Tonight was the final round of the Region 4 playoffs as the Sandites traveled to Owasso to take on the Goliath Rams, Frontier Valley Champions and 4th ranked team in Oklahoma. The Sandites were just here last night when they defeated the Edmond North Huskies in a nail biter 59-55 game that sealed them their second consecutive trip to Area. The Sandites started the season on fire but lost their steam half way through and ran a seven game losing streak before breaking it against the Huskies. Simply getting this far was something to be proud of, but the Sandites didn’t count themselves out and showed up ready to play their hardest.
The Sandites started Colt Savage, Evan Perry, Arvionte Nichols, Brooks Haddock and Kyle Keener. The Rams won the jump ball to start the game and quickly took the lead with a two point field goal. Keener was the first Sandite to take a shot at the basket, but missed on a two point goal. Haddock was next and sank a two point jump shot, tying things up briefly before the Rams took the lead again with a pair of three pointers.
Savage was next up with a two point jump shot. The Rams tried to strike next but missed and Haddock took the rebound, getting it to Perry for a layup. 8-6. Nichols was next to snag a defensive rebound and ran it down court for a fouled layup attempt, but sank both of his free throws and tied the game up at 8.
Despite great defense, the Sandites missed too many field goals and gave up too many turnovers as the Rams pulled ahead to 20-10 at the buzzer.
The Sandites performed much better in the second period and were right behind the Rams in scoring, 11-9. Haddock missed a three to start the period, but Taber snagged a fumbled ball and the Sandites turn it into a drive resulting in a ½ performance on free throws by Savage. Keener got a block on a two pointer but it turned into a jump ball that the rams got and sank for two. Haddock got stripped running for a layup, then managed a steal and got it to perry who missed a two. Keener got another block but once again the Rams recover and sink it. 24-11.
Keener missed a two but Savage and Taber shared a rebound and got it to Haddock who missed a three. Mack Thompson was the next to get a block, Perry snagged it, passed to Savage for a three point field goal. The Sandites ended the half with a series of three free throws by Savage, ending it 31-19.
The Rams started the third period scoring with a layup. Haddock brought the ball up court and passed to Savage who sent it back to Haddock who shoots and misses a three, but Savage is right there for the rebound and passes it to Nichols for two.
Here’s where the bogus fouls came out to play in some of the most lopsided foul-calling I’ve seen all season. Thompson nailed a three point jump shot, then Haddock got a defensive rebound on the Rams’ next drive that resulted in a missed two point field goal by Thompson. The Rams rebounded but turned it right back over to the Sandites on a traveling call, followed by a traveling call on the Sandites. The Rams got on the board next with a series of free throws handed to them by garbage calls.
Perry missed a two that the Rams rebounded, but Savage got a steal and passed it to Paul Oates to Taber to Savage who missed a three. Thompson got a pass off to Keener for two, but by now the Rams led 50-26 and would end the period with a 52-26 lead going into the fourth.
The fourth had more fouls than I’ve ever seen in a half, let alone a period. The Sandites failed to find any steam at the beginning of the fourth and finally the second string went in to stir things up. Bryce Dunlap got a free throw, Jake Ward sank a three, Taber got a steal and was fouled on his layup attempt and shot one for two on free throws. The refs call a foul on Taber and ejected him, even though he was nowhere near where the foul that was actually committed by Desjarlais took place. It wasn’t till after the Rams scored that they acknowledged their mistake that everyone was yelling at them about and allowed him to come back in.
Dunlap got on the board again with a two. Ward showed off some great defensive coverage. Taber got a two point field goal before leaving the game. Josh Taber went in for the first time since a hand injury earlier this season. He quickly got on the board with a steal and field goal, then was fouled on a layup and shot one for two. Ward got off another three with less than a minute to play. Blake Shockley was next to go in and missed a three that Ward rebounded and sank. Ward then fouled a Ram with 1.1 left to play. The Rams missed both free throws and Shockley got the rebound and chunked it at the basket but just fell short. The final score was 65-46 Rams.
Colt Savage had a team high 10 points, shooting 5/7 on free throws.
Jake Ward had 8 points.
Arvionte Nichols had 5 points and shot ¾ on free throws.
Jacob Taber had 6 points and shot 2/4 on free throws.
Kyle Keener had 4 points.
Josh Taber had 3 points and shot ½ on free throws.
Mack Thompson had 3 points.
Bryce Dunlap had 3 points and shot ½ on free throws.
Evan Perry had 2 points.
Brooks Haddock had 2 points.
The boys will next take on Booker T Washington at 8PM at Memorial at Area.
The girls will next take on the Owasso Rams on Thursday at Will Rogers at 8PM at Area.