MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

March 2, 2014

Union sends Muskogee to consolation matchup

By Patrick Kays
Phoenix Correspondent

— TULSA — The Muskogee Roughers struggled to get things going against the Union Redskins on Saturday night.

Then when they did, a super-sized defense and strong shooters snuffed the Roughers out as they absorbed a 66-51 loss in a Class 6A regional championship.

The Redskins (24-2) hit the Roughers (12-12)  hard with their duo of senior duo Shawn Olden and Jeff Mead, who combined for 40 points. Olden lead Union with 24 and Mead had 16.

Olden and Mead scored all the points in an early run that put the Redskins up 9-0. That streak was ended by Tavian Davis’ bucket at the 4:40 mark in the first quarter Davis’ score started the Roughers on a 15-5 run giving Muskogee their only lead at 15-14.

“Tavian came in with a lot of energy for us off the bench. Got us going at times,” said Roughers coach Josh Berry. “He’s going to be a great player for us in the future and the present.”

The lead would be lost soon after, when Unions Alex Barton’s three-point play started them on a 21-3 run that involved eight Rougher turnovers and made it a 35-19 game at the half.

“We had too many turnovers, too many missed opportunities, too many missed free throws,” said Berry. “They just played better than us tonight.”

There’s still a present for MHS. They’ll face Putnam City North, a 58-53 loser to Edmond Memorial on Friday in an East Area consolation game and would need to win there and again on Saturday to find its way to the state tournament for the first time in four seasons. Time and date won’t be known for sure until today.

The Roughers would challenge again in the third when Tramal Ivy and Anthony King doing the only scoring in a 10-0 run that made it a 39-31 game. But that would be the closest the Roughers would get as Olden and company would score 19 points in the fouth, sending them to the Area championship next week against Edmond Memorial.

King led the Roughers in scoring with 14. Davis finished with 12 and Ivy had 9.

Abel Rodriguez was the only other Union player to score in double digits as he finished with 10.

It marked the third win in as many meetings for the Redskins against the Roughers.