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The Shawnee News-Star
  • Woodard, Morris going different paths after all-star game

  • As Edmond Memorial teammates, Jordan Woodard and Shaquille Morris have experienced far more highs than lows the past two seasons.
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  • As Edmond Memorial teammates, Jordan Woodard and Shaquille Morris have experienced far more highs than lows the past two seasons.
     
    Their junior squad advanced to the Class 6A Final Four. Their senior squad nipped Midwest City for the state championship on a Woodard tip-in as time expired.
     
    Woodard and Morris will team up one more time when the 48th annual Faith 7 Game, matching Texas and Oklahoma basketball standouts, tips off at 7:35 p.m. Saturday at Oklahoma Baptist University’s Noble Complex.
     
    The two key components in Memorial’s 26-2 record in the 2012-13 season won’t have much time to dawdle following Saturday’s game. They will report to their college destinations Sunday.
     
    Woodard (6-0, 190) has cast his lot with Lon Kruger’s up-and-coming Oklahoma squad.
     
    Morris (6-8, 270) is bound for Wichita State, one of the surprise teams in the 2013 NCAA Tournament.
     
    Woodard, who averaged 15.8 points and 7.1 rebounds his senior season, also received scholarship offers from Memphis and San Francisco.
     
    “Coach Kruger built a great relationship with me,” Woodard said. “It was like that with the whole coaching staff and I also liked the players they already had there.
     
    “Their style best fits my game. I thought I could come in and contribute.”
     
    Although Woodard built some outstanding senior-year shooting stats — hitting 51 percent of his field-goal attempts and 83 percent of his foul shots — he thought his mental approach was his best asset.
     
    “My best asset is probably my on-court leadership, my knowledge of the game and basketball IQ,” he said. “I probably need more strength. I just want to get stronger.”
     
    Morris, who netted 20 points against Midwest City in the title game, took four official recruiting visits in Wichita State, Oral Roberts, Lamar and Florida Gulf Coast. Several other schools, including Fresno State, Tulane and Jacksonville, also courted him.
     
    “Wichita State is close to home. It has a great basketball program, a great coach and it’s also a great school. The players are also like my brothers,” Morris said.
     
    Morris committed to the Shockers long before their impressive NCAA Tournament run.
     
    “Definitely, my inside strength is a big part of my game and I can step outside and shoot now,” Morris said. “My consistency and shooting percentage is pretty strong. My 15-foot jumper is really good.
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    “I am ready to start a new chapter in my life.”
     
    As a senior, Morris knocked down 74 percent of his field-goal attempts while averaging 18 points.
     
    Notes
    • Oklahoma holds a 33-19 Faith 7 series edge over the Lone Star State, but Texas has prevailed two of the last three years. Last year’s contest produced a 107-80 Texas landslide.
     
    • Saturday’s game will be preceded by the Shawnee Trophy Company Slam Dunk contest at 7 p.m.
     
    • David Love, a McGuinness product and member of the Oklahoma roster, will be a Sooner this fall but only in a student capacity. Love, who was part of an Irish state championship squad as a junior, will be a business/entrepreneurship major. He averaged 11.8 points and 6.7 rebounds as a senior.
     
    • Oklahoma’s Faith 7 squad arrived in Shawnee at its expected time Thursday afternoon. The Texas team was still en route Thursday afternoon.

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