MOORE — Moore had them right where it wanted. Facing No. 1 Edmond Memorial (6A) in the season opener, the Lions had the states top ranked team on the ropes and ready to deliver the knockout blow.
However, that blow never came and Moore fell 60-50 to the Bulldogs at Moore High Tuesday. But even in the loss, coach Aaron Howell said he learned a lot about his team.
“It’s probably the proudest I’ve been of a Moore team,” Howell said. “These guys came out. They stayed together. You see we go 10-12 deep. I can play anybody. I think the boys matured over the past couple of months and accepted their roles. That’s the main thing, sticking together.”
Early in the fourth quarter, the Lions found themselves down by eight points. But they went on a 8-2 run to close the gap 52-50. Despite having momentum on its side, Moore didn’t score again in the final three minutes.
“I don’t know what the problem was,” Howell said. “If I did I would have fixed it quick. The second half we just couldn’t get the ball in the hole like we did in the first half. The ball has to go in the hole for you to win and we couldn’t get it done. They are very disappointed. They know that was their game. They just couldn’t get the ball to go in the hole.”
The Bulldogs were led by Shaquille Morris. The 6-foot-8 forward had a game high 25 points. Jordan Woodward added 11 before fouling out in the fourth.
Moore got a balanced attack with three players in double figure scoring. Sophomore Jaylon Wilson scored 12 points while seniors Maurice Davenport and Dorian Gigger chipped in with 10 each.
“I think we played pretty good, but it was mainly in the second half when we couldn’t score,” Gigger said. “We should have played a lot better on defense. On Shaq, we didn’t play good enough defense. That’s mainly my fault I feel like.”