SKIATOOK — Playing good defense is one of the things that sparks the Sapulpa girls’ basketball engine.
“When we get stops and push the ball in transition, we’re really good,” junior forward Temira Poindexter said.
It showed Friday as the Chieftains unraveled Pryor’s Class 5A No. 12 Tigers in the second and third quarters and coasted to a 65-27 win in the semifinals of the Skiatook Invitational.
Poindexter scored 22 points and senior forward Ray Osborn added 15 as the explosive Chieftains (6-2) advanced to play defending tournament champion Mustang in the final at 7 p.m. Saturday. The 6A No. 14 Broncos (8-5) outlasted 5A No. 19 Bishop Kelley 43-32 in the other semifinal.
“I feel like it’s our defense that really gets us going good,” Osborn said. “We go into a (man-to-man) or a press and it gets us hyped and energetic.”
Leading 19-10 in the second quarter, the Chieftains ended the half on a 15-4 run and led 34-14.
In the third quarter, Sapulpa jumped into a halfcourt press and ran off the first eight points, including six by Osborn, who had eight in the quarter.
“We got steals off the press and got (Pryor) frustrated and just went up from there,” Osborn said.
Poindexter, a standout 6-foot-1 post player, scored several times in transition. She’s running the floor more this year, she said, because she’s allowed more freedom.
Coach Darlean Calip said Poindexter and Osborn showed the way as the Chieftains played for the second straight game without injured freshman point guard Stailee Heard.
“I felt they both responded like the leaders they are for our team,” Calip said. “When they’re rolling, the team seems to go with them.”
Calip said Heard’s ankle injury is not a “long-term” situation but that she likely will be held out of the championship game.
Mustang 43 Bishop Kelley 32
Talia Pogi and Jordyn Rollins scored 14 and 13 points, respectively, to pace the Broncos, who defeated Muskogee in the first round.
Leah Ames scored 10 points and Meaghan Cyr added nine for the Comets (2-9), who will play Pryor at 4 p.m. Saturday for third place.
Mustang 43, Bishop Kelley 32
Mustang 9 13 13 8 — 43
Bishop Kelley 2 6 14 10 — 32
Mustang: Talia Pogi 14, Jordyn Rollins 13, Kyra Misuraca 8, Jaki Rollins 3, Kate Niehues 3, Lunden Foreman 2
Bishop Kelley: Leah Ames 10, Meaghan Cyr 9, Abby Arp 6, Brooke Niver 6, Nicole Holdgrafer 1
Sapulpa 65, Pryor 27
Pryor 7 7 3 10 — 27
Sapulpa 15 19 20 11 — 65
Pryor: Madison Bradshaw 5, Brooke Miller 5, Rylie Looney 4, Madison Burroughs 3, Rhett Looney 2, Gracyn Rains 2, Aurana Daily 2, Emilee Rhymer 2, Kayley Alt 2.
Sapulpa: Temira Poindexter 22, Ray Osborn 15, Alexis Lewis 12, Madison Smith 7, Stormie Ramsey 2, Kassidy Esch 2, Emmie Osborn 2, Jaselyn Rossman 2, Zoey Mason 1.