One thing is for certain: these are not your grandfather's Coffeyville Red Ravens.
A program that once dominated the Jayhawk Conference, was embarrassed on Saturday.
Garden City Community College's Nate Cox became the first Broncbuster quarterback since Terry Wilson, in the 2017 Heart of Texas Bowl, to throw for 300 yards in a game. Jadon Hayes and Ramon Jefferson each reached the end zone twice, and No. 5 Garden City powered past Coffeyville 58-14 at Broncbuster Stadium.
"We thought we could get some bombs over the top on them," GCCC Head Coach Tom Minnick said. "We wanted to make sure people saw us throwing. I'm glad we finally completed some over the top because if we continue to do that, we will be hard to beat."
Cox came out firing, hitting on his first four passes. In fact, the Broncbusters first play was a 53-yard bomb to MJ Link where the sophomore quarterback got both the linebackers and the safeties to bite on a play-action fake. Three plays after that, Jefferson blasted into the end zone from a yard out, and Garden City had a 7-0 lead with 11:03 to play in the first.
Garden City displayed their most balanced attack of the season. They ran it 43 times for 311 yards and threw it 20 times for 302 yards.
On the other sideline, the Red Ravens managed just 32 total yards in the first half and 156 yards for the game. Their offensive line surrendered six sacks, and they averaged an anemic 2.4 yards per play.
The Broncbusters meantime looked like a machine in the first quarter, scoring on their first three possessions; the second of which came following Willie Ervin's fourth blocked punt of the season, that gave Garden City the ball at the Red Ravens' 30. Garden City then converted a fourth-and-four, when Cox hit Kevaughn Dingle for nine yards, and a third-and-11 when he fired a strike to Link for 13 yards. That was followed up with a jet sweep by Troy'Von Johnson, who turned the corner running right for a three-yard touchdown for a 14-0 advantage with 4:29 remaining in the first.
On their third possession of the game, Garden City used a combination of run and pass to reach pay dirt. Cox zipped one ball to Ellis Merriweather for 14 yards. He then connected with Link for 11, that moved the Broncbusters down to the Coffeyville 22. Moments later, Hayes found a crease and ran untouched to the end zone for a 21-0 cushion.
With the Red Ravens struggling to do anything offensively, Garden City extended their lead later in the second period as Jefferson added a 73-yard run, that eventually setup Andre Dos Santos Aires' 25-yard field goal that made it 24-0.
Missed opportunity aside, Garden City thoroughly dominated the first half, outgaining Coffeyville 284-32.
Then in the third, offensive coordinator Mike Orthmann unleased a vertical passing attack that had somewhat been missing from Garden City's repertoire.
On the Broncbusters second offensive series, Cox floated a pass down the middle for Link, who burned past Coffeyville's Nate Shields for a 45-yard touchdown. A couple of minutes later, Cox went back to the air, this time hooking up with Johnson on a 66-yard toss to make it, 37-0.
"A big thing for us today was just to make sure that we read our keys," Broncbuster defensive lineman Ryan McClain said. "Coffeyville ran a similar-type offense to Independence."
The only dark cloud that hung over the Broncbusters in the second half was not holding onto the shutout.
That ended when Red Ravens' backup quarterback Edwin Kleinpeter, who replaced Cam Smith early in the first half, found Tyquez Hampton all alone for a 33-yard touchdown. Kleinpeter added another scoring toss later in the third when he hit Challen Faamautau on a wheel route up the right sideline for 17 yards.
The Broncbusters countered with Hayes' one-yard touchdown run that was setup by Cox's 53-yard completion to Aamir Holmes. Then in the fourth quarter, Jefferson capped off a five-play, 70-yard march, that included a 39-yard run by Cox, with a four-yard dash to the end zone to make it 51-14. They capped the scoring in the final minute when Merriweather broke loose for a 56-yard touchdown, putting an exclamation mark on one of the most dominating wins of the season.
Garden City once again owned the clock, holding the ball for nearly 33 minutes while totaling 613 yards. Link caught four balls for 122 and a touchdown, while Holmes came in off the bench to haul in four for 79. Merriweather led the way with 10 tackles, 1.5 sacks and 2.5 tackles for loss.
"Our motto is to treat every game like it's the National Championship Game," McClain said. "This is college football, and all these teams are good. So we just need to prepare for this next game like we normally do."
Garden City will host No. 4 Hutchinson at 1 p.m. on Saturday at Broncbuster Stadium.
Coffeyville 0 0 14 0 - 14
Garden City 14 10 20 14 - 58