>> by Ray Fink
OBU Sports Information Director
GEORGETOWN, Texas—Oklahoma Baptist University (OBU) got a game full of firsts, including its first football victory since 1940 with a 42-21 win at Southwestern University, Sat., Oct. 12.
After an 0-5 start to the season, OBU head coach Chris Jensen said, “My concern was that the kids would lose heart. We have kids who aren’t used to that and a university that isn’t used to that, but they kept the faith and got it done. ”
The Bison used a two-quarterback system with Cale Grauer getting credit for 229 yards passing and two touchdowns. Darryl Fields ran for 151 yards, and Jordan Barnes rushed for 138 to give OBU its first 100-yard rushers of the season and first-known double 100 rushers.
OBU also got a 100-yard receiver with Nyko Symonds gathering six catches for 103 yards. Derek Serowski had 93 yards receiving on three catches. The Bison had 534 yards of total offense.
“We worked hard all week and we knew what we had to do,” Fields said. “Both our quarterbacks played well and the passing game opened things up for Jordan and me.”
OBU struck early with a 41-yard drive sparked by an opening kick return of 48 yards by Eugene Estes. After a 21-yard pass from Grauer to Serowski, Fields covered the final 20 yards, taking a handoff and scooting around end and heading down the left sideline for a touchdown with 14:12 left in the first quarter.
“We worked on that and when I saw how the defense was lined up, I knew where to go,” Fields said.
The Bison made it 14-0 with 11:59 left in the quarter on a 58-yard Grauer to Serowski touchdown pass.
Dante Smith countered with a pair of touchdown passes to tie the score 14-14 with 3:14 to go. Both capped drives aided by OBU penalties. The Bison had nine first-half penalties for 64 yards.
After taking a drive off, Grauer took the Bison on an 85-yard scoring drive, going 4-for-4, including a 52-yard scoring strike to Symonds with 1:54 left in the first quarter. Neither team scored in the second period, and the Bison led 21-14 at intermission.
OBU forced a punt to start the third quarter and marched 93 yards, including rushed of 16 yards by Grauer and an 18-yard scoring run by Fields for a 28-14 lead with 8:15 left in the quarter.
Southwestern pulled within a touchdown, 28-21, with 4:30 left in the third quarter, driving 91 yards. Smith threw his third touchdown strike of the game from five yards out to cap the drive.
OBU moved efficiently for the answer with Fields scoring from two yards out with :55 seconds left in the third quarter for a 35-21 lead, capping a 66-yard drive.
Barnes went over the 100-yard mark with a 53-yard touchdown run for a 42-21 lead, :39 seconds into the second half.
The Bison kept Southwestern to 358 yards offense, getting interceptions from Nelson Mederios and Clint Wilson. Nic Shegog and Tyler Day had seven tackles each. Jermaine Tucker added a sack, while Brynden Pitzer, Elie Rushing, Matt Shirey, Dominic Rosetti-Garrett and Demetri Turner had one each.
“We just kept battling defensively,” Mederios said. “Our offense gave us some motivation and we got to the ball pretty quickly.”
For his performance, Fields earned Central States Football League (CSFL)Offensive Player of the Week honors. A sophomore from Madill, he averaged 7.9 yards per carry, rushing for 151 yards on 19 carries, including touchdown runs of 20, 18 and 2 yards in OBU’s 42-21 win. It was the second time Fields won the CSFL honor.