SALLISAW – A quick start for the No. 2 ranked undefeated Poteau Pirates was enough to lead to a 28-13 victory Thursday night in Sallisaw.
The Pirates cashed in on their first two drives to establish a lead that they would never surrender.
Senior Jaxson Summers opened the scoring for Poteau with a 7-yard run over the right side to culminate a long Pirate drive with 5 :17 remaining in the first quarter. Pirate kicker Ethan Mcbee added the extra point to make it 7-0 Poteau.
After an unsuccessful Black Diamonds first possession, and a change of quarters, the Pirates cashed in on their second drive with a 27-yard touchdown run by sophomore Spencer Perry up the middle of the Sallisaw defense.
With the Diamonds still not able to get on the scoreboard Poteau put up another long drive to go up three scores when Dax Collins took it in from 19-yards out to put the Pirates up 21-0 with 4:30 remaining in the half.
With a little under two minutes left in the half, Black Diamonds quarterback Brock Streun was shaken up on a run from scrimmage and Jackson Harris, in for Streun, flipped the ball to Max Stump who tossed it Cole Mayfield all the way down to the 5 yard line.
Two plays later Streun got into the end zone on a “brotherly shove” from the 1-yard line. Brian Castor extra point attempt clanked off the left goal post and that left the score 21-6 at the half.
Sallisaw coach Brandon Tyler must have inspired his team at the half because they came out of the lockers looking like an entirely different team.
They shut down the opening Poteau drive and responded with a 68- yard drive of their own, but that effort would fall short when Mattox intercepted a Streun pass at the 1 yard line.
Sallisaw forced a three-and-out and took over at the Poteau 38 with just over 4 minutes left in the third.
Harris, again in for Streun, tossed it to Broque Oft who caught the ball at the 32 yard line and took it to the house for the second Sallisaw touchdown of the night.
A procedure penalty nullified a 2-point conversion, and the Black Diamonds were forced to settle for a Castor kick to make it 21-13 with 3:17 left in the third quarter.
The one score difference would not last long when Mattox broke loose for a 57-yard touchdown to put the Pirates back up by 15 points 28-13, and that’s where the scoring would end.
The Black Diamonds had 328 total yards of offense for the game, 186 passing and 142 on the ground. They will remain home next week to take on the Ft. Gibson Tigers (3-5, 2-3) and Poteau will return home to face the undefeated Ada Cougars (8-0, 5-0) in a game that will determine the 4A District 4 title.