far away, you don't know much about them, but then you see them and understand why they've only lost one game in the last two years."
Erik K. Horne