Guthrie dominates Ponca City with 40-0 win to open up season

Football seniors come onto Jelsma Stadium for the coin toss against Ponca City. Photo courtesy of Kaia Calvert - Kaiacaptures

The Friday night lights at Jelsma Stadium illuminated a resounding victory as the Guthrie Bluejays squared off against Ponca City for the 2023 season opener. Guthrie outplayed Ponca City in every aspect, securing an impressive 40-0 win.

A season ago, the Guthrie defense held five opponents without a score, and after four quarters this year’s team is capable of doing the same. Ponca City managed a total of seven yards, including negative 11 yards rushing on 31 rushes.

70 percent of the Ponca City drives were held to three offensive plays and ended with a punt. Meanwhile, Guthrie was never forced into a punt.

The Wildcats had 10 offensive drives with nine resulting in punts. The only Ponca possession that did not make a punt was the drive that was stopped at the end of the second quarter. Ponca City was forced into seven three-and-out drives.

Guthrie’s success wasn’t limited to only the defense. The offense piled up 374 yards and saw multiple Bluejays have stellar performances.

Senior quarter Hayden Calvert did not have to sling the right arm too often but when he did, he was accurate by completing six of seven passing for 113 yards. He averaged over seven yards per carry to finish with 65 rushing yards.

Calvert is now 21-5 as the Jays starting quarterback.

Highlighting the running game was senior Jaylen Harper, who finished with 115 yards on 17 carries, including only three rushes in the second half. The playmaker scored the first three scores of the game with runs of 40, one, and eight yards.

Junior half-back Blake Doles, who was an offensive lineman a season ago, finished with 138 total yards with 31 rushing yards on four carries and hauled in five catches for 107 receiving yards. He finished the night with a 13-yard touchdown run.

Sophomore running back Zane Thomas rushed for 63 yards on 10 carries and finished with two touchdowns.

After a scoreless first quarter, Guthrie led 20-0 at halftime with the three Harper scores. Thomas’ two scores came in the third quarter and Doles’ score came in the fourth quarter.

The offensive line dominated the entire evening to aid the offense in 261 rushing yards and protecting the quarterback.

Guthrie, who has won eight of their last 10 season openers and six straight, has now won 10 of the 12 meetings with the 6A-II Wildcats. The series dates back to 2010.

The Bluejays will be on the road Friday evening as they travel to Woodward for a 7 p.m. kickoff.


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