RAMONA — Erupting for 27 points in the fourth quarter Friday Oct. 6t, the Commerce Tigers earned a 46-26 District 2A-8 victory over the Caney Valley Trojans.
With the victory the Tigers are 2-0 in the district and 4-2 on the season while the Trojans are 2-1 in 2A-8 and 4-2 overall.
Commerce travels to Wyandotte for a 7 p.m. district showdown Friday, Oct. 13. The Bears are 2-1 in the district and 4-2 on the year. The Bears suffered a 50-17 loss Friday night at Adair.
“Wyandotte really gave Adair a good game; they just had some bad breaks go against them,” Commerce head coach Steve Moss said. “We’ll be at 100 percent going into that game, so it should be a very competitive game.”
Against Caney Valley, the Tigers grabbed a 13-0 score in the first 12 minutes.
Using a “pound and ground” attack, the Tigers received a 14-yard touchdown run by junior running back Jesse Cardenas with 5:42 showing on the clock. Hayden Moss kicked the extra point for a 7-0 lead.
Less than two minutes later, senior cornerback Lupe Prado intercepted an errant Christian Colbert pass to give Commerce the ball at the Trojan 40-yard line.
Junior running back Ryan Dunbar found a lane and ran 40 yards for a touchdown with 3:12 left in the first quarter. The two-point conversion pass failed as the Tigers maintained a 13-0 lead.
Consuming five minutes in the second quarter, Caney Valley received an 8-yard TD pass from Colbert to wide out Brandon Fogle. Colbert, a transfer from Bartlesville, ran in the two-point conversion as the Trojans trailed 13-8 with 5:17 until halftime.
The Colbert-to-Fogle combination clicked for a 9-yard touchdown pass at 7:35 of the third quarter. The conversion run was stuffed as the Trojans trailed by a 19-14 margin.
Over a four minute period to start the fourth quarter Commerce reeled off 22 straight points to construct a 40-14 advantage.
Junior running back Chris Ibarra returned to the starting lineup after being sidelined three games with an injury.
Ibarra scored on a 3-yard plunge just 51 seconds into the final quarter. Commerce failed on the two-point conversion run.
“With Chris coming back feeling healthy, it was really nice to have him in our backfield again,” coach Moss said. “We were able to open up our ground game like we have wanted to all year long.”
Quarterback Hayden Moss completed an 8-yard TD pass to wide out Hunter Burkybile with 9:04 left in the game. Ibarra’s two-point conversion run gave the Tigers a 33-14 cushion.
Moss found senior Trevor Browning open on a crossing pattern for a 36-yard touchdown reception with 8:53 remaining in the game. Moss booted the point-after for a 40-14 lead.
Colbert scored on runs of 1 and 6 yards in the final five minutes to close out Caney Valley’s scoring. Neither conversion run was good.
Ibarra contributed a 5-yard TD burst with 1:22 left in the game for Commerce’s final points. The conversion run failed.
“Offensively we played pretty good,” coach Moss said. “We had a receiver (Prado) go out with an injury and had to replace him which caused our passing game to be a little off, but our offensive line stepped up and created holes and our running backs ran hard.
Ibarra rushed for 167 yards on 34 carries with three TDs while Dunbar contributed 116 yards on 11 carries and one touchdown.
The Commerce ground game amassed 327 yards on 42 carries with five TDs.
Hayden Moss completed 4 of 8 passes for 58 yards and two touchdowns without an interception.
From his middle linebacker position, Dunbar led the Commerce defense with six unassisted tackles and 11 assists.