The No. 4 Edmond North Huskies defeated the No. 1 Moore Lions 83-78 in a triple overtime slugfest at North’s Siberian Gymnasium Tuesday evening.
“It’s unbelievable, my hat’s off to both teams,” said Edmond North girls head coach Pete Papahronis. “I got nothing but respect for both teams. All those girls were out there. Starters and bench players for both teams. Unbelievable, because we pretty much finished the game with all subs. Congratulations to Moore, congratulations to our girls I don’t know what to say, that’s about as good as a high school basketball game as you're going to see.”
North had four players foul out and three were caused by Moore’s Aaliyah Moore, who finished with 33 points. She shot 33 free-throws Tuesday night as she was dominate under the rim. Coming into the game, Papahronis knew it would be a challenge to stop her.
“I mean what can you do against her? She’s that type of player,” said Papahronis. “I can draw it up but there’s really nothing — she’s that good of a player. We just tried to make it difficult for her, we tried to keep the ball out of her hands, we tried to double team her, but you can’t stop her. The only thing you can try to do is slow her down, maybe.”
Moore’s Moore sent the game to the first overtime as she was fouled and hit two free throws to tie it at 62. She then sent it to the second overtime from the free-throw line as well, as she was fouled, missed the two ensuing free throws, and then grabbed the offensive rebound and was fouled again. Her two makes tied it at 72.
However, the Huskies were able to finally slow her down. Moore would foul out with one minute to go in the second overtime. But Moore’s Ahanti Day sent it to the third extra-frame with a layup after getting two offensive rebounds from her own shot.
In the third, North’s Toni Papahronis would finish the game for the Huskies. She knocked down her final free-throw to ice it, guaranteeing a new career-high of 31 points.
“She’s our quarterback,” said Coach Papahronis. “She’s what makes us run, she came out in the first half a little shaky but I think second half and the overtimes she carried us all the way.”
The North girls improved to 5-0 on the season.
Coach Papahronis didn’t think his team would have stayed unbeaten if it wasn’t for the performance from his reserves.
“I want to congratulate my girls off the bench,” said Papahronis. “Those girls gave phenomenal minutes, when our top players and top scorers were on the bench those girls came in and brought home a victory.”
North boys keep it short
The North boys — counteracting the close-fought girls game that delayed tipoff Tuesday — took an early lead and never looked back.
In the first half, both teams struggled from the field as North shot 27.5%, (8-29) and Moore shot 29% (7-24). But North would come out in the second half a different team as they shot 60%.
Edmond North head coach Scott Norris said his team’s energy can’t be predicated on whether the shots are falling.
“We can’t make our energy be dictated by whether shots go in,” said Norris. “We’ve got to have the same energy. I think we played just a little bit complacent, lazy, whatever you want to say, but finally we hit some shots and finally got ourselves going. We can’t wait to hit shots before we play hard.”
In the first half, the Huskies only hit three 3-pointers, but out of the halftime North knocked down seven from the same distance.
“We have a lot of guys who can shoot the ball,” Norris said. “We got a lot of guys that can get to the rim, post play, it’s just part of it and we’ll take whatever the defense gives us. We want to step up and hit a better percentage than what we’ve been hitting.
Norris said the home-court atmosphere may have helped his team get in the grove out of halftime.
“It was good to play at home where we could get on a roll a little bit in the second half.”
Coming off his Edmond Open Super 5 selection Landry Harris finished the game with eight points, but it was his post Abraham Aghasedo who led the Huskies Tuesday night. Aghasedo finished with 15 points and shot 7-8 from the free-throw line.
“[Aghasedo’s] just getting better everyday,” Norris said. “This is his fifth varsity basketball game and he’s learning everyday and does a great job in practice, working with coach [Corbin] Byford to improve and I think we’ll see him progress and progress throughout the year.
The Edmond North boys improved to 4-1 on the season. They will host Edmond Memorial Friday at 7:30 p.m. to try and avenge their only lost on the season.