‘Holy cow, that game was unbelievable.’
First-year Claremore Lady Zebra coach Stephanie Shaw watched her team overcome adversity and fight with tenacity to pull off a 47-40 win over Coweta Friday night in the season opener.
“For a team that hasn’t been in this kind of environment this early in the season, and never give up, I’m proud of their effort,” Shaw said. “They stuck together and got a really huge win.”
Claremore junior point guard Kaleigh Cox played an integral role in leading the Lady Zebras to victory. Cox, who didn’t make her first field goal until the 6:09 mark of the third quarter, put the team on her shoulders and scored a game-high 23 points.
“Kaleigh’s our rock,” Shaw said. “She’s the one that sparks this team and her play in the fourth quarter was clutch.”
Though Cox’s driving layup put Claremore ahead 25-24 in the third quarter, it was the fourth quarter where the three-year starter rose to the occasion.
With Coweta carrying a 28-27 lead into the fourth quarter, Cox simply took over despite having four fouls.
Cox scored 16 of her game-high 23 points in the fourth quarter, including back-to-back layups in transition to tie the game at 31-31 with 5:57 remaining.
After Coweta got a basket from Haley Brewster to go up 33-31, Cox answered on the offensive end with a layup from the assist of senior forward Ashlynn Glenn to once again tie the game at 33-33.
Cox’s feisty defensive pressure on Coweta point guard Courtney Haas forced a turnover and the Claremore junior standout knocked down the 10-foot jumper to put the Lady Zebras up 35-33.
Both teams traded baskets until Glenn’s layup from Bailey Steckline put Claremore ahead for good at 39-37 with under three minutes remaining.
Claremore finished the fourth quarter on an 8-3 run with Cox scoring six of the Lady Zebras’ final eight points.
“Our defense got us going after halftime,” Cox said. “Our goal was to hold Coweta to 40 points and we did that.”
Shaw credited her team’s defensive prowess in the second half to Cox’s leadership.
“Defense is what is going to win us games,” Shaw said.
Freshman guard Monica Taylor scored eight points in her first varsity start, including a pair of three pointers in the first quarter.
Coweta, who made five treys in the first half, was led in scoring by Kaitlyn Norton with 16 points.
In the boys’ game, Coweta built a 16-0 lead in the first quarter and never looked back to thump the Zebras, 79-40.
Caleb Norris and Ty Gunter led the Tigers with 15 points each, while Jake Ross and Zach Norris added 10 apiece.
Coweta coasted to a 24-7 first quarter lead and went into halftime ahead 42-18.
Daniel Lauer paced Claremore’s offense with 13 points, while Brett Russell added eight before fouling out.
Cox explodes for 16 points in 4th quarter
‘Holy cow, that game was unbelievable.’
3A AREA PLAYOFFS: Verdigris battles Tahlequah Sequoyah in Checotah
Verdigris senior guard Caitlyn Hanslovan drained two key 3-pointers during Saturday’s Class 3A Regional Finals that provided a spark and a huge win over Vian.
Hanslovan, who is accustomed to winning state championships in soccer, will look to move the No. 3-ranked Lady Cardinals one step closer toward a berth in the 3A State Tournament at 6:30 p.m. on Friday in the area finals against Tahlequah Sequoyah at Checotah High School.
Catoosa HS set to host Class 6A Girls Area; 5A Boys Area tourneys
For high school basketball enthusiasts in Rogers County, Catoosa High School is the place to be on Thursday and Friday.
Catoosa High School will host the Class 6A Girls Area and Class 5A Boys Area over the two-day period.
Class 3A Regional Champions
It’s takes two to tango and the Verdigris basketball teams are dancing their way to the Class 3A Area Finals.
With a state tournament berth on the line Friday night, both Verdigris teams return to a familiar place on the road to state in Oklahoma City.
The Class 3A No. 3-ranked Lady Cardinals waltzed past Vian, 58-46 and the No. 4-ranked Cardinals decked Eufaula, 66-53 to cap off the regional championship night Saturday inside the Jack Collins Fieldhouse.
Claremore set to host 4A Area Basketball Tournament
Claremore High School will be a busy place Thursday through Saturday with several of the state’s top Class 4A basketball teams competing in the area tournament.
NBA CAPSULES: Duncan paces Spurs past Heat
Tim Duncan had 23 points and 11 rebounds, and the San Antonio Spurs never trailed against the Miami Heat, weathering a sluggish third quarter for an intense and emotional 111-87 victory Thursday.
MLB: Hill arrives at Red Sox camp following son's death
Red Sox pitcher Rich Hill starts spring training with a heavy heart.
Hill reported to Boston's camp on Thursday following the death of son Brooks, who was less than 2 months old when he died on Feb. 24.
Sports medicine pioneer Frank Jobe dies at 88
Dr. Frank Jobe, a pioneering orthopedic surgeon who was the first to perform an elbow procedure that became known as Tommy John surgery and saved the careers of countless major league pitchers, died Thursday. He was 88.
AP Source: 10-second rule withdrawn by committee
Round one of the pace-of-play debate goes to the proponents of fast football.
The NCAA football rules committee tabled a proposal Wednesday that would have penalized offenses for snapping the ball before 10 seconds had run off the 40-second play clock, The Associated Press has learned.
Florida OC Roper gets 3-year deal worth up to $2M
Florida offensive coordinator Kurt Roper can earn up to $2 million under a three-year contract he signed last month.
Texas A&M OL Matthews looks to continue family tradition in NFL
Texas A&M offensive tackle Jake Matthews will be the seventh member of his family to play in the NFL if he is drafted as expected in May.
He knows his football lineage doesn't hurt him, but hopes that his work as a four-year starter for the Aggies is what really wows the scouts.
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- 3A AREA PLAYOFFS: Verdigris battles Tahlequah Sequoyah in Checotah