By JESSICA CRAWFORD
Friday was a big day for area high school basketball. After Mother Nature decided teams should be awarded another day to practice, both Texhoma teams advanced in the Class A Area Tourney with the Lady Red Devils winning over Cashion 51-28 and Texhoma boys topping Garber 62-58. Hookerâ€™s boys will advance with one more shot at a title after a loss to Pawnee, 65-54, and the Lady Bulldogs end their season following a loss to Rejoice Christian, 44-39. Both Guymon Tigers teams will be heading home after the girls losing to MacArthur, 50-28. Guymonâ€™s boys concluded their season with a loss to Bishop McGuinness, 71-28.
Texhoma Lady Red Devils Head Coach Britton Gabriele said he couldnâ€™t have been more proud of his girls. Getting this far in the area tourney has not happened for the Lady Red Devils in some time.
â€śIt was a big game for us,â€ť Gabriele said. â€śWinning first round of the area tournament is something that hasnâ€™t been done in the program for quite some time, so we are really excited about that.
â€śOne of the things that stood out tonight was our defense,â€ť he continued. â€śWe were able to hold them to four points in the second quarter and hold them to three points in the third quarter. So, we played excellent defense today. Offensively, we were able to get clicking and we were able to play much better offense in second half than the first off and that made a big difference in the ballgame.â€ť
After becoming acclimated to new surroundings, Gabriele said the Lady Red Devils hit a stride that simply could not be stopped.
â€śWe had a lot of girls step up,â€ť he said. â€śWe had a bit of a rocky start at the beginning because it is a new court and a different atmosphere for the girls - it is the first time that they had ever been here.â€ť
Top scorers adding to the win over 51-28 Cashion win over Cashion were Braelyn Beattie with 15 points, Tabra Elliot with 12 and Sarah Murphy with eight.
The girls will take on Seiling in the next round of Class A Area Tournament at 1:30 today in Enid.
Texhoma Boys Head Coach Greg Higgins said although the 62-58 win against Garber was close, the Red Devils dominated the majority of the contest.
â€śI think we were up 13 or 15 at the second half,â€ť Higgins said. â€śThen they made a run in the third quarter, they got within three points of us - they didnâ€™t get ahead of us. I believe we had the lead most of the time.â€ť
Of the 3 p.m. battle for the Area Title against Laverne today, Higgins said the boys are looking to even the score.
â€śThis will be the fourth time we played them,â€ť he said. â€śWe beat them once at our place, they beat us at our place and then they beat us for third place at the Seiling Tournament in January. So, they beat us twice, we beat them once.â€ť
With 31 points scored equally in both halves of the game, Higgins said the boys played a consistent game.
Nathan Knitig led the Red Devils with 20 points, Bryson Beattie had 17 to his credit and Dylan Koehn had 10 for 10 in the fourth quarter at the free throw line.
Hookerâ€™s Lady Bulldogs may have ended their season Friday, but Coach Ray Kennedy said the girls should be proud of playing one tough season.
â€śWe had a lot of adversity,â€ť Kennedy said. â€śWe had some injuries; Kyra Cathcart got hurt about a month ago, so we lost her. Tonight, Mariana Cervantes, after the second half started, she got elbowed in the eye and loses her contact, so we lost her for the rest of the game - she couldnâ€™t see, and she had a big goose egg under her eye. She has stepped up quite a bit with Kyra being out. She stepped up and did a lot of scoring for us.
â€śDana Jimenez got hurt at the very end of the ballgame,â€ť he added. â€śIt is kind of the story of the whole year, I think they tried hard and we had a good year an had some good ballgames - we ended up winning 16 games this season.â€ť
Top scorers for the Lady Bulldogs were Shania Miller and Jade Cathcart with 11, and Mariana Cervantes with six, before her injury in the beginning of the second half.
Bulldogs Head Coach Chad Hussey said his boys had an intense game, although they lost to Pawnee 50-49 in overtime. About todayâ€™s contest with Pioneer at 8 p.m. in Enid, Hussey said a few things will need to improve, but, he added, the Bulldogs should not be counted out just yet.
â€śWe played a really good ballgame tonight and we struggled with the press,â€ť Hussey said. â€śWe have to step up and knock down some shots - we didnâ€™t hit very good shots in the first quarter.â€ť
Top scorers for the Bulldogs were Joe Bean with 19 points and Chad Kennedy with 10.
Guymon Tigers Head Coach Troy Cox said the 71-28 loss to Bishop McGuinness was disappointing, but he sees good things ahead for his Tigers.
â€śThe final score was 71-28 - we didnâ€™t play well at all,â€ť Cox said. â€śWe had 24 turnovers and thatâ€™s hard to overcome versus a mediocre team, let alone versus the No.1 team.
â€śCarson Kane led us with eight points,â€ť he added proudly. â€śI only traveled with eight (players) and everyone played.â€ť
Ultimately, Cox was proud of what the boys accomplished this year.
â€śWe had a tough season - not at all what I had hoped for, but itâ€™s a new system and the kids are learning new things,â€ť he said. â€śThat takes time. Itâ€™s a long process. Iâ€™m looking forward to working with my younger group of kids - they have some potential.â€ť
Lady Tigers Head Coach Amanda Boggs echoed Coxâ€™s sentiments. She was hoping her girls would go further in the tournament, but is very proud of a season very well played.
â€śComing off a six-hour bus trip, it is hard to get your legs back underneath you,â€ť she said. â€śWe got behind in the first quarter after a couple of quick threes and never caught back up. The girls never gave up and kept playing the whole game.
â€śI am proud of the way my girls played all year, we had our ups and downs, but worked through them,â€ť she said. â€śThey have had a year in the program to start to see what I expect. I canâ€™t wait for the years to come.â€ťView more articles in: