TULSA — Tulsa Edison knew who “the man” was for Claremore. Still, they couldn’t do much to stop the Zebras 6-foot-7 silky smooth Layton Hartloff Thursday in the first round of the Bishop Kelley Invitational in Tulsa.
Hartloff scored Claremore’s first 9 points of the game, had 19 at the half and finished with 23 in the Zebras’ 66-62 win over the Eagles. Claremore (2-1) will now play at 9 p.m. Friday against the winner of Bishop Kelley and Tulsa Webster in the tournament semifinals.
Hartloff and his younger brother Caison combined for all of Claremore’s 12 first-quarter points. With little help from the rest of the Zebras offense, Edison was able to pull away to a 21-12 lead.
But to start the second quarter, more of a team effort allowed the Zebras to catch up and take a 27-26 lead on a Layton Hartloff 3-pointer with 4:20 left in the first half. A Hartloff dunk off an alley-oop pass from Bray Glenn made it 29-26 with 1:05 left in the half.
But Edison managed to pull ahead for a 30-29 halftime lead.
Claremore was playing catch-up again in the third. Five straight points by Matt Wofford tied it at 36 at the six minute mark. But once again, the Eagles pulled way for a 44-38 lead midway through the third. Claremore battled back again, and a Glenn trey cut the lead to 49-48 to end the third quarter.
Caison Hartloff opened the fourth with a bucket and a 50-49 Claremore lead, which would start a back-and-fourth final frame. Another Caison Hartloff trey gave the Zebras a 58-56 lead midway through the fourth. And then, with the teams tied at 60, Wofford came up big for Claremore as he hit two buckets for a 64-60 Claremore lead with 1:20 left in the game. There would be no more need for a comeback after that.
Caison Hartloff went the line with 10.7 seconds left, and hit both charity shots. Claremore led 66-62 and held on for the win.
Caison Hartloff finished with 13 points, none more important than the last two. Wofford had 15 points for Claremore.