MHS 43, Sapulpa 36
During the first quarter, the Lady Roughers couldn’t get out of their own way, committing nine turnovers and six fouls and falling behind 13-5 to the Lady Chieftains at the end of the period.
However, Muskogee, 13-3 and No. 6 in Class 6A, picked up its defensive intensity, holding Sapulpa to a free throw in the second quarter, cutting the deficit to two at halftime, 14-12, then pulled away in the second half for the win.
We came out the same old lackadaisical way that we had been doing the last two out of four games,” said Muskogee coach Doyle Rowland. “But I told the girls that Darlean Calip is a heck of a coach and she expected us to come out like a house on fire because that’s the way we did up there.
“I wasn’t really upset because I wanted to make sure my defense was working and kept us in the game.”
The Lady Roughers turned the ball over only three times in each of the middle two quarters and grabbed a 28-22 advantage with one quarter remaining. With 2:06 left in the fourth quarter, Muskogee had a 41-29 lead and only one turnover for the period, but committed five turnovers the rest of the way, allowing the No. 11 Lady Chieftains (11-7) to creep within seven, 41-34, with 34.7 seconds left.
Muskogee’s Aaliyah Wilson had a double-double (18 points, 10 rebounds), both game-highs. At halftime, Wilson knew what had to be done to pull out the win
“I guess we came out not focused and not prepared,” she said. “We knew they were coming and weren’t going to back down. We had to slow them down, play our game and show them what they were going to get the rest of the night.”
Muskogee is at Sand Springs on Tuesday with the girls’ game tipping off at 6 p.m. followed by the boys game.