A five-point first quarter was not enough to keep the Edmond North boys from victory against Norman Friday Night at Siberian Gymnasium.
The only scores to start the game for the Huskies came from a Cameron Lee 3-pointer and a Landry Harris layup.
“The first quarter we weren’t getting shots and the shots we were getting were kind of rushed threes,” said Edmond North head coach Scott Norris. “Joell gave us great energy off the bench and Cameron Lee came in and hit some shots which gave us life.”
The Huskies charged back with a 17-point second quarter and a 23-point third quarter. During those quarters, Joell Wilson knocked down four 3-pointers and Lee hit another 3-pointer of his own -- all while shooting 4-for-7 from the free-throw line.
“Second half is just a battle and we have to be better at the end,” Norris said. “We got some stops, we rebounded a lot better than what we did in the first quarter. When you hit a couple of shots you feel good about life. Defensively we got some stops and were able to get in transition, I think they got a little bit tired there in the third quarter. We’ve just a battled a little more.”
The Huskies trailed the entire game until Landry Harris tied it at 31 with a steal and score. Abraham Aghasedo gave the Huskies the lead with a free-throw midway through the third quarter and from there the Huskies held the lead going up by as much as 10 after a Dalante Shannon basket.
“We did enough, I mean we knew going in if Norman could have extended periods of energy that they're very talented, they have a former North player, that gives them a little more motivation. They played well. This is a game last year we might have lost. So I’m proud of our guys for their growth and what they’re going.”
Turnovers doom North girls
The North girls were able to get off to an 6-0 first quarter lead but they were plagued by 10 first quarter turnovers and ended the quarter down 15-9
“We just didn’t come out ready to play today,” said Edmond North girls head coach Pete Papahronis. “When you play one of the top teams, if not one of the best teams in the state, you can’t come out and perform the way we did in the first half. Our defense was lack luster, they were able to get to the rim very easily and out worked us. Once we decided to play in the second half it was a little too late.”
North went into the half down 10 points, but were able to battle back and tie the game at 47 in the fourth quarter after Ataya Casaus knocked down one of two free-throws at the line. After both teams went on a scoring drought that lasted nearly three minutes, Toni Papahronis gave the Huskies the lead with two free-throws of her own with just over one minute remaining. But North couldn’t hang on as that was their final score of the game.
“We just have to be more consistent, I thought we were a totally different team in the second half than we were in the first half,” Pete Papahronis said. “Like I say when you’re trying to go out and beat one of the top teams in the state like that you don’t have room for inconsistency. You got to be consistently good the whole game long. We weren’t so that was pretty much the end of it right there.”
Another factor that Papahronis did not let blow over was the teams free-throw efficiency. The Lady Huskies shot 59% (13-22) from the free-throw line while Norman shot 92% (12-13) Friday night.
“We got to make free-throws,” he said. “The games won and lost at the free-throw line. Looking at that they missed one free-throw -- we missed nine. That’s another reason, but sometimes you can’t control whether the ball goes in that hole or not, but you can control your effort. And I thought we came out and didn’t put out the effort we need to beat a team like Norman.”