Joe Claxton Guest Writer
As the 2013 football season reaches its mid-point, the Ada Cougars are back on the road for the shortest yellow dawg and Red Carpet charter ride of the year.
There are numerous, perhaps hundreds, of routes to get from Ada to the Oklahoma City area. One of the roads less taken, perhaps, is the back door through Tecumseh, Ada’s opponent on Friday. It's some 45 miles north on 3W to south of Shawnee. Go west, young fan.
For Ada’s athletic supporters expecting an old-fashioned slugfest with the neighbors a year ago, it was anything but: Ada 56-15. Indeed, there had been many 15-rounders since the first meeting in 1927, which, in fact, was a 20-6 Tecumseh win.
The 54-0 knot that Oklahoma City Douglass put on the Savages last week and a 1-3 record would seem to predict another Ada win. The Cougars are 3-1 with three wins in a row, with a scoring differential of 141-90.
Tecumseh, on the other hand, has managed only 50 points in four games while giving up 153. One big reason is that quarterback Colton Owen is gone.
But kicker Jennifer Goethe is back. She is having a bit of trouble getting PAT or field goal tries, however. Goethe, who most likely set a record for FGs by a female at Norris Field last year (one), is remembered for coming out for football just two days before the opener with Noble and hitting the game-winning FG in OT.
Last year’s blowout ended a short stretch of parity, 2003-05. For another, the win ended a string of two straight victories for Tecumseh at Norris Field.
The lopsided win a year ago was what Adans had grown to expect, like the eight-game win streak through the ‘80s and ‘90s.
The series stands at 12 wins for Ada, five for Tecumseh, with the Ada edge coming during one of the most successful stretches ever for the Cougars.
The first meeting ever came in 1927, 15 years after Ada football started with a single game in 1912. It was only the second year after the team adopted the Cougar as mascot in 1926.
The series lapsed for over a half century before being resumed in 1984, when the schools were paired in district play. After a couple of competitive losses in ‘84, 7-0, and ‘85, 15-13, the roof caved in on the Savages. During the Ada run from 1988-93, Tecumseh’s six losses were by a combined 40.2-4.5 (forty-point-two to four-point-five) with no more than a TD touched by Tecumseh in any game.
After a nine-year hiatus, however, the Savages returned in 2002 and had gotten a bit uppity, splitting four meetings.
How cold was it?
A review of the series would not be complete without a mention that Tecumseh’s home field also has a claim to fame in the series: the coldest meeting ever for Ada.
It has to be the ninth game of the regular season at Tecumseh. Temps dipped to 20.2 degrees that night, Nov. 8, 1991, and not more than a few degrees warmer at game time.
Lead by Larry Bush, Greg Dean and Steve Malone, one of the top Cougar contingents ever took the field that night and immediately rolled up 516 yards rushing and 44 points to Tecumseh’s zip.
A recoup of comments:
As former Ada Evening News sports editor Mike Wingo recalled: “… The hosts might have preferred this game be canceled due to weather because they were met by a full-force storm in the form of the Cougars’ ground game.”
As former AHS band director extraordinaire Bronson Warren recalled: “Trumpets were freezing up. The single source of heat, the lights, were shut down at halftime when the Tecumseh band did a ‘lights out’ fire-twirling demonstration by the majorettes.”
As Mick "Voice of the Cougars" Cowan recalled: “Because of the performance, it was pitch black in the press box and the radio team of Cowan and Dean Painter could not see the stats to do the halftime rundown. Luckily, Painter was able to ‘Light Up’ as the AHS band’s famed number of the day was called and his cigarette lighter illuminated as well as offering at least imagined warmth.”