For all the things the No. 3 Ardmore Tigers did right on Friday, the top-ranked Carl Albert Titans did just a little bit more.

For all the things the No. 3 Ardmore Tigers did right on Friday, the top-ranked Carl Albert Titans did just a little bit more.

In a matchup of two top-five teams in Class 5A, it was the Titans managing to leave Noble Stadium with a 28-12 victory over the Tigers.

CAHS gave Ardmore a healthy dose of junior running back Dadrian Taylor all night, as the kid nicknamed “Rabbit” proved he was more than a handful to deal with. Taylor torched the Tigers for three touchdowns on the evening to the tune of 27 carries for 312 yards.

While Ardmore coach Josh Newby wasn’t thrilled with losing to the Titans at home, the third year head coach admitted there is a lot his team can learn from this, as well as the vision for the season being 20/20 following the defeat.

“Carl Albert is a well-coached team with some great athletes,” he said. “They’ve got an amazing offensive line with a great running game to go with it. We’ve got to get better from this game and improve.”

“For us, were not worried about week three, it’s about week 11 for us in our district,” Newby added. “There’s not one kid hanging their head after this loss. We’re going to get better from this game.”

While the Tigers managed to win the turnover battle with the Titans 2-1, it was the only takeaway by Carl Albert which proved to be the biggest momentum shift in the game.

With Ardmore driving down the field on its first drive of the game, the Tigers were in prime position to strike first and take a lead against the defending champions.

But, in an instant the momentum was pushed in the other direction.

On a 1st and goal from the seven yard line, Ardmore pushed towards the goal line and appeared to have broken the plain for a touchdown. 

However, just seconds before the score could be confirmed, Carl Albert managed to strip the ball away and recover the ball in the end zone for a touchback.

Just four plays later, the Titans cashed in.

Taylor rumbled his way 60-yards for a touchdown, putting CAHS up 7-0 with 8:40 left in the first quarter.

After each team traded three and outs, the Titans began the second quarter with another score. 

This time it was freshman quarterback Ben Harris finding Jaedon Pool in the corner of the end zone for a 13 yard touchdown, making it 14-0 Titans.

It took the Tigers a few minutes, but they managed to put together a long and substantial drive on their next possession.

AHS eventually broke through the Titans defense, with Eean Ross punching the ball in from five yards out, bringing the Tigers to within eight at 14-6 following the missed extra point.

Two big moments kept the Tigers from entering the halftime break with a huge shot in the arm momentum wise.

First, CAHS got another touchdown, courtesy of Taylor from six yards out making it 21-6 with 1:42 remaining in the first half.

Then, just as the halftime horn sounded, Chantz Scurry broke loose from the Tigers’ 35-yard line and dashed his way downfield. 

Scurry was denied a touchdown just mere inches away from the goal line however, and Ardmore faced a 15-point deficit at the break.

Just when it looked like the Tigers were back in the game though, Carl Albert’s defense stood tall.

AHS began the second half with an interception courtesy of Jakwan Anderson, but seven plays later the Tigers were forced to punt the ball away.

Unfortunately, the Titans needed just eight plays for Taylor to find the end zone for the third time in the game, as he rumbled his way in from 15-yards out to make it a 28-6 game with 4:13 left in the third quarter.

With the start of the fourth came one last push from the Tigers offense and defense.

Scurry managed to cap off a seven play drive with a one-yard touchdown, making it a 28-12 game after the failed two-point conversion.

Ardmore then got another turnover when the Tigers pounced on a fumble, but as the case had been all game long, the Titans defense prevented them from cashing in.

There was plenty of reason to be optimistic as sophomore Creed Cox got to see significant playing time in the second half of the game with Tero Roberts playing the majority of the first half. 

Coach Newby said he had complete faith in Cox entering the game, and that he has the full backing of everyone of his teammates and coaches.

“We’ve got the next man up mentality around here,” he said. “We love Creed. He’s one of the toughest kids in this school, and we’re going to rally around him when necessary. Creed is one of the best people on this team to be around and we support him fully.”

“This group (Carl Albert) beat us last year, and we got better from this game,” Newby added. “We’re going to use this game as motivation for El Reno, for Southeast, for Altus and the rest of the season.”

Scurry finished the game with 84 yards rushing, while Ross totaled 34 yards on the ground.

Ardmore (2-1) will be back at Noble Stadium Friday night for Homecoming against the El Reno Indians beginning at 7:30 p.m.

The game will also mark the opening contest of district play.