Maybe Miami's offense DOES have an on-off switch.
After slogging along in the third quarter, allowing Jay to get back into Friday night's homecoming game here, the Wardogs used two fourth-quarter TDs to claim a 39-17 victory.
“We've seen it before - we saw it with Collinsville, Miami coach Chris Risenhoover said. “Momentum is huge. It's big in any sport. You rarely see teams get in that funk and come out of it all in the span of a game. Usually it takes you a week to get that stuff out.
The win was the third straight in District 4A-3 play for the Wardogs, who improved to 4-2 overall.
Jay - losing a second straight district game to fall to 1-2 - now is 3-3 overall.
“We felt good about everything at the half, other than not getting it in there at the end, Risenhoover said. The Dogs had a drive die at the Jay 2 with 6.7 seconds left when a Grant Longcrier pass to Michael Anderson in the end zone fell incomplete.
“Still, we were up by 25 and the defense was playing strong, Risenhoover said of Miami's 25-0 halftime score.
The Wardogs then put things on cruise control for about a 13-minute span, getting just one first down while sputtering on defense.
That allowed Jay, behind quarterback Boone Rogers, to shave the deficit back to a more manageable eight-point margin. During that stretch, Miami yielded a safety, an 83-yard touchdown bomb from Rogers to Casey Loomis and a 1-yard run by Rogers - on consecutive possessions.
Rogers rolled right and sprinted into the end zone untouched. Dakota Neconie handled the conversion, slashing Miami's lead down to 25-17 with 11:53 left in the game.
However, the Wardogs got back on track by scoring on snappy back-to-back possessions.
Miami took the ensuing kickoff and needed just six plays to score, with Chris Smith making a diving catch of an 11-yard touchdown pass from Longcrier.
Trent Turner netted 29 with a catch on the first play of the drive, then the Dogs benefitted from a late hit after an 8-yard carry by Longcrier.
An offsides call on the next play moved the ball to the Jay 9-yard line.
Longcrier was sacked for a 2-yard loss, then he threw incomplete to Nick Henson. Smith's touchdown catch came on third down.
Seth Rhodes' PAT kick bumped the lead back to 32-17 - the maximum 15 district points allowed - with 10:08 left in the game.
The Bulldogs didn't help themselves after the kickoff. Tucker Rutherford had a 26-yard runback, but Jay was flagged for holding. As a result, their drive started at their 23.
Three plays later, the visitors had minus-3 yards and were forced to punt.
Miami embarked on another quick scoring drive which was capped by a 29-yard run by Longcrier - on a play he suggested to Risenhoover moments earlier.
“He said coach, give it to me,' Risenhoover said. “They probably have the best defensive end in the district in No. 77 (senior Jacob Hawley). He was making some one-handed tackles on Tye on our counter plays and some of our inside zone plays. It was a read situation. Grant was tired of seeing it, and he wanted to run the counter. We did it and he took it in.
“I saw the end coming, so I thought we could pull it back and run, Longcrier said. We had to circle everybody up and said we can't do this again' when they got to within seven. Everything just started to click after that.
Rhodes booted the PAT to set the final score with 5:51 remaining.
“I was happy that we were able to overcome that lull, Risenhoover said. “We had two or three series there where we were three-and-out. That is kinda rare - I don't want to see it any more. Those things happen. It's time for us to step up and have some pride about us, get the thing in the end zone.
Longcrier accounted for 370 of Miami's 406 total yards and four of the six touchdowns.
He ran for 109 yards on 17 carries and completed 13 of 21 passes for 261 yards and three touchdowns.
“Grant is equally effective running the football, Risenhoover said. “We had some miscommunication in the first half. I had pretty much coached him into a coma. He was out here thinking and doing some things, but in our scheme, made some mistakes we could have hit some big plays with. But he came back and made some great plays in the second half with his feet.
Trent Turner accounted for two scores for the Wardogs.
He took a lateral from Longcrier and lobbed a 21-yard touchdown pass to Henson on the second play of the second quarter.
Turner added a 7-yard scoring run with 3:27 left in the half.
Longcrier teamed with Turley on a 46-yard pass, then Turner got the call on a reverse.
The conversion pass from Longcrier was incomplete, giving Miami its 25-0 halftime advantage.
“We were happy to get the win and the points, Risenhoover said. “If we had played all game like we did in the third quarter, this is one we could have lost.
Jay finished with 208 yards in total offense, with just 63 coming on the ground.
Miami limited the Bulldogs to only 63 yards total in the first half.
“The defense played extremely solid, Risenhoover said. “We couldn't have played any better in the first half.
Miami travels to Tulsa Webster Friday night.