Morgan Toben recalls being part of a special era in Owasso athletics.
Toben was just a newcomer when names like Celeste St. Gemme, Kylie Spurgeon and Jasmine Webb were leading the Rams basketball program. During her first two varsity seasons, Toben was part of two state tournament teams and she nearly concluded her decorated career with another trip to state.
“We were a big group of friends,” said Toben, a 2010 OHS graduate. “We loved playing together. We had that chemistry and worked well together.”
Also part of Owasso’s lone state championship volleyball team in 2008, the two-sport star who later went on to play at the Division I level, Toben will one of the newest members of the Owasso Athletic Hall of Fame.
Toben joins Clark Ogilvie, Dusty Duncan, Liz (Eisterhold) Barber, Jaylen Lowe, Levi Molini and Steve Parker in the 2019 class. The seven members will be introduced during Friday’s homecoming game against Norman North followed by the Hall of Fame induction ceremony Saturday evening.
The former Ram standout holds numerous school records including single-game marks for points (39) and 3-pointers (6). One the best Owassons ever on the boards, Toben holds the single-season record for offensive rebounds (120), defensive rebounds (193) and total rebounds (282). For her career, Toben leads all Rams in made 3-pointers (132), 3-point percentage (36.7), free throws made (257) and rebounding average with eight per game.
After learning the aforementioned Ram standouts, Toben became the player others looked to in her final couple of seasons on varsity.
“It forced me to be more of a leadership role,” Toben said. “I had to be more of a captain instead of just playing a role.”
It was a role that allowed Toben to thrive.
She earned All-Conference first team as a junior. In her senior season, Toben averaged 17.9 points and 11 rebounds per game, which earned her first-team All-State honors, Frontier Valley Conference Player of the Year, the Tulsa World All-Metro Player of the Year and a McDonald’s All-American nomination.
Toben later went on to play college basketball at the University of New Mexico. After her first season with the Lobos, Toben transferred to Oklahoma State. She was initially a walk-on to the Cowgirl program before earning a scholarship.
Toben, who currently resides in Owasso and works as a pharmacist, said the lessons she learned under former Rams coach and current Rep. Mark Vancuren served her long past her high school years.
“The biggest thing was from discipline,” Toben said of Vancuren, who will introduce her at Saturday’s HOF ceremony. “I learned a lot of discipline from Coach V. I didn’t always like it at the time, but I wouldn’t have been the player I was without him pushing me. College athletes have a lot of responsibilities on their plate. You’ve got to be able to handle doing well in the classroom and on the court.”