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The Shawnee News-Star
  • Lady Wolves survive tough challenge

  • Class 5A’s top-ranked Shawnee ran its season record to 20-1 Friday, and moved to 6-0 in the Suburban Conference while surviving a tough challenge in a 40-33 win over third-ranked Carl Albert at the Shawnee High School Performing Arts and Athletic Center.
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  • Class 5A’s top-ranked Shawnee ran its season record to 20-1 Friday, and moved to 6-0 in the Suburban Conference while surviving a tough challenge in a 40-33 win over third-ranked Carl Albert at the Shawnee High School Performing Arts and Athletic Center.
     
    The Lady Wolves, the defending state champions, now hold a 16-game winning streak.
     
    Shawnee started strong Friday, forging an 11-4 first-quarter lead after falling behind 2-0 in the first 20 seconds of play. It was the only time Carl Albert led.
     
    The Lady Wolves got nine of their 12 second-quarter points from junior McKenzie Cooper, and the hosts were up 23-16 at the break. Cooper finished with a team-high 17 points, including a 6-for-7 effort at the free throw line.
     
    She also picked up one of Shawnee’s four 3-point field goals.
     
    “I thought McKenzie and Micaela (Yu) played extremely well inside,” said SHS coach Wendi Wells. “It was a great win. We see some weaknesses we need to work on, like controlling the ball, but overall it’s a great win. We beat the No. 3 team.”
     
    Yu, the team’s only senior, netted 10 points.
     
    “Mei came up big on her senior night,” Wells said of Yu, “and McKenzie stepped up and made some big free throws.”
     
    Carl Albert got to within two points on two third-quarter occasions, but Shawnee got a 4-0 run from Cooper that translated into a 31-25 lead to start the fourth quarter.
     
    Through the first three quarters, Shawnee had kept the turnovers low — having just three to Carl Albert’s 10. The pressure went up a notch over the final eight minutes, however, and the Lady Wolves turned the ball over seven times to the Lady Titans’ five in the fourth.
     
    Wells credited her young guards with keeping their composure and not letting the situation get out of hand.
     
    “They’re continuing to mature at that position,” Wells said. “We’re throwing them into the fire and hoping they can learn on the job.”
     
    Carl Albert’s Gioya Carter led all scorers with 19 points. Teammate Jordan Gilbert provided 10.
     
    The Lady Titans were 5-for-10 (50 percent) on charity tosses. The Lady Wolves were 14-for-21 (66.7 percent).
     
    Shawnee will close out the regular season with trips to Noble (Feb. 12) and Chickasha (Feb. 15), and the Lady Wolves will host a Class 5A regional tournament beginning Thursday, Feb. 21. Shawnee will open the tournament against Capitol Hill at 8 p.m. that day, and the winner of that game will advance to a 1:30 p.m. game Saturday, Feb. 23, against the winner of El Reno and Bishop McGuinness.
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