Ardmore football grinds out win over Duncan to improve to 6-0

Beau Bearden
The Daily Ardmoreite
Tigers junior CJ Williams pulls away from the Duncan defense. Williams rushed for two touchdowns Friday night as Ardmore beat Duncan 28-21 to improve to 6-0.

It’s no secret that the Ardmore High School football team has plenty of weapons on offense, with a strong likelihood that a different athlete can step up each week. That’s a big reason why the Tigers haven’t lost in 2021 and they proved it again Friday night during a 28-21 victory over Duncan at Noble Stadium.

“For us guys, it’s deeper than football. We’re a family,” said Ardmore junior CJ Williams. “At practice, we grind every day. This meat grinder (of a schedule) is approaching, so we’re chasing it.”

Williams made Duncan do the chasing though, as he broke free on a pair of touchdown runs in the third quarter that shifted momentum in the Tigers’ favor. 

“CJ runs hard, he sees the field really well and he cuts off of his linemen really well,” said Ardmore Josh Newby. “That’s why we’re playing him. He’s a great kid and he runs hard.”

The Tigers needed that spark as the first half was a defensive battle with neither team finding much success. That changed on the Tigers’ first drive as Williams needed just two carries to scamper into the end zone.

However, it wasn’t all Williams as the coaching staff tested Ardmore at halftime and it paid off.

“We just challenged our kids to play their individual technique, whatever position they’re play, they have to play it better,” Newby said. “We were just making some mistakes and it came down to technique. They accepted the challenge and in the second half, we cleaned it up a little bit. But that was a hard-fought win.”

The victory was also noteworthy as the Tigers improved to 6-0 for the first time since 2018, the same year it advanced to the Class 5A State Championship game. Only time will tell how far they go this year, but they’re fired up.

“It feels great,” Williams said of being 6-0.

It’s safe to say his teammates feel the same way as Ardmore is firing on all cylinders. The rushing game is also finding success, as six different athletes ran the ball.

Williams led the way with 10 carries for 129 yards and two touchdowns, while Antone Scallion added 67 yards and Ricky Smith finished with a 10-yard scoring scamper.

Meanwhile, Swanson went 6-of-10 for 78 yards and a touchdown to Jalen Reed.

Up next for the Tigers (6-0 overall, 3-0 District 5A-1) is a trip to Oklahoma City to battle Capitol Hill at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 14.

“Our kids know we have a fall-break game at Capitol Hill and then we have pretty much a meat grinder from there on,” Newby said. “El Reno, who’s beat us two years in a row. Then Noble, who’s playing amazing right now. Then you play the perennial powerhouse Lawton MacArthur. Our kids know it’s coming.”