MIAMI — The COVID-19 bug has bitten the Miami High School football team.
The Wardogs’ final non-district game against Verdigris was bumped back to noon Saturday at Red Robertson Field because of coronavirus issues.
“We would be without three starters. Now with it being Saturday, we’ll miss only one two-way starter,” MHS head coach Zach Gardner said via text Tuesday.
Four players missed the Wardogs’ 14-6 loss at Jay Friday, Sept. 4.
“We have some in quarantine and that will allow that to expire Friday,” athletic director Chad Davis said Tuesday. “We were going to be missing quite a few kids. From a depth perception, it was not going to be very good.”
Seniors will still be recognized, with that ceremony starting at 11:30 a.m.
This will be Miami’s first rescheduled game since 2015, when the Wardogs’ game with Cleveland had to be pushed back due to a lengthy lightning delay at Red Robertson Field.
The Thursday night game was completed the next day.
The Wardogs’ most memorable delay came in 1986.
Flooding forced a key district game with Claremore to be played on a Monday night. That meant the Dogs had to play three games in a week: Friday, Oct. 10 against Tulsa Edison, Monday, Oct. 13 with Claremore and Friday, Oct. 17 against Pryor.
They won all three.
Following Saturday’s game, MHS will be idle until Sept. 25, when it travels to Bristow for the District 4A-3 opener.
Verdigris, back on the Wardog schedule for the first time since 2017, kicked this season off with a 45-6 victory over Sperry.
Sophomore quarterback Dylan White completed 15 of 25 passes for 206 yards and two touchdowns and ran for another against Sperry.
The Cardinals were 10-3 a year ago losing to Plainview in the 3A state semifinals.
“They are well coached, balanced, have good size and are very skilled,” Gardner said. “They have all the attributes of being a great football team.”
Miami had only six points and 227 yards in total offense in the Jay loss.
The Wardogs managed only 29 yards rushing.
The only MHS points came with 8:01 remaining on a 4-yard Keaton Jinks-to-Jonah Redden pass, capping off a 64-yard drive.
The PAT kick by Shane Douthit was blocked.
“We got outplayed at the line of scrimmage and we must improve there to generate more offense,” Gardner said. “Defensively we made great strides and played much better. Our defense created two turnovers and one in special teams.
“We just need to turn those into points, which we were unable to do.”