Empire senior Kaelyn Allensworth didn’t have time to bleed.
Still, in the second quarter of the 57-42 win versus Geronimo at Chattanooga Friday, the referee made her take a seat to bandage her knee. That was the only time that Allensworth spent on the bench in the first-round playoff victory, and she more than made up for it in the third quarter.
Allensworth finished with 25 points, 14 of which came in a crucial third that put the Bulldogs (10-9) well ahead.
“I love it when senior leadership steps up like that,” coach Jason Allensworth said. “We always tell them when we leave halftime, ‘Big third quarter. Don’t come out flat. Make a big statement.’ She did that.”
After coming out flat in their last game, a 56-46 loss to Wilson, the Bulldogs made sure that wasn’t going to happen. Sophomore point guard Sherre Dewey sunk a three pointer and then fed an assist to senior Jessica Carney. Empire led 5-0 and Geronimo (6-14) took a timeout.
“That lets me know how we’re going to play night in and night out, is how we come out that first two three minutes of the ballgame,” coach Allensworth said. “We came out on a mission.”
That mission took a hit when Dewey went down with an injury midway through the first. She had to come out and would not return. With the team’s best ballhandler out, senior Melaina Yearby took over the point guard role.
Instead of fulfilling her usual role as a prolific scorer, Yearby had to concentrate on running the offense. With Geronimo mounting a comeback in fourth quarter, Yearby’s leadership became even more vital.
“Once we stay focused, stay calm, we can control the ball better,” Yearby said.
With the win, the Lady Bulldogs punched their ticket to the regional regardless of what happened Saturday versus No. 11 Chattanooga.
Empire lost that game 73-33, in large part due to a 21-1 third quarter. The Lady Bulldogs trailed by just eight at halftime.
“We came out playing well,” Allensworth said. “They came out in a totally different gear. I don’t know if we were fatigued from Friday night, but we just didn’t come out with the same energy.”
The Empire boys (3-16) didn’t the get the chance to play Saturday, after they lost to Geronimo 77-63 on Friday. The Bulldogs were down 22 at one point in the third quarter, but a resurgence from senior Tanner Ford forced the Geronimo faithful into nail-biting mode.
Coach Stefan Hunt’s team knocked on the door of a single-digit deficit for most of the fourth quarter, but couldn’t break through. He chalked it up to controlling the ball.
“You can’t have 22 turnovers and expect to beat anybody this late in the season,” Hunt said. “We can chalk some of that up to inexperience, but at some point in time, you have to be mature enough to slow down, do what’s right and not let your emotions get the best of you.”
Ten of those turnovers came in a first quarter to forget for Hunt. Down 18-9 after one and 43-27 at the half, it looked like Geronimo was going to cruise to victory.
The Bulldogs fired back. Ford hit his stride scoring all of his 19 points in the second half, which his team won 36-32. It was just too much of a hole to climb out of. Hunt said the players needed to play calmer when the game first started.
“Tonight we were so amped, so excited that it showed with wanting to go 130 miles per hour,” Hunt said. “You don’t have to go 130. You have to go about 60, because in game time situation, your adrenaline will increase your athleticism.”
Still, Hunt was happy with how the team improved this year. His only hang up was that the seniors couldn’t get farther in the state playoffs bracket.
Empire senior Kaelyn Allensworth didn’t have time to bleed.
Outlaws have chance to host regionals
The Marlow baseball team has had to overcome some adversity in recent weeks, but coach Jeff Brewer is confident the team will get back on track.
The past week started with a road game at Blanchard, ranked seventh in Class 4A, last Tuesday. Then came a tough outing at home against Class 4A Newcastle Thursday and a showdown Friday at Sterling, ranked fourth in Class A.
Tennis teams place second
The Duncan tennis teams did well for themselves in a tough field at the BancFirst Tournament.
The girls played Friday and took second as a team, with Marisa Moore taking second at No. 2 singles and Aubrey Mouser and Jordan Clauson the same placing at No. 2 doubles. Taking third were Alex Bowers at No. 1 singles and Sydney Hendricks and Carly Kirkland at No. 1 doubles.
Bronchos boast top-notch backstops
Central High coach Jeff Jones has had to tinker with his lineup to get the best Bronchos on the field for most of the year, but one position he hasn’t had to worry about is catcher.
That consistency came in the form of two very different players.
First, there’s the unheralded freshman Keeton Sallee. Flirting with a .400 batting average, Sallee is one of the Bronchos’ best offensive weapons. On defense, his quick release and strong arm cause headaches for opponents on the basepath. Just months into his high-school career, he’s performing admirably.
Girls soccer wins big at Eisenhower
The Duncan girls soccer team dominated its match at Lawton Eisenhower Friday, winning 8-0.
“We really moved the ball well,” said Lady Demon coach Delydia Gay. “We did a fantastic job. Everyone got a good amount of playing time.”
‘Dial’-ing up a vaulting tradition
Marlow’s pole vaulters have a good chance to continue the legacy of Joe Dial.
Dial held the world record in the men’s indoor pole vault at one point, clearing 19 feet, 3 3/4 inches in on Feb. 1, 1986. He was a four-time state champion at Marlow from 1978 to 1981, with his best state meet mark coming in 1980 when he cleared 17 feet, 1 inch. He now coaches track at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa.
Demons post good times at tough meet
A meet at the University of Oklahoma Friday proved tough for the Duncan track athletes, but the coaches saw plenty of good things.
Duncan’s boys tallied nine top-six placings at a meet that mostly featured Class 6A schools. Kevin Roddy won the shot put (57’1.5”) and discus (178’11”), Mason Bivens won the 3200 (9:53.71) and Walker Clampitt won the 800 (2:00.03).
Four named to DHS Athletic Hall of Fame
A star on two state champion football teams, two females who will set precedent for their sports and a Velma native who is a mover and shaker in the tennis program comprise the 2014 Duncan Athletic Hall of Fame class to be inducted when DHS holds its annual All-Sports Assembly on Monday, May 19.
Four stand out for Indians at Marietta
Several Comanche track athletes had good showings at a meet in Marietta Friday.
Braden Ledford placed second in the high jump, despite being limited with a hip flexor injury. Track coach Steve Justus said he has been taking it easy with Ledford so he will be healthy for regionals. Ledford has the potential to clear 6 feet, 2 inches, Justus said.
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.
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