Impossible is nothing. Just ask the Velma-Alma Lady Comets.
With her team down by one point with 53 seconds left in the fourth, senior Teddi Southerland hit a three-point shot off the glass, from what looked to be an impossible angle on the right side, near the baseline.
The basket sparked all of the fans wearing maroon inside Stroud’s Route 66 Coliseum, as the Lady Comets upset No. 12 Stonewall 42-40 Friday afternoon to put themselves one game away from the state tournament.
Southerland admitted she believed there was someone special guiding her crucial shot.
“Whenever it went in, I thought it had to be Braylee (Henry) who helped me,” she said. “This means everything to us. We all believed we could make it here. No one else thought we would make it, but we’re here now.”
Despite his best efforts following the victory, V-A head coach Jerry Garrett couldn’t hide his excitement nor his emotion for his entire team.
“I’m trying to hold it all together as best as I can,” he said. “It’s tough with everything that happened with Braylee. This season is for her and this team has taken off with that attitude. Rankings don’t matter, and our team doesn’t care if we’re playing the No. 1 team in the state. These girls keep battling every possession and I’m so proud of every single one of them.”
The shot was an exciting climax to a fourth quarter which saw the Lady Longhorns nab their only lead of the contest at the 1:11 mark at 37-36.
But, with SHS post player Breann Gipson fouling out late on and taking with her 11 points, the Lady Comets were able to take advantage.
V-A controlled the pace of the game from the opening tip, racing out to an 8-0 lead before Stonewall even got on the board.
When the Lady Longhorns did get points, it was 8-2 Lady Comets with 3:34 left in the first.
Going into the second quarter, the Lady Comets held an 11-5 lead, which remained in tact going into halftime at 21-16.
V-A’s biggest lead of the night came in the third quarter at nine points, as the Lady Comets took a 34-27 lead into the fourth.
From the free throw line both teams missed five times, as V-A went 8-of-13 and Stonewall shot 4-of-9.
“We didn’t know much about Stonewall coming into this game,” Garrett said. “We’ve got a tough schedule and girls basketball is good in the southwest. I feel like we’re just as good as a lot of these ranked teams here. We’re excited to keep this rolling.”
Kylee Saville paced the Lady Comets (21-7) with 15 points with Teddi Southerland close behind with 11 points.
Ariah Johnson scored eight points in the contest, with Shalyn Files adding four points. Bita Humphreys put in three points.
Stonewall (21-9) was led by Haley Snell with 13 points followed by Breann Gipson with 11 points. Kim Helms added 10 points.
V-A’s last challenge to the state tournament was a rematch with No. 5 Pond Creek-Hunter that was scheduled for Saturday night.
Impossible is nothing. Just ask the Velma-Alma Lady Comets.
Demon golfers compete at Lincoln Park
The Duncan boys golfers competed at a tournament at Lincoln Park Golf Course in Oklahoma City Thursday.
Individual scores were Blake Graham with 76 and 79, Logan Harris with 76 and 75, Tyler Albin with 77 and 78, Christian Dructor with 78 and 86, and Carson Hogstad with 80 and 83.
Track teams head to Norman
The Duncan track athletes travel to Norman today for a meet at the University of Oklahoma.
Duncan boys coach Todd Ledford said that the Demons will be one of just three Class 5A teams attending. The rest of the teams are 6A.
Demon baseball beats Plainview in extra innings
The Duncan baseball team had to go extra innings and then hold off a late rally to win at Plainview 3-2 Thursday.
The game was tied 1-1 after seven innings. The Demons broke the tie with two runs in the top of the eighth, but Plainview battled back to make it 3-2 in its half of the inning.
More home tourney action awaits Demons
Another weekend of home matches await the Duncan tennis teams.
The BancFirst Tournament will be at the Duncan High School tennis courts, with the girls playing Friday and the boys Saturday. The tourneys come one week after Duncan hosted the Southern Oklahoma Invitational.
Bulldog pitching staff builds confidence
Heading towards the postseason, Empire is closing in on the possibility of winning record thanks in large part to its improvements on defense.
The Bulldogs (10-11) have cut down the errors from 10 or more a game to two or three a game. Coach Stefan Hunt said that’s led to the pitchers seeing some better results on the mound. Though, the pitchers have improved their game as well.
Demons in close district race
The Duncan baseball team is in a close race to finish in the top four in District 2-5A and earn a trip to regionals.
Duncan is 7-3 in district and in third place. First-place Carl Albert has lost just one district game. The Titans split with second-place Chickasha, which also split with Duncan.
Gayanich to play for Panhandle State
Velma-Alma senior Jaz Gayanich signed Wednesday to play basketball for Oklahoma Panhandle State University in Goodwell.
Gayanich said Panhandle coach Jerry Olsen was upfront about his program and ideas, compared to other coaches Gayanich visited. Gayanich already knows what role he’s expected to play.
Those who knew John Humphrey respected him
Duncan resident Rod Battles got to know John Humphrey pretty well.
Battles first played Duncan High School baseball for Humphrey in 1965. He later returned to DHS, when Humphrey hired him as an assistant, and later head baseball coach. After both men retired, they became fishing buddies. Humphrey joined Battles and others for annual trips to Lake Texhoma.
Comets stay calm under pressure
Lately, Velma-Alma baseball has made a habit of having some exciting finishes.
In its home tournament, the Jake Leffler Wooden Bat Tournament, last weekend, it won four of five games. All of those victories came by less than five runs and two of them were by only one run.
Course challenges Lady Demons
The Duncan girls golf team took sixth at the longest course it has played this year.
KickingBird Golf Course is 5,300 yards. Add the windy conditions at the tournament hosted by Edmond Santa Fe and it made for a challenging day.
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- Demon golfers compete at Lincoln Park