By Chaz Millard
On Friday night the Oxford Wildcats played host to the Wolves from Clarkston and celebrated military appreciation night.
The game may not have gone the way Oxford would have hoped falling 48-0 but the interaction of the players and families that they represented truly demonstrated what high school athletics is all about.
Each player had the name of a military veteran on their jersey to honor them for their service. Some players had the name of someone from their own family on the back like Grandpa Matczak.
At the conclusion of the game the players met with the veteran and their families. Some shared stories of what they went through, others hugged and some were so overcome with emotion that they wept. Seeing this transpire really made the outcome of the game minimal considering what each of these veterans, ranging from World War II up to now, had endured serving the country.
As far as the game, the score really tells a lot.
Clarkston arrived on the hot September evening ready to play. They took control early with their option offense and their tenacious defense.
Following a score on their opening possession, the Wolves would force turnovers on the next two drives by Oxford deep in Wildcat territory and capitalize with touchdowns. After the first quarter, the game was 20-0.
The remainder of the first half did not get much better despite being able to move the ball a little more on offense and offering up some resistance on defense.
Unfortunately for Oxford they just couldn’t find the answer they needed to put points on the board and trailed 34-0 at the half.
In the third quarter the Wildcats were finally able to move deep into Clarkston territory but were unable to cash in for a score.
Based on the way the game had been going it was almost inevitable that Clarkston would score again and they did extending to a 41-0.
Tempers began to flare with both teams being handed penalties for personal fouls.
The Wolves would score one more time to end things 48-0.
Oxford’s offense finished the game with 222 total yards and were led by sophomore running back Drew Carpenter, who touched the ball 13 times for a total of 58 yards.
The loss drops Oxford to 1-3 in the OAA Red and 1-4 overall.
Oxford travels to West Bloomfield on Thursday, Sept. 28 for a 7 p.m. game.