MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Opinion

March 25, 2013

Congrats to state champs

— Congratulations are in order to the Fort Gibson High School girls’ basketball team, the Class 4A state champions.

The Lady Tigers won their second championship in three years by defeating Mount St. Mary 58-43 earlier this month.

It is the second basketball title for Fort Gibson and the sixth championship game appearance in eight seasons. The Lady Tigers won the title in 2011 after losing in the title game in 2006, 2007 and 2008. They dropped a heartbreaker in the finals a season ago before climbing to the top and claiming the gold ball again this year.

Despite just one loss, the team faced adversity throughout the season and the playoffs. In the area finals, a loss put the Lady Tigers on the brink of their season ending. They responded by winning the next night, and wouldn’t lose again.

In the title game, they trailed 25-19 at half before dominating the second half.

Coach Jerry Walker’s team has done it with grit and determination.

“We keep telling them, they’ve got to be the toughest team physically and mentally,” Walker told the Phoenix after the game. “We don’t have college coaches knocking at our doors. When we’re on our game, we’re outworking our opponent.”

Congratulations to Walker, his team and staff on a perfect season.

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