MIDWEST CITY — Things couldn't have started much better for Putnam City North.
The Panthers' senior running back, Tae Moore, hadn't put the game away eight minutes into the District 6A-3 game, but he'd certainly helped nearly bury Midwest City.
Putnam North started hot, then cruised to a 63-27 win over the Bombers at Rose Field that didn't feel even that close.
“That was about as good as we could play,” Panthers coach Bob Wilson said of the first quarter.
Moore carried the ball on each of the first six plays for the Panthers and on 11 of their first 12.
By the time that stretch was over, he already had four touchdowns and 161 yards as the Panthers led 28-0 with more than four minutes remaining in the first quarter.
“It was outstanding,” Moore said. “I was surprised by all the holes out there.”
Putnam North (4-2 overall, 2-1 district) matched its win total from each of the last two seasons.
With just one team remaining on its schedule with more than two wins so far, Putnam North seems headed for its first playoff berth since 2009.
As he heard of other scores from around the area, some surprising, Wilson said the Panthers couldn't let up.
That was a lesson Putnam North took from a 52-28 loss to Edmond North on Sept. 21, when the Panthers took an early lead only to see things fall apart.
“That was a good experience for us,” Moore said. “It showed us we can't take anything for granted and we can't let up.”
The Bombers (1-5, 1-2) started the season having won 37 consecutive district games. They have now lost two of their first three district games and with undefeated Edmond North among the teams remaining on the schedule, the Bombers need to turn things around quickly to avoid missing the playoffs for the first time since 2005.
The Panthers' win was their first over Midwest City in the last five meetings.
“They're still Midwest City,” Wilson said of a team that was No. 6 in the preseason rankings. “They're a young team, but they have a lot of tradition. We've got tradition, too, and we're trying to get back to that.
“We've had some great battles with them over the years, and it's still special to come into Rose Field and get a win.”
Moore finished with 187 rushing yards on 19 carries and added a 30-yard touchdown catch in the third quarter.
Larry Butler had a 60-yard touchdown reception on a shovel pass and returned a kickoff for a touchdown.
Butler's return — the opening kick of the second half — was one of two for TDs by North.
Qualan Johnson had 106 yards rushing and a touchdown for Midwest City.