Area ballers join forces on hardwood
CACHE As the Southwest Oklahoma All-Stars hit the hardwood one final time at Cache High School on Tuesday evening, some friendly jabs between the refs and coaches were made helping fans in attendance reminisce of the glorious days this past season.
The All-Stars, joining forces from different schools, also made us reminisce of a stellar 2017-18 season by putting on a show in a quintet of games.
In the most thrilling game of the day that saw 39 combined 3-pointers made, the Small School West All-Star boys squeaked by the Small School West All-Stars, 90-87.
In the Small School girls game, the West All-Stars routed the East All-Stars, 47-23 behind a second half flurry from Navajo's Emmy Cobb.
In the Middle School game, the three musketeers All State player Toby Denny, Michael Bailey and Caleb Hutson from Chattanooga erupted late in the second half to lift the West All-Stars over the East, 59-58.
In the Large School girls game, the West All-Stars breezed by the East, 45-30, as a host of Eisenhower Eagles Jaeda Reed, Delicia Brown, Gena Rogers and Co. showcased their talent while and the trio of Lady Bulldogs Ashley Turner, Sydney Bolin and Kaylie Walker helped out, playing on their home court in Cache one final time.
In the Large School boys game, the dunk fest began as Eisenhower's RJ Fisher slammed home a pair while Emajhawun Kelly added 19 points to help the West All-Stars rout the East, 86-45.
Check out tomorrow's edition of The Constitution for a follow-up story on hoops All-Stars from the middle boys game and the two large school games played late Tuesday night.
West 90, East 87
Just four minutes into the first game of the afternoon, East All-Star Kesston Mowdy of Fort Cobb-Broxton who helped lead the Mustangs to the Class A State championship and a four-peat earlier this spring went down with a gruesome ankle injury under the hoop.
While David Derrico of Sterling checked into the game marking the only substitution on a now empty East bench, two West All-Stars, Hayden Brown of Duke and Dmarcus Crabtree of Geronimo went over to help carry the limping Mowdy out of the gym on their shoulders.
"It really sucks for a pickup game," Brown said. "Injuries suck, but it's part of the game."
Brown went on to score 11 for the West, including three 3-pointers, while Crabtree exploded for 22 points to help propel the West to a 90-87 win over the East in the most trigger-happy perimeter shooting game of the day.
The West canned 13 of its 21 3-pointers in the second half, spurred by eight treys from Christian Adair from Indiahoma, who scored 25 points.
The Indiahoma marksman sank multiple treys from 25-plus feet and was on fire from deep which is why Brown was glad Adair was finally on his team after a trio of tight games this season.
"Everybody knows we don't get along much because we're very, very competitive," Brown said. "So it was nice for us all to lay back and just play. I'm going to miss this a lot. It was great to come out and play again."
The East had a late rally as Kaden Reynolds of Gracemont, who scored 22 points, drilled a corner 3-ball with four seconds left to make it 89-87. His full court heave to tie went off the back of the rim, drawing oohs and aahs from the players.
The East, spurred by 22 points from David Derrico (Sterling), 15 points from Chance Smith (Sterling), 18 from Dalton Groves (Big Pasture) and 10 from Jayce Clem (Big Pasture), played with five players the rest of the game.
"No timeouts," West coach Zac Gipson (Indiahoma) laughed while telling East coach Trent Parrish (Sterling).
Smith missed a breakaway dunk and trotted back saying, 'I'm getting old.'
"It was cool playing other towns," Smith said. "And it was nice not having to guard someone."
"Just the brotherhood," his Sterling teammate, Derrico said of what they'll miss the most. "What we've been able to share together, you can't take that away."
Brown suffered a bitter end to his high school career as Duke lost on a controversial blarge call to defending champ Calumet in the State B tournament quarterfinals.
"I know it was heartbreaking, especially as a senior, to go out that way, but those guys are bound and determined," Brown said. "They know it wasn't right just like everybody else who was there."
Brown won't be around next year, but believes the Tigers, who return everyone but Brown, will reach the next step.
"I really think they got it next year," Brown said. "The only thing that will stop them is themselves. They could go all the way."