Special to The Sun
With one of its stars sidelined, the Edmond Memorial boys basketball team needed its other star to shine Monday night against rival Edmond Santa Fe — even if that other star was a former Wolves star himself.
Shaquille Morris, the offseason transfer from Santa Fe, was all too happy to oblige, going for 25 points in a come-from-behind 72-70 victory at home. Of those points, 17 came in the second half, as the top-ranked Bulldogs were erasing a 9-point deficit.
“This means a lot,” Morris said. “This being my old school, I kind of had a chip on my shoulder. I was emotional out there.”
The 6-8 center certainly wasn’t alone, as Tyler Holcomb added 16 points, Aaron Young had 15 and role players off the bench came up with key performances in filling in for injured point guard Jordan Woodard, who was visibly gimpy during the few minutes he played.
The Wolves led for most of the contest, putting together two separate 6-0 runs during a second quarter that helped them build a 38-29 halftime lead. It was still 52-47 at the start of the fourth period when Morris hit a layup and later connected on another to bring the Bulldogs within 56-54. A pair of Holcomb free throws finally caught Memorial up with 5:57 remaining, but Santa Fe still held a 67-66 lead going into the final minute.
Sam Kreutzer knocked down a jumper to put the Bulldogs on top, and then it turned into a free-throw contest. A pair of free throws by the Wolves’ Christian Bills made it 71-70 with just three ticks remaining, and Aaron Young hit one of two to stretch it back to 72-70, before Santa Fe turned the ball over on its final opportunity.
Morris said the halftime discussion partly revolved around the Bulldog post players being more dominant.
“I felt like, if I could get the ball, I could make the offense work better by being a more dominant presence,” Morris said. “If I can score, then that opens things up outside for the 3s.”
Daron Mims led the Wolves with 23 points, while Kade Jacobs knocked in 18 and Curran Scott added 14.