The Edmond Memorial boys got about all they could handle from North on Friday night. The No. 8-ranked Bulldogs led by just a point with under a minute to play but got big free throws from Lee Cooper and Jordan Thomas as they held on for a 57-55 win at Memorial High School.
“This was our sixth win in a row but it was by far the ugliest,” Memorial coach Shane Cowherd said. “But they are one of the most well-coached teams we’ve played. Coach (Jeff) Tompkins does a great job with his kids and they all know their roles and they do a good job working together as a unit.”
“I thought we got good play out of every guy I put in the game, we just lost,” Tompkins said. “And sometimes you do that. You go out there and play good and you get beat anyway.”
Obi Emegano led all scorers with 18 points. Kameron Doolittle came off the bench to score 11 and James Woodard added nine for Memorial.
Daniel Emesiani led the Huskies (3-11) with 16 points, while Cameron Haley and Patrick Carver each scored nine.
North got off to a strong start and led for much of the first half. The Huskies closed out the first quarter with a 5-0 run to pull ahead 10-9 on an score inside from Emesiani.
The Huskies’ lead grew to five points in the second half with the help of a pair of treys from Tyler Sanders. The Bulldogs (11-3) finally built up some momentum late in the period as they turned a couple turnovers into points. Doolittle made it a two-point game with layup and Jordan Tatum followed that up with a steal and basket just before the horn sounded to pull Memorial even at halftime 20-20.
North continued to keep things close in the third quarter until Emesiani was forced to the bench with foul trouble. Memorial took advantage of the senior’s absence in the paint as they reeled off a 10-2 run and pulled ahead 41-32 at the 2:15 mark. The Huskies finally slowed Memorial down and pulled within six on a 3-pointer from Carver with five seconds left in the period.
The Bulldogs continued to put pressure on Emesiani in the fourth. Emegano scored seven points in the period and helped Emesiani pick up his fifth foul when he took a charge from the North standout.
Even without their leading scorer on the floor, the Huskies continued to push Memorial. Carver hit a pair of 3-pointers and Haley added one as the Huskies outscored Memorial 18-14 in the fourth.
Both squads return to action Tuesday night on the road. The Huskies head to Putnam City North while the Bulldogs are at top-ranked Santa Fe.