The Edmond Sun
Undefeated Broken Arrow came into the Mabee Center with its guns loaded shooting for 26-1 Edmond Santa Fe Saturday afternoon in the Class 6A state championship at Oral Roberts University.
But Santa Fe had already rolled through the initial stages of the state tourney with lopsided victories over Putnam North (57-31) and Muskogee (61-33) respectively.
In the opening quarter against the Lady Tigers, the Wolfpack looked to be on par with the first two contests when guard Tamara Lee poked the ball away from a Broken Arrow guard and traveled to the other end of the court for a layup and a Santa Fe lead of 8-7.
Lady Wolf Alexis Cooper scored off the left block, Alaina Cooper got a steal and then on the offensive end put back a 3-point miss by Summer Jones and Lee went left off the dribble for a jumper and Santa Fe capped off a 10-0 run with just over a minute to play in the first period up 14-7.
The Wolves led 16-9 after the first period as Aahilyah Jackson had picked up 5 rebounds, Lee scored seven points and Alaina Cooper grabbed a pair of rebounds in the frame.
But uncharacteristic of the Santa Fe program that is 107-5 the past four years including a pair of 6A state crowns, the Wolves defense surrendered 25 and 20 points in the middle quarters as Broken Arrow sped off to a 70-51 state championship victory in Tulsa.
“We were trying to do a couple of different defenses,” Santa Fe coach Paul Bass said. “We tried to do our best. Our free throws (11-for-24, 46 percent) killed us and would have kept us going.
“Broken Arrow is good. Hey, they went undefeated.”
Santa Fe also shot just 36 percent from the field (19-for-53) and 13 percent (2-of-15) from beyond the 3-point arc. In contrast, the unbeaten Tigers (28-0) hit 12-of-16 free shots (75 percent) and 26-of-50 field goals (52 percent).
In the second quarter, the Wolves made disheveled passes, surrendered numerous open looks and had a 10-second violation, all contributing to a 25-point second stanza for the Tigers who went into halftime with a 34-32 edge.
Broken Arrow led 54-43 going into the fourth and broke free for a 60-45 cushion with 5:42 left in regulation on a pair of Jordan Doyle free throws.
Jackson answered with a conventional three-point play then on defense had a big block underneath.
The Lady Wolves’ pressure got to aggressive left-handed guard Toree Thompson, who under duress threw the ball backcourt. Santa Fe guard Summer Jones jetlined to the ball and took it in for a score with get within 60-50 with three minutes to play.
But the Lady Tigers pulled the ball out, thus forcing Santa Fe to foul.
Jackson ended the contest with a double-double with a dozen rebounds and 13 points while Lee hit 12 of her 16 points in the opening half. Jones scored seven points, Alaina Cooper six and Alexis Cooper four. Alaina Cooper also contributed seven boards and Andrea Cooper pulled down four.
Thompson nailed 9-of-16 shots from the floor for a game-high 23 points.