Both the boys and girls basketball squads for the Zebras entered their home court looking to bounce back from their disappointing performances in last week’s Bishop Kelley Invitational.
The Zebras did just that on Tuesday night, with both teams picking up a victory against the Skiatook Bulldogs.
The Lady Zebras won a hard-fought battle in which they had to rally in the second half to secure a win over the Lady Bulldogs, and the boys team had their best performance of the season with a dominant outing from junior forward Caison Hartloff.
CLAREMORE 45, SKIATOOK 43 (G)
This game ultimately came down to which team wanted it more.
Claremore had a rough start to the game as it battled multiple turnovers in the first half and a solid performance from Skiatook’s senior point guard Rylee Massey, who was having an exceptional night shooting and distributing the ball.
The Lady Zebras entered the second half down by four points.
This is where the game flipped and the senior starters for Claremore would take over the remainder of the game.
Senior guard Cloe Denis shot lights out in the second half, accounting for three 3-pointers, while senior forwards Hailey Grant and Maddie Hardage dominated the paint.
Claremore stormed back to take a late lead in the fourth quarter, which resulted in the Lady Bulldogs to have to resort to fouling and hoping the Lady Zebras would miss their free throws.
But the exact opposite occurred, and Claremore would make the majority of its free throws to eventually win them the game.
CLAREMORE 61, SKIATOOK 46 (B)
This was the boys team’s best performance of the season so far with three players scoring in double-digits.
The Zebras showed no signs of slowing down on offense throughout the entire game, but struggles of rebounding and guarding the post kept the Bulldogs right behind them at halftime.
Skiatook’s senior center Dallin Anderson scored a team-high 17 points with only three of those coming from free throws.
The third quarter is where Claremore would run away with it by playing a near perfect quarter, scoring 26 points and holding the Bulldogs to only 9 points.
The Zebras went into the fourth quarter with an impressive 19-point lead and would take care of business to finish out the game, giving them a 15-point victory over Skiatook.
Michael Anderson and Nate Potts combined for 21 points with two 3-pointers each, and Caison Hartloff showed why he was the game’s most valuable player with 27 points while being a huge presence in every aspect of Tuesday night’s win over the Bulldogs.