This time the Stratford Bulldogs got things clicking early.
After struggling in the first half and playing well in the second several times this season, Stratford rolled to a 43-14 halftime advantage and beat Marietta, 49-21, to celebrate Homecoming Friday night.
The Bulldogs generated 535 yards of offense, including 438 on the ground, and had two 100-plus-yard rushers.
On just 17 carries, Kyle Qualls ran for a whopping 267 yards and scored five touchdowns, while Montie Thomas added 106 yards on only 11 attempts and scored once off a 51-yard run.
“I was proud of our hustle and execution. We came out and played well,” said Stratford head coach Michael Blackburn.
Qualls had TD runs of 1, 75, 6, 71 and 40 yards for the Bulldogs, who improved to 4-1 on the season in their final non-district game.
Quarterback Chase Bradstreet attempted just six passes and completed three, all to Kyler Wade for 97 yards and a touchdown of 65 yards.
Defensively, Stratford had a solid defensive night, holding Marietta to 251 total yards and forcing three turnovers. One of Marietta’s scores came off an 80-yard kickoff return by Adam Sanchez.
Jacob Compton topped the Bulldogs with eight tackles, while Kyle Wright and Kyle Potter totaled five apiece. Potter also recorded a sack and fumble recovery.
Eli Savage had the other fumble recovery, and Matthew Blackburn recorded an interception.
Qualls’ 1-yard scoring run and Bradstreet’s 65-yard scoring connection to Wade lifted Stratford to an early 14-0 advantage. Marietta clipped the advantage in half after a 68-yard run by Cash Lang.
The Bulldogs then scored three touchdowns in the second quarter off runs of 75, 6 and 71 yards by Qualls. Matthew Blackburn’s interception set the stage for Qualls’ 71-yard score.
The 80-yard return by Sanchez on the ensuing kickoff pulled Marietta (2-3) within 43-14 at the break.
Stratford then closed out its scoring early in the third quarter on Thomas’ 51-yard run with 10:01 to go.
Dillon Cox had an 8-yard TD run for Marietta with 10 seconds remaining in the contest.
The Bulldogs return to district play next Friday at Wayne.
Plainview 49, Sulphur 7
SULPHUR – Austin Carrera ran for 169 yards on 22 carries and scored five touchdowns as Plainview coasted to a 49-7 victory over Sulphur Friday night.
Carerra had scoring runs of 11, 5, 4, 3 and 12 yards as Plainview had 355 yards on the ground and 41 more through the air.
Sulphur didn’t get on the board until the 2:01 mark of the fourth quarter, when Nate Johnson scored off a 10-yard run to break up Plainview’s shutout bid. Maricio Uribe kicked the extra point.
Johnson finished with 77 yards on 17 carries, but the Bulldogs managed just 15 yards on the ground from everyone else on the squad. Sulphur was limited to 129 yards of total offense.
Plainview’s other two touchdowns came off a 20-yard pass from Taber Jordan to Nate Hoben and a 12-yard run by Jordan.
Jordan was 3-of-7 passing for 41 yards for Plainview, and Sulphur’s Ryan Rackley was 3-of-7 for 37 yards and one interception.
Defensively for the Bulldogs, Chance Graves had a fumble recovery.
Kobe Brewster picked off a pass for Plainview, and teammate Carter Bowker had a fumble recovery.
Sulphur is at home with Atoka next Friday night.