Players to watch

Conner Calavan, Fort Gibson: The Central Oklahoma signee scored 41 in a win over McAlester last Tuesday and led the Class 4A No. 12 Tigers to the Old Fort Classic championship during the weekend with 67 points in three games en route to MVP honors.

Ryne Freeman, Pryor: Senior guard averaged 17 points in three games during the weekend as the 5A No. 12 Tigers went 2-1 at the Red Crown Credit Union Pryor Invitational.

Harrison Smith, Regent Prep: Senior guard averages 11 points per game and leads the Class A No. 13 Rams in assists and steals. Regent coach Kerwin Dees said, “he is a great competitor and ball handler.”

Teams to watch

Oologah (11-5): Coach Nathan Smith’s Mustangs won the Pryor Invitational last weekend as Mr. Outside candidate Konner Davis had a team-high 48 points in the three games. Oologah hosts 4A No. 13 Fort Gibson on Friday.

Pawnee (15-0): The 2A No 9 Black Bears defeated Mannford 61-45 on Saturday to win the North Country Tournament.

Rejoice Christian (10-5): The defending 2A champions bounced back from a five-game losing streak with four wins last week, capped by a 64-43 victory over Verdigris in the Chouteau Tournament final. Gage Barham had 52 points and Mr. Inside candidate Jaden Lietzke 44 in three games.

Games to watch

East Central (10-6) at Memorial (15-3), Tuesday: Memorial graduate and longtime Chargers assistant Nate West returns to his alma mater for the first time as East Central’s head coach. The pick: Memorial 65, East Central 59.

B.T. Washington (9-5) at Broken Arrow (13-2), Friday: It’s a challenging week on the road for the Hornets, who also visit Union (11-4) on Tuesday. The pick: BTW 68, Broken Arrow 63.

Edison (12-2) at Central (10-4), Friday: The only meeting between these state tournament contenders this season. The pick: Edison 61, Central 60.

Mr. Inside/Mr. Outside update

Voting

Mr. Inside: 1. Nehemiah Boykins, Union; 2. Caden Fry, Owasso; 3. Brayshawn Hubbard-Finch, Memorial; 4. Tojuan Pryor, Webster; 5. Xavier Lucas, East Central.

Mr. Outside: 1. Will McGuire, East Central; 2. Marcal Johnson, Rogers; 3. Kavon Key, Memorial; 4. Marlo Fox, Sand Springs; 5. Demitrius Neal, Hale.



Last week’s notable performance

Caden Hale, Metro Christian (Mr. Outside): The 6-1 senior was named the inaugural Rogers Invitational’s MVP. Scored 28 points in the semifinals against Rogers and 24 against OKC Star Spencer in the title game. The three-year starter averages 20 points.

Player to watch this week

Brock Davis, Holland Hall (Mr. Inside): The 6-6 senior is averaging 18 points, 12 rebounds, five blocks and five assists for the 4A No. 4 Dutch (13-1), who host rival Cascia Hall on Tuesday before going on a Texas weekend road swing to former Southwest Preparatory Conference opponents Dallas Episcopal and Fort Worth All Saints.

News and notes

Coaching in pain

Metro Christian coach Bryon Flam’s said his children knew something was wrong when “I didn’t celebrate like I normally would” after a semifinal victory over host Rogers on Friday in the Rogers Invitational.

“I was in so much pain I could hardly wait to get home,” said Flam, who was experiencing his fifth kidney stone, but his first during a game.

Flam was feeling better Saturday and able to coach the 4A No. 12 Patriots to an 80-70 win over 3A No. 3 OKC Star Spencer in the final. Ian Sluice scored 31 and Caden Hale 24 to lead Metro.

Metro avenged a loss to 5A No. 10 Rogers in the Cleveland Tournament final last month.

“We played more together as a team in this tournament,” Flam said. “They play for each other. We have a great group of guys and they have bought into playing defense. This is the toughest (regular-season) tournament we’ve played since I’ve been coaching here.”

Strong leadership key for Jenks

Jenks has a 12-game winning streak and has moved up to No. 2 in 6A after a 65-44 victory over Union in the Jenks/Union Invitational final Saturday.

“I love that our team is able to withstand a run and answer,” Jenks coach Clay Martin said. “This is probably our best student-led team since ‘09 (state runner-up) with (Bryson) Pope and (Alex) Ewings. We have a ton of student leaders. Our coaches don’t have to get involved as much as usual. Our student leadership with Trendon Tisdale and Ike Houston has just been phenomenal.”

Another senior, Anfernee Nelson, was the tournament MVP and is the World’s Bill Knight player of the week.

“He’s playing at such a high level right now at both ends,” Martin said. “What’s so impressive is he’s scoring the ball really well, but he’s also covering the opponent’s best scorer most of the time and not a lot of guys can do that. He’s had a good last four weeks.”

Eagles soar at Port City

Fifth-ranked 5A Edison defeated 5A No. 9 Tahlequah 72-68 in the 54th annual Port City Classic final Saturday at Catoosa. Eagles senior forward Mason Alexander was named the tournament’s most valuable player.

“Mason is becoming an excellent passer,” Edison coach Michael Parish said. “A big difference for him this year is how he is reading the floor. He’s getting double and triple teamed inside and that is putting his passing skills in play, setting up his teammates.

“Mason was the MVP, but we got contributions from a lot of players. Brandon Stuart did a good job making free throws in the fourth quarter of all the games. We had a good weekend.”

Braves persevere

Third-ranked 4A Central turned a week that could have potentially ended at 0-4 into 2-2 with narrow victories over 5A No. 8 East Central and 6A No. 16 OKC Northwest in the Jenks/Union Invitational. Central trailed for most of a 61-55 win over East Central and blew an 11-point lead in the fourth quarter before rallying against Northwest.

“The basketball gods have got to be on our side right now because the last two games we didn’t deserve to win,” Central coach Eli K. Brown III said. “We played well defensively (Saturday), we just didn’t generate a lot of offense. We just found a way to win an ugly game. This was a type of game you’ll play in the state tournament, we hope that will help aid us in that fight. I love the way we found a way to win.

“We’re playing seven games in 10 days and they’re not easy games. Our kids are kind of looking ahead, it’s hard to keep them focused on what’s right ahead of them and not 3-4-5 games down the road. This was a tough four games.”

Quotable

East Central coach Nate West after his team’s 54-53 comeback win over Trinity Christian Cedar Hill (Texas) in the Jenks/Union seventh-place game Saturday: “They scratched and clawed — our kids were beyond tough.”

Rankings

OSSAArankings.com coaches’ polls (as of Jan. 27), first-place votes in parentheses, record as of Jan. 26, followed by voting points.

Class 6A

1. Southmoore (10) 12-2, 530; 2. Jenks (6) 13-1, 529; 3. B.T. Washington (6) 9-5, 502; 4. Lawton (6) 13-2, 501; 5. Midwest City (3) 13-2, 498; 6. Edmond Memorial 13-3, 477; 7. Sand Springs 12-2, 477; 8. Union 11-4, 389; 9. Broken Arrow 13-2, 384; 10. Edmond North 13-4, 344; 11. Norman North 12-4, 311; 12. Putnam North 11-5, 305; 13. Putnam City 9-5, 240; 14. Putnam West 8-9, 219; 15. Edmond Santa Fe 9-7, 177.

Class 5A

1. Del City (28) 13-1, 560; 2. Memorial (2) 15-3, 534; 3. Shawnee 12-3, 481; 4. MWC Carl Albert 9-6, 465; 5, Edison 12-2, 463; 6. Collinsville 10 3, 434; 7. Lawton MacArthur 11-5, 386; 8. East Central 10-6, 381; 9. Tahlequah 11-5, 359; 10. Rogers 9-6, 321; 11. Guthrie 10-5, 293; 12. Pryor 10-6, 263; 14. Ardmore 7-6, 216. 15. Piedmont 7-8, 205.

Class 4A

1. Kingfisher (57) 16-0, 1,100; 2. OKC Heritage Hall (2) 11-4, 1,019; 3. Central 10-4, 960; 4. Holland Hall 13-1, 932; 5. Webster 13-4, 864; 6. Ada 12-4, 791; 7. OKC Marshall 13-4, 640; 8. Broken Bow 11-4, 613; 9. Bethany 11-4, 548; 10. Tuttle 12-4, 516; 11. Metro Christian 11-3, 498; 12. fort Gibson 12-3, 449; 13. Classen SAS 10-7, 441; 14. Hilldale 13-4, 356; 15. Clinton 13-4, 305.

Class 3A

1. OKC Millwood (31) 12-7, 857; 2. Roland (5) 14-2, 750; 3. OKC Star Spencer (4) 10-4, 704; 4. Beggs (5) 14-1, 703; 5. Crossings Christian (3) 14-3, 650; 6. Okla. Christian School 12-3, 614; 7. Perry 12-4, 613; 8. Adair 11-3, 554; 9. Community Christian 14-3, 520; 10. Tahlequah Sequoyah 13-5, 507; 11. Hugo 10-5, 479; 12, Riverside 14-5, 473; 13, Hennessey 12-2, 428; 14. Eufaula 10-3, 367; 15. Purcell 12-4, 300.

Class 2A

1. Okla. Union (40) 15-1, 1,385; 2. Dale (10) 13-5, 1,257; 3. Cashion (12) 13-1, 1,183; 4. Howe 18-2, 1,170; 5. Rejoice Christian (10) 10-5, 1,151; 6. Minco (3) 14-3, 1,012; 7. Okemah (1) 13-3, 974; 8. Vanoss 16-3, 914; 9. Pawnee (2) 15-0, 901; 10. Hooker 16-1, 893; 11. Canadian 12-1, 734; 12. Caddo 15-1, 665; 13. Talihina 11-4, 615; 14. Haskell 12-2, 578; 15. Wewoka 13-4, 464.

Class A

1. Cyril (48) 18-1, 1,179; 2. Calumet (13) 19-1, 1,091; 3. Fort Cobb-Broxton 18-2, 1,075; 4. Garber (4) 15-4, 950; 5. Velma-Alma (1) 16-2, 907; 6, Hydro-Eakly 18-3, 783; 7, Vici 17-3, 744; 8. Kiowa 16-4, 728; 9. Arapaho-Butler 17-3, 720; 10. Stuart 16-4, 574; 11. Roff 18-4, 531; 12. Ripley 15-4, 497; 13. Regent Prep 10-5, 456; 14. Fox 19-0, 412; 15. Davenport 13-4, 401.

Class B

1. Duke (29) 18-3, 999; 2. Paden (13) 19-1, 965; 3. Leedey (10) 19-1, 924; 4. Braggs (2) 19-0, 836; 5. Varnum (3) 21-1, 828; 6. Whitesboro (1) 18-2, 748; 7. Tyrone 15-3, 566; 8. Hammon 16-4, 562; 9. Butner 17-1, 555; 10. Burlington 14-5, 515; 11. Big Pasture 18-3, 506; 12. Kinta 14-5, 437; 13. Lomega 14-7, 404; 14. Battiest 15-7, 329; 15. Moyers 17-5, 289.