EDMOND — Behind a smothering defense and the golden toe of Trevor Moore, Edmond North left no doubt Friday night as to which Edmond team is currently the best in town.
With the exception of two plays, the Huskies short-circuited Edmond Santa Fe's high-powered, pinball-like offense and defeated the Wolves 26-13, at Wantland Stadium in an Edlam clash of two top 10 teams.
Edmond North entered the game ranked No. 7 in 6A while the Wolves were ranked No. 4. That will change next week.
“All week, they talked about how we were going to lose and how they were the better team and ranked over us,” Edmond North running back Michael Farmer said. “We came out with a sense of urgency. We wanted it more than they did.”
Edmond North can call itself Edlam champion. The Huskies also beat Edmond Memorial in Week 1.
Moore kicked four field goals Friday night, and Edmond North's relentless defense stuffed Santa Fe's running game. The Wolves finished with minus-5 yards rushing as a team, and quarterback Justice Hansen never was comfortable in the pocket as Edmond North dominated the game in the trenches. The Huskies were the most physical team and beat the Wolves up front.
“We thought we had an advantage there coming in,” said Edmond North coach Jeremy Dombek. “Our defense and kicking game were outstanding tonight. Trever Moore was phenomenal.”
Moore kicked field goals of 32, 40, 21 and 29 yards for the Huskies. On offense, the Huskies rolled up 216 yards on the ground led by Ezel McIntee's 101 yards on 14 carries. Michael Farmer rushed for 73 yards on 10 carries, including a 6-yard touchdown run.
Quarterback Luke Hoskins was efficient through the air, going 14 of 22 for 114 yards with one touchdown and one interception. His fourth-quarter touchdown pass to Luke Rossi iced the game for the Huskies, but it was the defense that was the biggest factor.
Dombek called Edmond North's defensive performance on Friday night one of the best since he arrived at the school.
“We are really fast on defense,” he said. “A lot of people don't really give us credit for having a lot of speed on defense. We are not just fast on the back end. Our front seven guys all run about 4.8 (in the 40-yard dash) or better. They can all run.”
Santa Fe was playing catch-up all night. An early turnover when Trevan Smith fumbled a kick-off put the Wolves in a 10-0 hole after Farmer scored three plays later.
Edmond North increased its lead to 16-0 on two Moore field goals before Hansen finally connected with Dale Jefferson on a 61-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter.
The Wolves trailed 23-6 after Rossi's touchdown catch, before Hansen hit Smith for an 80-yard scoring toss late in the fourth quarter.
Other than those two big plays in the passing game, Edmond North's defense kept the Wolves on a short leash the entire night.
Hansen finished with 15 of 29 for 260 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Hansen blamed himself for Santa Fe's poor offensive showing.
“Our defense played great, props to them,” Hansen said. “I think a lot of it is on me. If I get the ball out of hand and complete passes, we are perfectly fine. A lot of that falls on me. We never got a rhythm, and a lot of that is what our offense is. We live off making big-time plays, key plays, and none of us did that tonight.”
Hansen, however, said North's defense was tough to run against.
“They did a good job up front and with their linebackers, filling the holes,” he said.
Santa Fe coach Lance Manning admitted the Wolves were outmuscled.
“Our lack of experience up front is a lot of it,” Manning said. “We got four new starters up front, and they got after us and they pressured us. Obviously, we didn't figure things out quickly enough. Hats off to Edmond North. We just got outplayed. We just got to get better.”
Edmond North cornerback Curtis Woods said the Huskies played Friday night liked they had practiced all week.
“All week, we heard we were the underdog,” he said. “We prepared all week in practice, and we came out and did our job. It's a huge win. It's going to help us going into district play.”
Dombek called the victory a big momentum builder for the Huskies.
“It's still a non-district game, but we are not going to downplay it,” he said. “We know it's a big win to springboard us into district play.”