Eagles wrap up 49-28 district road win
It was half past midnight. Players were covered in rain, muck and sweat. And there was still a three-hour bus ride back home.
Despite all of that, the Eisenhower team was all smiles after its game against Woodward. After lightning delayed the game for nearly two-and-a-half hours, Eisenhower rallied with a renewed sense of urgency and purpose. Spurred by a virtuoso performance by do-it-all quarterback RJ Fisher, The Eagles scored twice in the final 10 minutes to beat Woodward, 49-28, putting the Eagles at 3-0 in District 5A-2 and ever-so-close to a playoff berth.
With 10:31 left in the game, a lightning delay was put in effect as storms swept through northwest Oklahoma. At the time, Eisenhower led Woodward, 36-28, but the momentum was all with the Boomers, who had climbed back from a 22-point deficit in the third quarter to cut the lead to eight one play before the delay.
Ike coach Mike Burris said his team got a little "stir-crazy" being cooped up for so long in the locker room, but said the stoppage was actually one of the best things that could have happened to his team.
"It really helped us, having the delay, because they had kind of worn us down a little bit," Burris said. "We came back out fresh."
The players returned to the field for warm-ups at 11:45, seemingly excited to get back to it. Mark Berry and Norman Williams, Jr., exchanged air-guitar riffs as the stadium sound system blasted AC/DC's "Thunderstruck", a fitting song for the occassion. This Eisenhower team did not look like the one that entered the locker room with its back against the ropes. This team looked loose, rejuvenated and, as Burris said, fresh.
On the third play after the restart, Fisher kept the ball on a read-option, ran up the middle and evaded defenders on his way to a 49-yard touchdown run. Burris had sent his offense onto the field hoping to regain momentum. He just didn't expect his quarterback to have such an emphatic response so quickly.
"I just told him, 'We need to go score,'" Burris said. "I didn't know he was going to do it that quick."
The senior had an all-around performance. He ran for 231 yards and three touchdowns, threw for a score and also had three interceptions from his safety position, including an 88-yard return for a touchdown. Fisher had more than 400 all-purpose yards. Fisher had to miss the 2016 meeting between these two teams, which ended in a 37-23 loss for Ike. Fisher made up for time lost by giving the Boomers fits on offense, defense and special teams.
"It makes a difference," Burris said. "Compare it to last year, we didn't have him in this game and they beat us. This year, having him made that much difference."