The Moore American

February 26, 2014

Postseason tips-off Thursday

By Michael Kinney
The Moore American

MOORE — The regular season for high school basketball came to an end last week.

The Southmoore girls came close to upsetting the Midwest City Friday behind Serithia Hawkins who poured in 30 points. But they fell short to No. 2 Midwest City 69-64.

“It was a tough loss on Friday,” Southmoore coach Britney Kannady-Sayes said. “But I think the things we were able to learn from that loss will help us going into the playoffs.”

As it heads into the postseason, Southmoore has won only won game since Hawkins returned to the lineup. The Lady SaberCats kick off the postseason by taking on Norman High at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Edmond Santa Fe.

Southmoore and Norman have split a pair of games in the regular season. But SMH is still trying to find the form they had when they started season 8-0 and before Hawkins went down with her injury.

“These days of practice will be key,” Kannady-Sayes said. “I think we’re a lot closer than what a lot of people think. And maybe even closer than we thought we were.”

The Southmoore boys also dropped their regular season finale to the Bombers 64-55. The Cats scored only 12 points in the first half before mounting a rally in the second half. But it wasn’t enough to take down the No. 2 team in 6A.

“We had a bad first half,” SMH coach Wes Brown said. “We couldn’t score. Then in the second half, we were just a different team. Made a 16-8 run at to get back into the game. Played them nip and tuck the rest of the way.”

Justin Bean paced Southmoore with 18 points. It will play Lawton in the Midwest City regional Friday. A win could earn the Cats another rematch with the Bombers for a regional title.

“That would be huge,” Bean said. “We’ve faced them two times. Been pretty close games. I think if we played them again, we could go in there with a lot of intensity and hopefully pull of a win.”

Westmoore dropped an overtime thriller to Edmond Memorial Friday. After holding a lead much of the season half, the Jags watched the Bulldogs outscore them 18-15 in the fourth and 13-6 in OT to come away with a 70-63 win.

“We really competed hard on Friday,” coach Scott Hodges said. “I was really proud of our guys for how they prepared, focused, and played. We do a few things better late in the game and it’s a different outcome.”

Tripp Fuller paced WM with 15. Westmoore will travel to Mustang, where they’ll meet Norman North at 6:30 p.m. Friday, while Mustang will play host to Putnam City.

“They are probably the best offensive team we’ve played all year,” Hodges said of North. “They can really score points in bunches. We will have to do a good job defensively and be very sound on the offensive end and take good shots. One thing we always talk about is take one game at a time and have confidence in your abilities. Norman North is a really good team, but we have confidence that we can go over there and advance to Area.”

The Westmoore girls earned another big win Friday by taking down No. 14 Edmond Memorial 47-42. Bri Haun, Sydney Chastain and Ashley Gomez each posted 13 points in the win as they swept the Bulldogs on the season.

“Overall, we played well,” Westmoore coach Andrea Guziec said. “We started five of our six seniors and they got us off to a good start behind the great shooting of Bri Haun.”

The Jags will meet Yukon in the Choctaw regional Thursday.

“We played Yukon in the finals of the Newcastle tournament and lost by five,” Guziec said. “It was by far not our best game, and we were still in it till the end. We played without Callie Palmer who will help us with Yukon’s post players. I feel very good about our chances against Yukon on Thursday.”

The top two teams from each regional will advance to the area tournament.

However, all first round games are a win-or go home situation.

The Moore boys (13-8) landed in the same region as No. 1 PC West (19-2), If the Lions defeat Edmond North (8-12) Friday, they will be on a collision course to take on PCW with a region title on the line at 7 p.m. Saturday. But first they have to deal with the Huskies.

The Moore girls will travel to Midwest City to meet the host team.