SPIRO — Two years ago, the Spiro Bulldogs football team got to the Class 3A state quarterfinals before losing to Oklahoma City Heritage Hall. Unfortunately for senior Jermaine Jimmerson, he did not get to participate in that postseason due to breaking his leg in that season opener against Panama.
After the ’Dogs failed to make the playoffs last year, they are returning to postseason play beginning tonight. No one is happier about that than Jimmerson.
“It feels really good,” he said. “I know coach [Chris Bunch] is proud of us, but we know we have to work harder and get ready [for a playoff run]. I feel that we can be even better than we are now if we really want to, but at times we don't take things as serious as we should.”
The Bulldogs ended the regular season with a 26-18 Senior Night victory over the Checotah Wildcats to clinch third place in District 3A-8, meaning they were sent to the District 3A-7 runner-up. As of Friday night, that looked like it was going to be a road trip to Muskogee to face the Hilldale Hornets, since they were runner-up to Sequoyah-Tahlequah. However, over the weekend, it was discovered that Seqouyah-Tahlequah violated a summer team camp rule, and the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association made them forfeit all of their wins — making them be the District 3A-7 cellar-dwelling team.
Thus, the other teams moved up one notch, making Hilldale the district winner and Keys (Park Hill), which was originally the third-place team of District 3A-7, become the runner-up team behind Hilldale. So, instead of the Bulldogs preparing this week for the Hornets, they've been preparing instead for the Cougars, who they will face at 7:30 tonight in Park Hill just south of Tahlequah.
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To Get There — Take Oklahoma State Highway 9 west past Sunset Corner to U.S. Highway 59. Take U.S. 59 north to Sallisaw. Take Interstate 40 west to Vian. Take Oklahoma State Highway 82 north to Park Hill.