D’Andre Titsworth provide a fourth-quarter spark for Muskogee, but it wasn’t quite enough as the Roughers fell just short in an upset bid, losing to the Class 6A No.10-ranked Owasso Rams 65-60 Tuesday night at Ron D. Milam Gymnasium.
The Roughers did just about everything right. They played great defense forcing 19 Owasso turnovers. They shot 44 percent from the field, and free throws, which have been a problem in the past, were solid, connecting on 10 of 14 for the game. They got Owasso’s big 6-7 center Caden Fry in foul trouble, forcing him to the bench for most of the third quarter.
But it was the final three minutes of the game that made the difference as the Rams outscored Muskogee 6-3 to cushion their tenuous two-point lead at the time.
The Roughers had their chances down the stretch as quick hands forced several Owasso turnovers but, invariably, the Roughers would get ahead of themselves and turn the ball right back over.
And when E.J. Lewis hit the front end of a one-and-one with 5.9 seconds left, that iced the victory for the Rams who were regrouping after a pair of losses in last week’s Tournament of Champions to Class 5A No. 1 ranked Memorial and Class 6A No.1 ranked Jenks.
“It was absolutely a tough loss,” said Rougher coach Lynwood Wade.
“Our guys played extremely hard and stuck to the game plan, but once we get a turnover we’ve got to learn to slow down and take advantage. And that was the only facet I think we didn’t do a good job with tonight.”
The game was nip-and-tuck through the 1 1/2 quarters until the Rams (6-3) went on a 6-0 spurt to open an eight-point lead.
And even though the Roughers (2-4) got to within two points late in the game, they were never able to regain the lead.
Javontae “Soup” Campbell came off the bench mid-way through the first quarter and ended up leading the Roughers with a game-high 22 points while Titsworth had 20 including five from beyond the arc. Fry paced Owasso with 18 points and Brandon Mann added 12 points.
Girls: Owasso 50, Muskogee 40
Like the boys, the girls also had their chances at pulling in a victory.
After a horrendous first quarter that saw Muskogee (1-5) fall behind 18-4, Akira Eubanks led a second quarter comeback with three treys and the Lady Roughers shutout Owasso 13-0 over the final 3:57 of the quarter to trail by only six at halftime 25-19.
But with a decided height advantage, the Lady Rams were able to get better looks and ended up shooting 61 percent from the field (19-of-31) while Muskogee hit on just 12-of-38 for 31 percent.
“Once we finally got some shots to start falling, it sort of energized our defense and we were able to make a run,” said Lady Rougher coach Jeremy Ford.
“It’s a little frustrating because I feel like we’re right on the cusp of being to win some of these games, but we’ve just got to dig deeper and find a way to close out these kinds of games.”
Junior Bianca McVay led the Rougher scoring with 18 points on the night while Seldon Stover paced the Lady Rams (4-5) with 17 points.