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Bixby returns to dominating form with 6AI semifinal win against Owasso

Defending champion Spartans headed to the state title game for the 10th consecutive season
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SAND SPRINGS, OKLAHOMA – It was looking like a game when Owasso tied the score in the third period. 

Then Bixby returned to dominating form with a barrage of touchdowns in a span of just a few minutes.

Just like that, the Spartans were pouring it on and the Rams looked dejected.

In the end, Bixby rolled to a 56-14 win against Owasso on Friday afternoon and earned a berth in the Class 6AI state championship final for the second consecutive year since moving up from 6AII.

Bixby will be playing in a title game for the 10th straight year, going for a ninth gold ball within that span. It would also mean finishing on top for a sixth consecutive year.

The only year the Spartans came up short was in 2017 when they finished runners-up.

It also marked a fourth straight margin of victory over the Rams since both teams played in the 2022 season opener. Beginning an annual meeting in the season opener during Week Zero known as ”The Battle of the Burbs” at the University of Tulsa’s Chapman Stadium, Bixby beat Owasso, 49-14, in last year’s season opener.

Both teams met again in last year’s 6AI final. Although the game began competitively with both teams scoring on their first possession, the Spartans were dominant in a 69-6 rout.

In this season’s opener of the "Battle of the Burbs" at Chapman Stadium, Bixby dominated again, 42-16. And there is Friday.


Bixby led 14-7 at halftime.

The Rams tied the score with under six minutes left in the third quarter when Knox Dyson hit Noah Hill deep and wide open for a 55-yard touchdown reception.

With the game tied 14-14, it suddenly looked like a battle was in the works.

But here came Bixby.

Immediately, when the Spartans touched the ball, they got a solid return on the ensuing kickoff to their 45-yard line. On the first play of their drive, Jett Turner broke through the line to open spaces and went 55 yards to the goal and it was 21-14.

“We knew at halftime that we had to come out and run the ball, chew some clock, pound the rock, and that’s what we did,” Turner said. “The whole (offensive) line did a phenomenal job of making that hole wide open.”

Still in a competitive state, it appeared Owasso was going to answer back when Jayson Moll took a handoff on second down and broke a 29-yard run to the 30 until a Spartan defender forced the ball loose, where it was recovered by Bixby’s Cord Nolan at the Spartan 31.

It turned out to be the first of four turnovers committed by the Rams in the second half.

On third down from the Bixby 34, quarterback Carson Kirby sprinted down the sideline 66 yards for another TD, and the Spartans had doubled up on the Rams, 28-14, with 3:58 left in the third.

“We had ran that all week,” Kirby said. “But I saw a way to take it in all the way.”

With Owasso trying to catch up, Dyson passed on first down but the pass was intercepted by Cooper Parker, who took it back for a pick-six.

“The possessions before, I had messed up on a couple of plays,“ Parker said. “I knew I had to play the next play and recover from it. I read the run, dropped back, then split right to the end.”

Bixby utilizes 4 quarterbacks in season-opening win

In just over two minutes, the 21-point barrage turned the game from a tie into a rout.

“It felt really good. I got the momentum back our way,” Turner said. “But it didn’t matter. It was still early, third quarter. We still had to play hard.

"There was still a whole ball game to play and we couldn’t let up.”


The Bixby defense picked off Dyson twice more to get the Spartans' next two TDs in the fourth quarter.

Parker got his second TD of the day, this one on offense, on a 50-yard rush coming on the second play of the fourth quarter. Then Clay Peters added another on a 22-yard run with 9:07 left and it was 49-14.

A long punt return by Kordell Gouldsby gave the Spartans possession at the Owasso 5. Turner scored two plays later for the final TD.


Bixby opened the game with the upper hand as it had in previous meetings against Owasso.

After forcing the Rams to punt, it scored first as Kirby hit Nolan for a 17-yard TD with 9:10 left in the first quarter.

The Spartans then partially blocked an Owasso punt to get a short field, setting up a 3-yard TD by Turner, his first of the day, and the state champion was up 14-0 with 5:36 left to go in the first.

The Bixby defense had sacked Dyson three times for losses totaling 24 yards in the first half.


While Bixby moved out ahead by two TDs in the first half, Owasso moved no further past its own 29 despite getting one first down and a three-and-out.

But after its defense tightened up and forced Bixby to punt on its next two possessions, it turned to power running and converted on a fourth-and-inches play from the Bixby 18. Two plays later, Dyson connected with Hill, who barely crossed into the end zone as he leaped into the air before the catch for the TD with 2:17 left in the half.

With that, the Rams trimmed the Bixby lead to a one-score game.

The Rams’ momentum carried over into the second half, forcing Bixby to punt on its first two possessions, including a sack of Kirby for a loss of 8 yards on the first play of the half.

When Owasso touched the ball for the second time in the third period, Hill ran 37 yards from the 8 to the 45, setting up the tying-TD from Dyson to Hill.

Then there is the rest of the story.


BIxby out-gained Owasso, 408-358. Turner finished with 141 yards on 16 carries with three TDs. Every Bixby QB scored at least one TD.

Turner will be playing in the 6AI state final for the fourth straight year. He was a member of Bixby’s title teams last year, and played with Jenks' championship teams in 2020 and 2021.

“I’ve been to the state championship game every year since my freshman year,” Turner said. “It feels really good. It never gets old. Hopefully, we can come out and win the gold ball.”

Bixby will play Jenks, a 33-27 winner against Tulsa Union in the other 6AI state semifinal game Friday night, for the state title next week. The Spartans defeated the Trojans in the regular season finale earlier this month.

This time, the rematch between the Spartans and Trojans will kick off at 7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 1, at the University of Central Oklahoma campus in Edmond.

Photo of Bixby's Carson Kirby by Brett Rojo, Sand Springs Leader

-- Mike Moguin | @SBLiveOK