ARDMORE – Fourth-ranked Ardmore threw two passes Friday night. One was intercepted and another was incomplete.
Photo by Holly Cowden
Jacob Storts recovers an Ardmore fumble in the second half Friday night.
It was what the Tigers did the rest of the time that made the difference. Ardmore’s option attack totaled 397 yards on 44 carries and Jordan Roberts, the star of night, scored three touchdowns in a 35-0 first-round playoff win over Piedmont at Noble Stadium.
Ardmore (9-2, 6-1) advances to play at top-seeded Tulsa Bishop Kelley Friday while Piedmont’s season comes to an end at 6-5 overall.
“They’re very methodical and disciplined and they execute extremely well,” Piedmont head coach Drew Gossen said of the Tigers’ keys to victory. “We knew trying to defend this offense was going to be a challenge and it was.”
Roberts, who flashed brilliant speed on each of his big plays, gathered in an option pitch and sprinted 52 yards untouched for Ardmore’s first touchdown of the game. He added a 21-yard touchdown run in the second quarter and a 34-yard interception return for a score to put the game on ice in the fourth quarter.
It’s what Ardmore head coach Josh Newby has gotten accustomed to from the 6-foot-1, 171-pound senior. Roberts credited his coaches for putting him in the right spots to make the big plays Friday night.
“Coach had great play-calling and put me in best position to get into the end zone,” Roberts said. “I just made the right cuts and made the right moves that I needed to.”
It wasn’t just Roberts, though. Chantz Scurry capped off a 29-yard scoring drive from Ardmore with a 2-yard plunge up the middle to give the Tigers a 21-0 lead with 0:21 left in the third quarter. Scurry carried 18 times for 160 yards and two scores to compliment Roberts’ six carries for 82 yards. Kobe Pickens had nine carries for 97 yards.
“It’s not one, it’s three or four guys who rack up the yards,” Gossen said. “You have to defend all of them on every single play and that makes it tough.”
Highlights were few and far between for Piedmont, which gained only one yard in the second half. Tanner Knight picked off an Anthony Kimmons pass at the Piedmont 12-yard line to snuff out a Tiger scoring opportunity late in the first half, and Jacob Storts returned a Tiger fumble 21 yards late in the fourth quarter.
Still, Piedmont had a potentially program-building season that ended with consecutive losses to Top 5 teams, but was otherwise stellar.
“The teams in the future at Piedmont have a lot to look up to,” Gossen said. “These guys set a standard that’s very high and you can’t ask for more than that.”