By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief
Photo: Morgan Miller, Staff
The Sand Springs girls led for the entire game, often by double digits, until a late rally from senior Lauryn Washington put the Lady Bruins back in the game.
The 11th-ranked Charles Page High School varsity Lady Sandites (12-4) hadn't been tied since 0-0 and for all appearances they had an easy win over #17 Bartlesville (9-8).
Bartlesville was like a pesky gnat, however, and wouldn't go away. Sand Springs jumped to a 7-0 lead to start, but the Bruins fought back within a single possession to end the first period 9-7.
The Sandites went on a run to start the second quarter, with Holly Kersgieter, Sydney Pennington, and Destiney Johnson scoring back-to-back-to-back to double the Bruins 15-7.
Jena Williams, Ronni Gilliard, and Washington sank a series of free throws to narrow it to 22-15 at the half. Free throws would prove to be one of the most crucial points of the game for both teams.
Sophomore Gloria Mutiri scored seven in the third period en route to a thirteen-point advantage and it was beginning to look more and more like the Lady Sandites had this game all wrapped up.
Then Washington showed up, scoring thirteen points in the fourth quarter to cut the gap to 2. With seven seconds left, Gilliard drew a foul and sank both of her free throws to tie the game up for the first time since tip-off.
At 39-all, the girls were headed into overtime for the first time this season.
Bartlesville won the tip-off and Washington sank a two to give Bartlesville their first lead of the game. Pennington tied things up at 41, but Bartlesville went on a free throw spree to ice their cake 46-41.
Despite their (at times) heavy lead, the Sandites had a rough time scoring, shooting only 35% on field goals and 5-of-17 from the charity stripe. Meanwhile, Bartlesville scored 14-of-16 on freebies.
Mutiri shot 6-of-8 on field goals and tacked on a pair of freebies for a team-high 14 points, making her the lone Sandite to double in the low-scoring affair. Washington had the game-high, however, with 24 points.
This marks two-straight losses for the girls who have ran up an impressive tournament record with wins over 5A #4 Shawnee for the Bishop Kelley Invitational Championship, and a tough Life Prep Academy team for the Interstate Classic Championship. When it comes to Frontier Valley, however, the girls have had a tough time with upset losses to Bixby and now Bartlesville.
The girls are 5th in conference with a 4-4 record and big games looming against #5 Muskogee and #1 Sapulpa. They've more than proven they can take on tough foes, however, upsetting #8 Owasso and leading Sapulpa for much of that game before the Chieftains finally rebounded.
The next game for the girls is this Tuesday with the Muskogee Lady Roughers (14-2) visiting Ed Dubie Field House at 6:00 pm.
The Lady Sandites also lost their Tuesday night match-up against #4 Broken Arrow, 54-47.