The Duncan Banner

December 26, 2012

Thunder sharing floor with Empire

Evan Grice
The Duncan Banner

DUNCAN — While the Chesapeake Energy Arena is home to the Western Conference champion Oklahoma City Thunder, it’ll be home for some other teams today at least for a couple of hours.

Empire and Wilson will renew their traditional matchup as the Bulldogs and Lady Bulldogs will look to get one more victory under their belts before 2012 comes to a close.

“Our guys love getting to play at an NBA arena, and that’s why we keep going back,” Empire coach Ryan Green said. “It’s a great experience for everyone and it should be a good game.”

First at noon, the Lady Bulldogs (8-2) will try and make it three straight victories as they take on a Lady Eagles (2-7) squad who has had some struggles this season.

While Wilson has managed to crack 40 plus points once this season, head coach Jason Allensworth and his squad have eclipsed the mark eight times, including putting up 84 points in their season opener.

Then at 1:30 p.m. the Bulldogs (3-7) will try and break their two-game losing streak against a high-flying Eagles (8-1) squad who has 70 or more points in four games this season.

“We’ve been trying to work on a lot of things recently,” Green said. “Our team looks a little different because of injuries so some guys who don’t normally play are stepping in for us.”

Among the notables who won’t be available are sophomore Tanner Ford who is out with a knee injury, along with junior Zach Rivera who is nursing an ankle injury.

“Tanner managed to practice a little on Wednesday,” Green said. “He was able to run a little. But, he’s not at 100 percent yet, so he’s about a week or two away from playing.”

Green added he hopes his team can slow the pace down and force Wilson to adjust away the fast paced style they are used to.

“Last time we played Wilson, we were able to play good defense for the first half,” he said. “We need to slow the game down and make them play at our tempo. It would be huge for us to get a win like this to finish the calendar year with.”