Bartlesville senior point guard Paige Wilson came through in the ‘clutch’ for the Class 6A No. 3 Lady Bruins Friday night in the Port City Classic semifinals.
With an opportunity to face Class 6A No. 2 Bixby in the championship, Wilson tallied 10 of her 14 points in the second half to lift Bartlesville past Class 3A No. 5 Verdigris, 42-35.
The loss for Verdigris moved the Lady Cardinals into the third-place game against Cascia Hall Saturday afternoon.
Bartlesville, who defeated Claremore in the tournament opener, needed all four quarters to hold off the feisty Lady Cardinals.
Verdigris led 12-6 after the first quarter and 16-14 at halftime.
Bartlesville, however, outscored Verdigris, 18-12 in the third quarter to swing the momentum in its favor with a 32-28 lead.
Stacia Payne and Baileigh O’Dell keyed the Lady Cardinals’ first half scoring with seven points each. Courtney Risenhoover also contributed with two points.
Verdigris’s tenacity on defense in the first 16 minutes held Bartlesville’s Wilson to four points. The Lady Bruins, however, countered with 6-foot-1 sophomore post Hailey Tucker scoring seven points, including five in the second quarter.
Coming out after halftime, Caitlyn Hanslovan’s three-pointer with 6:46 left in the third quarter put Verdigris ahead 22-16.
A short-range jumper by Bartlesville’s Olivia Culver, however, narrowed the deficit to 22-21 with 3:58 remaining.
Bartlesville continued to add to its third quarter lead with Tucker’s three-pointer that put the Lady Bruins ahead 26-22 with 2:55 left in the third quarter.
O’Dell, on the ensuing possession, weaved her way through the Bartlesville defense with a layup and a pair of free throw conversions by Hanslovan knotted the game at 26-26.
Hanslovan’s layup over the outstretched arms of Tucker returned the lead to Verdigris at 28-26.
But, Bartlesville scored the next six points to close out the third quarter with a 32-28 lead.
Wilson wasted little time in stretching the Bartlesville lead to 35-28 with a wide-open three pointer at the start of the fourth quarter.
Hanslovan continued her hot streak at the free throw line with a pair of conversions to bring Verdigris within three at 35-32 with 3:51 remaining.
From that point on, though, Bartlesville would outscore Verdigris, 7-3.
Along with Wilson, Tucker tallied 12 points and Sierra Crow added seven to lead the Lady Bruins offense.
O’Dell scored 12 points and Hanslovan chipped in 11 to spark the Lady Cardinals. Payne also had nine points and Risenhoover finished with three.