MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Prep Sports

January 27, 2013

Oktaha rallies late to down Checotah in Mounds tourney

MOUNDS – Oktaha’s Dustin Leach and Devon Fry kept the fans on the edge of their seats in the Mounds Tournament boys championship game at Mounds High School’s Carter Field House on Saturday night.

Leach’s 11 fourth-quarter points, including a one-handed layup with 23.6 seconds left in the game, and Fry’s two free throws with 11.6 seconds left pushed the Tigers to the 66-63 victory against the Checotah Wildcats.

Checotah led by as much as eight points (58-50) in the fourth quarter after two free throws by DeShawn Jackson with 4:49 left in the game. The Wildcats then led 62-55 with 1:32 remaining.

Leach went to work, scoring nine of his points in final 92 seconds. His layup gave the Tigers their first lead of the second half.

“Dustin’s really hard to defend one-on-one and he makes good decisions with the ball,” Oktaha coach Jim Glover said. “He hit some big shots. When he dumped the ball down to Fry and Devon put it in the hole, that was huge for us.”

Leach finished with a game-high 30 points.

“Our big boy hit those free throws and that’s what really won the game for us,” Leach said. “It was a group effort. It just wasn’t one person.”

Ranked No. 4 in the Class 2A poll, the Tigers improved to 16-2.

Blake Pittman added 11 points and Caleb Shoemake grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds.

It was a heart-breaking loss for the Wildcats (10-7), who led 43-32 at halftime.

“They are ranked where they are for a reason,” Checotah coach Jason Dowdy said. “They did a good job in the second half.

“I’m proud of my guys. We won three games all last season and now we’ve had the opportunity to play in two tournament championships this season.”

Braylon Warrior led the Wildcats with 21 points. Jackson had 15 along with seven rebounds and Deshay Bear added 10.

In other games, Summit Christian beat Haskell 67-51 for the consolation championship as Michael Love scored 18 and Lane Young added 11.

Porter lost 63-53 to Glenpool for third place despite Jacob Richardson’s 27 points. Marquis Fowler led Glenpool with 26.

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