East Central girls topple Cushing
BY JOHN D. FERGUSON World Correspondent
Saturday, December 29, 2012
12/29/12 at 6:22 AM
Darreion Clark took coach Samy Mack's advice to heart Friday night. Clark was asked to unleash the defensive beast she was in her freshman and sophomore seasons.
Clark responded with seven steals, 12 points and generally harassed Cushing. The result: East Central 73, Cushing 55 and a berth in Saturday night's 14th Tournament of Champions girls bracket final in Oral Roberts University's Mabee Center.
East Central will meet Anadarko in Saturday's at 7 p.m. final. Anadarko toppled Jenks 72-66 in the other semifinal.
In other action, Erick defeated Dewar 62-58 and Verdigris rallied to beat Colbert 50-48. Erick and Verdigris meet in the fifth-place contest at noon. Dewar takes on Colbert at 9 a.m. for seventh. Cushing faces Jenks at 5:30 p.m. for third.
The Class 5A No. 2 Cardinals (6-1) looked sharp. Class 4A No. 3 Cushing (11-1) did not have an answer for East Central's attack led by Clark on the perimeter and sophomore Sharayla Brown inside.
Brown had a big night with 11 points, 14 rebounds and two blocked shots. Brown also had the tough task of guarding Che'Ron Lewis. Lewis held her own, but nearly every one of her 22 points was contested.
"Darrieon and I had a heart-to-heart talk before the game," Mack said. "I told her she was a ball hawk as a freshman and a ball hawk as a sophomore. I wanted to go back to that."
Clark did just that.
When told of her number of steals, Clark answered, "It is a pretty good accomplishment. We played well together as a team and got it done on the defensive end."
The problem Cushing had to deal with was not only East Central's full-court pressure, but the Cardinals were making basket after basket. Four East Central players had 10 or more points led by Clark's 12 followed by Brown, Ariel Williams and Janee Arnold at 11 points each.
Lewis led Cushing with 22 points and 11 rebounds. The senior also had eight assists.
Anadarko 72, Jenks 66: Relentless Anadarko used offensive balance and a thieving defense to undo Class 6A No. 16 Jenks (5-4). Kelia Pahcoddy led the 4A No. 1 Warriors (9-1) with 20 points and 13 rebounds. She also hit 9-of-11 shots from the field.
Lakota Beatty added 17 points, including three 3-point baskets. Ashley Beatty added 14 and had six steals. Kylie Parker tallied 13.
Jenks pulled to within four points at 67-63 with 1:11 following a 3-point basket by Josie Halsmer, but the rally fizzled. Trojan Jessica Washington turned in a gutty performance with 29 points.
"No matter how big the other team is, we have to attack the basket," said Anadarko coach Lance Weeks.
"It means a lot to beat a 6A team," said Pahcoddy. "It's big win for us."
Verdigris 50, Colbert 48 (girls): Caitlyn Hanslovan hit a 3-point basket with seven seconds left to lift Class 3A's No. 4 Cardinals (9-2) to a pulsating, back and forth finish. Class 2A No. 5 Colbert (10-3) had two shots near the basket at the end, but could not tie the game.
Verdigris blew a 12-point lead near the end of the second quarter. The Leopards went on an 18-5 run to grab the lead. The game see-sawed in the final 10 minutes with one tie and four lead changes.
Hanslovan nailed the big shot, but teammate Baileigh O'Dell was needed as she had five of her 20 points in the last 1:21.
"I'm more of a defensive player and I get more assists, so getting 11 points was big for me. I'm more of a playmaker," Hanslovan said.
Colbert got 20 points from Ginavee Mowles.
Erick 62, Dewar 58 (girls): Makenzie Kelly hit four 3-point baskets en route to 22 points as Erick rallied to victory. The Class B No. 7 Bearcats (12-3) trailed 35-25 just before the end of the half, but pulled to within two with a 16-8 run.
Hannah Millar complemented Kelly with 15 points and 14 rebounds. Maranda Janz added 12 points, including the 3-pointer that gave Erick the lead for good with 6:04 left in the game.
Class A No. 4 Dewar (6-2) had a pair of 17-point performances from Crystal Nero and Star Simmons. Cheyenne Been added 13.
EAST CENTRAL 73, CUSHING 55
Cushing: Lewis 22, Jones 12, Burris 8, Jackson 8, Hagler 3, K. McCullough 2.
East Central: Clark 12, Brown 11, Williams 11, Arnold 11, Pitts 9, Billie 7, Reed 6, Mack 4, Gritts 2.
ANADARKO 72, JENKS 66
Anadarko: Ke. Pahcoddy 20, L. Beatty 17, A. Beatty 14, Parker 13, Williams 4, King 4.
Jenks: Washington 29, Sears 11, Halsmer 7, Luellen 5, Crase 5, Peterson 4, Prince 3, Dennis 2.
ERICK 62, DEWAR 58
Erick: Kelly 22, Millar 15, Mar. Janz 12, May 7, K. Brinkley 4, H. Brinkley 2.
Dewar: Simmons 17, Nero 17, C. Been 13, Westmoreland 8, Lane 3.
VERDIGRIS 50, COLBERT 48
Colbert: Mowles 20, Hair 9, Weger 6, Cummins 5, Lyons 4, Bradford 4.
Verdigris: O'Dell 20, Hanslovan 11, Risenhoover 8, Payne 7, Collins 2, Barbee 2.
Tournament of Champions: Girls
At ORU's Mabee Center
Jenks 54, Verdigris 40
East Central 79, Dewar 44
Cushing 43, Erick 36
Anadarko 63, Colbert 47
Erick 62, Dewar 58
Verdigris 50, Colbert 48
East Central 73, Cushing 55
Anadarko 72, Jenks 66
Dewar vs. Colbert (7th), 9 a.m.
Erick vs. Verdigris (5th), noon
Cushing vs. Jenks (3rd), 4 p.m.
East Central vs. Anadarko (1st), 7 p.m.
East Central's Ariel Williams tries to get around Cushing's Shaunda Hagler during the Tournament of Champions semifinals Friday at the Mabee Center. JAMES GIBBARD/Tulsa World
East Central's Janee Arnold goes up for a shot over Cushing's Taylor Jones (left) Friday at the Mabee Center. JAMES GIBBARD/Tulsa World