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The Shawnee News-Star
  • Lady Wolves win first-round test

  • Propelled by an 8-0 racehorse start, Shawnee led from start to finish Thursday night in blitzing Tulsa Memorial 59-35 in quarterfinal-round action of the Class 5A state tournament at the Catoosa Activities Center.
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  • Fast starts are becoming a postseason staple for Shawnee’s girls.
     
    Propelled by an 8-0 racehorse start, Shawnee led from start to finish Thursday night in blitzing Tulsa Memorial 59-35 in quarterfinal-round action of the Class 5A state tournament at the Catoosa Activities Center.
     
    Shawnee’s advancement may have come at a terribly tough cost. Shawnee junior standout McKenzie Cooper went down with a knee injury in the third quarter and didn’t return to the game.
     
    Asked about Cooper’s availability for the remainder of the state tournament, Shawnee coach Wendi Wells said, “We don’t know yet. She is a tough kid. She’s been injured all season and battled back. We will hope for the best and prepare for the worst.”
     
    The top-ranked and defending state champions were never threatened after leading 15-9 after one quarter and 34-16 at the intermission.
     
    In four postseason games, Shawnee has outscored the opposition 64-21 in the first quarter.
     
    The Lady Wolves, 25-2, advanced to Friday's 7:30 p.m. semifinal game against Carl Albert at Oral Roberts’ Mabee Center. The Lady Titans knocked off Tahlequah 44-37 in Thursday’s final quarterfinal contest.
     
    In a Feb. 8 game in Shawnee, the Lady Wolves defeated Carl Albert 40-33 as Cooper posted a team-high 17 points.
    Gioya Carter, who is headed to Oklahoma, had 19 points for Carl Albert.
     
    In two earlier quarterfinal battles, Tulsa East Central knocked off Del City 54-50 and Deer Creek defeated Collinsville 42-40. Shawnee defeated Tulsa East Central in last year’s state championship game.
     
    Fourteenth-ranked Memorial was walloped early as two layups by Kelsey Simmons and a bucket apiece by Bailey Taylor and Micaela Yu formed the 8-0 spread.
     
    Taylor posted 13 opening-half points, including three shots from 3-point range. Her final trey of the first half came at the buzzer following Memorial’s seventh turnover.
     
    Taylor missed only one 3-point shot in the first half.
    Shaiann Tramble of Shawnee, averaging 3.8 points, netted five opening-half points.
     
    Memorial got within 36-22 in the first three minutes of the third quarter but that was the Chargers’ high-water mark.
     
    Shawnee, which led 46-26 after three quarters, out-scored the Lady Chargers 13-9 in the final eight minutes.
     
    Including last year, Shawnee has won 10 consecutive postseason games.
     
    Taylor, who has eight 3-point field goals in the past two games, led Shawnee’s scoring against Memorial with 19 points.
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    Memorial concludes the year at 14-13. The Lady Chargers have been to four state tournaments in the last five years.
     
    Freshman Monique Tramble added 10 points for Shawnee.
     
    Note: Report compiled by Fred Fehr.

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