By Hayden Tucker
Defeating opponents by a large margin has become a commonplace for Southwest Covenant football but their win Friday meant more than the others.
The Patriots toppled Medford (5-4, 4-2) 63-30 to go undefeated on the regular season and win the district championship.
In all of Southwest Covenant’s history no such feat has been accomplished. The Patriots are 9-0 with momentum heading forward.
As the final buzzer sounded, the Patriots wasted no time to celebrate the historic moment.
“The way they celebrated after,” coach Trey Cloud said of what stood out most to him after the win. “That’s what we do it for. I tell them every week to enjoy the moment and they’ll hear that two or three times a week. I say, ‘enjoy the moment,’ and that’s what it’s about.
“This stuff, you don’t forget.”
This was the most competitive game Southwest Covenant has played all season. They’ve won by mercy rule more times than not this year, this was one of the rarer full games they’ll play.
“I think we’re definitely playing a good brand of football. We’re where we want to be. We’re going to compete each and every week and we’re going to continue to compete every week, but we have to.
“If we get complacent – and that’s hard when you’re winning games, and that’s why this game is awesome because it was a closer game at times.”
Quarterback Ben Webb went 5 for 13 on passing, securing 144 yards through the air and three TD’s. Tyler Kelly led the team in rushing yards with 107 yards, he made his way in the end zone twice in the game. Kelly also threw one pass for 92 yards, scoring pass.
Medford edged out the Patriots in total yards offense 445 to 444. Southwest Covenant had an even attack on the ground and through the air. They had 236 passing yards and 208 rushing yards.
Yellow flags flew throughout the night.
Both the Patriots and the Cardinals were called for 11 penalties. Medford was pushed back 94 yards to Southwest Covenant’s 47. Many of the calls were for off sides and other small hiccups.
“We made some mental mistakes and being undisciplined,” Cloud said. “We gave up four penalties in one drive. Stuff like that is frustrating but we can learn from that. It’s all on film and that’s what’s great about it, is I hate blowing people out every week.”
Cloud said the Patriots will need to clean up their act heading into the playoffs.
“We’ve got to watch the ball and not jump,” he said. “It’s plain and simple. They did that little cadence, we worked on it all week and we still jumped twice. That’s just one of those things we need to cut out.”
Southwest Covenant has been on top of their game all season and Friday was no exception. Cloud believes there aren’t many teams in their field that can take them down.
“I think we’ve got a good chance,” he said. “There’s not a team out there I look at and I think, ‘oh crap.’ I think we’ve got a shot in every game so if we play our brand of football, we’ll be okay. We’ve got to continue to do that.”
The Patriots will take their home field once again this Friday when they host Sasakwa. Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m.