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Region II Tourney in Shawnee: Murray State women upset Redlands, 67-60

Brian Johnson
Sports Editor
Reneya Hopkins, of Redlands Community College, puts up a shot between Murray State's Kes Reeves (left) and Madison Roberson (30) Friday in the semifinals of the Region II Women's Basketball Tournament.

Alaijah Stewart popped in five 3-point shots and finished with a game-high 23 points as the Murray State College Lady Aggies upset the top-seed Redlands Community College Lady Cougars, 67-60, Friday afternoon in the semifinals of the NJCAA Region II Women's Basketball Tournament at the Oklahoma Baptist University Noble Complex.

Murray State trailed 20-12 after one quarter and was down by a 34-25 margin heading into halftime. But the Lady Aggies went on a 26-8 third-quarter tear to take control.

Madison Robinson added 12 points, seven boards, three assists and two steals to the Murray State attack. Kes Reeves chipped in nine points and three assists and Jillian Ingram suppled seven points and 11 rebounds for the winners.

Kiara Lovings topped the Lady Cougars' scoring with 15 points, Reneya Hopkins followed with 13 and Christina Jenkins contributed 12. Karyssa Jackson chipped in eight points and 10 rebounds in a losing effort.

The game was far from being a shooting clinic as the Lady Aggies finished at 36.1% from the field while Redlands hit at only a 32.1% clip. Murray State was 7-of-25 (28%) from outside the arc and the Lady Cougars were just 4-of-20 (20%).

The Lady Aggies hit 16-of-25 free shots (64%) while Redlands was 16-of-18 (88.9%).

Each team collected 44 rebounds. The Lady Cougars committed 20 turnovers to Murray State's 17.

The Lady Aggies will play Northern Oklahoma-Enid in the Region II women's title game Saturday at 2 p.m. at OBU's Noble Complex.

NORTHERN OKLAHOMA-ENID 75, NORTHEASTERN OKLAHOMA A&M 53 (Women's Semifinals)

The Northern Oklahoma College-Enid Jets received 21 points and nine rebounds from Lauren Wade in the 22-point victory over the Lady Norse.

Wade knocked down 9-of-13 shots and 3-of-3 free throws as NOC-Enid shot 45.3% from the field overall and was 41.2% from 3-point territory (7-of-17). The Jets managed to nab the win despite converting only 10-of-20 free-throw tries.

Tonijah Fortune followed with 16 points, five assists and five boards and Tanara Combs registered a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds. Two others – Shelby Black and Euresia Brown – tacked on nine points each for the winners.

Kiarra Brooks paced NEO with 15 points, Eliska Stebetakova followed with 12 and Ivvana Murillo chipped in 10 as the Lady Norse shot just 36.2% from the floor and only 31.6% (6-of-19) from outside the arc. NEO hit only 5-of-11 charity tosses.

The Jets controlled the boards by a 42-32 margin and had two less turnovers than the Lady Norse, 16-14.

NOC-Enid will take on Murray State College for the Region II title Saturday at 2 p.m.

NORTHEASTERN OKLAHOMA A&M 85, NORTHERN OKLAHOMA-ENID 63 (Men's Semifinals)

Rudi Williams fired in 32 points, snatched eight rebounds, dished out seven assists and recorded a pair of steals as the Golden Norse rolled to the 22-point semifinal victory.

Williams canned 10-of-19 shots from the floor, was a perfect 2-of-2 from 3-point land and was 10-of-13 from the free-throw stripe.

Teammate Samkelo Cele added 21 points, nine rebounds and two steals as only two NEO players reached double figures.

The Golden Norse shot 50.8% form the field, including 53.6% in the first half. NEO converted just four 3-point shots on the night. NEO knocked down 75% (21-of-28) of its free-throw attempts.

The Jets were only able to connect on 38.3% of their field-goal tries and only 44% in the free-throw department. They were 32.1% (9-of-28) from outside the arc.

Ikenna Okeke led the way for NOC-Enid with 16 points while Jalen Stamps and Zach McDermott finished with 10 apiece.

Okeke hit 6-of-11 shots from the field, including 2-of-3 from 3-point range, and 2-of-2 free shots.

The Golden Norse dominated the boards by a 42-28 count.

NEO takes on Murray State in the Region II men's championship game on Saturday at 4 p.m. at the OBU Noble Complex.

MURRAY STATE 79, NORTHERN OKLAHOMA-TONKAWA 73 (Men's Semifinals)

Dyson Plumley poured in a game-high 24 points while nailing 7-of-14 shots from the field and 9-10 free throws as the Aggies clipped the Mavericks.

Joining Plumley in double figures for Murray State were Jerry Carraway with 14 and Cedric Garrett with 13.

The Aggies shot 44.2% for the game, but was only 30.2% from long range (6-of-20). They did manage to knock down 27-of-38 (71.1%) free shots.

A 52% shooting effort from the field in the second half helped spark Murray State.

NOC-Tonkawa was only 39% from the floor and just 28% (7-of-25) from outside the arc. The Mavericks did hit 74.1% of their free throws (20-of-27).

Demaree King led NOC-Tonkawa with 18 points and Tyrel Morgan was close behind with 17. King handed out four assists and Morgan had three.

Syrus Grisby landed 8-of-9 free throws and finished with 12 points for the Mavericks in a losing cause.

The Aggies, leading 43-34 at the break, outscored NOC-Tonkawa by a 45-30 margin in the final 20 minutes.

Murray State faces NEO in Saturday's 4 p.m. Region II men's championship game at OBU's Noble Complex.