For the first time since 2013, the Yukon football program closed its regular season with a winning record.
The Millers took down Edmond Memorial 35-6 Friday at Wolves Stadium in Edmond to close the season 6-4 overall and 3-4 in district play.
Despite not achieving their ultimate goal of making the postseason, Yukon coach Jeremy Reed said his program is headed in the right direction.
“Going 6-4 was a huge step. We had a very tough schedule. Our guys came a long way mentally. We are not where we want to be. We are not satisfied with 6-4. I would like to be going home to prepare for Week 11, but we have come a long way in a short period of time. These kids have laid a building block for the future.”
Despite starting fast and going 71 yards capped by a 54-yard touchdown run from Antonio Washington and a Cody Watson extra-point to open the game with a 7-0 lead, the first half was anything but pretty for the Millers.
On its second possession, facing a third and long, Yukon attempted a pass that was intercepted by Edmond Memorial and returned to the Miller 16.
Two plays later, the Bulldogs punched it in from one-yard out. Memorial missed the point-after-attempt, so Yukon was able to keep the lead at 7-6.
Numerous personal foul penalties and several player ejections made the rest of the first half ugly for both teams.
The Millers were able punch one more touchdown in before the end of the second quarter on a three-yard scamper from Landon Donoho followed by a Watson extra-point capping a 67-yard drive to give Yukon a 14-6 lead at the half.
Reed said was not pleased with how his team behaved in the first two quarters.
“Halftime was spent on reminding the kids our program does not tolerate or accept behavior like we saw in the first half. I told the guys if I saw it again, I was going to walk off the field and forfeit. We are not going to act like that. I am really proud of how we responded following my request.”
The second half was a different story for the Millers.
After a defensive stop, Yukon went 45 yards capped by a five-yard touchdown run from Jackson Young and a Watson PAT to put the Millers up 21-6.
Yukon’s defense continued to control the Memorial offense and the Millers’ offense again drove 45 yards on its next possession capped by a 26-yard touchdown run from Donoho and a Watson extra-point to give Yukon a 28-6 lead that it would carry into the fourth quarter.
The Millers had one more scoring drive in them in the final frame. Yukon went 81 yards capped by Young’s second touchdown of the night, this one from three-yards out, that put Yukon up 35-6 following the Watson PAT.
Following Friday night’s win, Reed’s first two years have seen Yukon go 10-10 compared to the previous two years, where the Millers were a combined 2-18.
“It was good to take a two-game winning streak into the offseason,” Reed said. “This has been a tremendous turnaround for this senior class. We as coaches had to have them buy in from day one or our wins and losses would have been horrible. This senior class could have gone either way because of the struggles they had gone through as a group. This past offseason, this senior class made the decision to change some things and it made this year a great year. It was a lot of fun.”