EDMOND -- Wes Brown was looking for fire. No matter what happened Friday when his Southmoore boys took on Lawton High in the Area tournament, he wanted to see that the team cared.

Brown got the fight he was looking for. However, it was the other parts of the game that led to Southmoore losing 67-55 to LHS at Edmond Memorial. The loss ended the Cats' season far short of their expected goal.

"It's a lot of sorrow we couldn't get this for the seniors," junior Brandon Lucas said. "Couldn't redeem ourselves from last year going to state. We really tried. Came out with intensity. They just hit a few more shots then we did and got a few more stops then we did."

Southmoore never pulled it together this year like they thought they would. By the end of the season, they looked like a completely different team than the one that went to the state tournament last season.

"I don't think we had a lot of communication," senior Austin Haywood said. "We had a lot of new players on the court this year."

On paper, the Wolverines were not be considered the better unit. But they did the three things a team has to do in order to advance in the playoffs -- Play defense, rebound and make free throws. Southmoore was unable to do any of those well in their last two outings.

"We just weren't able to hit shots down the stretch," junior Kendal Thompson said. "We played well, hard and hustled. Just had to hit shots. That's all it came down to."

Craig Foster for Lawton High controlled the tempo from the outset. He was able to drive to the basket whenever he wanted or hit jumpers around the perimeter.

The Wolverines led 18-10 after one quarter.

The Cats continually hurt themselves early by missing layups and shots in the paint. It wasn't the way Brown had hoped his team would start.

Lawton pushed their lead to 11 in the second quarter before Southmoore picked up their offense. Kody English came off the bench and helped the Cats close to within five points.

But a couple of turnovers and a few bad possessions later, LHS was back up by nine heading into halftime with a 34-25 advantage.

"We played hard," Brown said. "Missed a lot of easy shots in the first half. The score could have been close. It could have been tied or better."

The Cats cranked it up in spurts during the third period. Haywood got loose in the middle while Lucas charged into the lane for layups.

But just as soon as Southmoore looked like it was ready to make a run, Lawton came up with a 3-pointer or crucial offensive rebound and putback.

The SaberCats didn't help their cause by atrocious free throw shooting. In the third quarter alone they missed five shots from the foul line. All of this led to the Wolverines taking a commanding 50-41 lead into the fourth.

With five minutes left on the clock and leading by 13 points, the Wolverines went into their version of four corners. The guards dribbled around for more than a minute before taking a shot.

Even when Southmoore was able to get a turnover, they just didn't have the shooting touch to make LHS pay.

Delvonte Pierre led Lawton with 22 points. Foster added 17.

Lucas posted 19 and Haywood chipped in with 10.

"There are very few positives," Lucas said. "It's always going to be a negative when you don't come out with the gold ball. That was our No. 1 goal coming into the season."

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