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Seminole, Okemah divide two games

Keven Scrutchins
Shawnee News-Star, USA TODAY NETWORK
Seminole's Holli Ladd scores a bucket against Okemah Friday night.
Photo by Keven Scrutchins

SEMINOLE - The Seminole basketball squads hosted the Okemah Panthers and Lady Panthers Friday for a homecoming doubleheader and came away with a split.

The Panthers defeated the Chieftains 64-62 in the opener before the Lady Chieftains took care of the Lady Panthers 57-43.

The boys’ game was a roller-coaster of emotion and close the entire 32 minutes of play. Seminole came into the contest with revenge on its mind after Okemah defeated the Chieftains 80-48 a week ago in the semifinals of the 66 Conference Basketball Tournament.

With the game tied at 62-62, Okemah’s Kaiden Bear grabbed an offensive rebound and made the chip-shot bucket with 0:09 left, but Seminole’s Bryce Marshall took the ball the length of the court and put up a running 7-footer that bounced in, then out as the buzzer sounded. Marshall finished with 22 points for Seminole.

The Chieftains led 15-13 after the first quarter and built their biggest lead of the half of 39-32 on a Seth Moppin deuce with 0:36 left. Marshall scored 16 of his 22 points in the first half. Miguel Conley had a nice first half, scoring nine for Seminole. The Panthers' Aaron Little scored a bucket with 0:19 left in the half to cut the deficit to 39-34 with a half to play.

In the third, Okemah’s sharpshooter Ethan Hodgens heated up and hit three treys in the quarter, helping rally Okemah to a 52-52 tie with a quarter left to play. Marshall scored five more points for Seminole in the third.

The two teams, in the final quarter, shared the lead four times and exchanged the lead five times in the pressure-cooker final frame. Senior Easton Wurtz hit two big treys for Seminole down the stretch to keep the win within reach, but two turnovers down the stretch cost the Chieftains in the end. The second of the two led to Bear’s put-back that turned out to be the game-winner.

Okemah’s Kurtis Wilson matched Marshall’s 22 points for game-high honors.

The Panthers' Hodgens finished with 20 and Bear tallied 14 points.

Seminole’s Conley scored 11 and Moppin dropped in 10 for the Chieftains.

Seminole 57, Okemah 43 (Girls)

It took a half for the Lady Chieftains to get things rolling against the Lady Panthers. They held a slim 12-10 lead after the first quarter and increased it to 25-20 by half’s end.

Holli Ladd led the Lady Chieftains with nine first-half points. Okemah’s Sophie Turner led all first-half scorers with 10.

The third quarter belonged to the Seminole defense. The Lady Chieftains limited Okemah’s outside shooting threats and held the Lady Panthers to just eight points in the quarter. Ladd and Annira Sewell each hit 3-pointers to help the Lady Chieftains to a 40-28 lead after three quarters of play.

In the fourth, the Lady Panthers made a mini-run, cutting the Seminole lead to 49-40 on an Abby Harrelson trey with 3:27 remaining in the game. Ladd put the game to rest on the next possession, executing an old-fashioned 3-point play with 3:19 left to play. Seminole was back up 52-40 and then sealed the deal on an Anna Andrews 3-ball at the 2:58 mark.

Ladd led Seminole with 19 points and Andrews finished with 15. Kennedy Coker netted nine.

Okemah’s Turner led all scorers with 19 points and Harrelson collected 14 points. Taylor Harberman finished with 10 points.