AFTON-While the Oaks boys rolled to a traditional dismantling of their opponents, in sub-regional play, Thursday afternoon at Afton, the Lady Warriors emerged victorious from a game that was contested under some bizarre circumstances.
At first glance, one couldn’t help but notice that the Oaks girls would be taking on a Cave Springs team that had only 6 players in uniform. And despite 6 turnovers in the early going, the Lady Warriors appeared to be firmly in control of things, scoring 15 while holding the Lady Hornets to 9. In the subsequent frame Oaks took much better care of the basketball, but; had some shooting difficulty. Whitney Philpot scored 5 of her team high 22 points for most of Oaks’s 2nd quarter dozen. With a trio of 3 point shots, Cave Springs’s Jackie Grigsby scored 9 of her team’s 15 to pull the Lady Hornets to within 3 at the half , 27-24 at the half. But that would be Grigsby’s last hurrah as she would be whistled for her 5th and final foul before the intermission.
And with the commencement of the 3rd, the Lady Hornets would face the remainder of the game with no bench…and that would just be the beginning of a strange 2nd half. In the opening 2 minutes of the 3rd quarter the Cave Springs roster was reduced to just 4 players when another Grigsby, this time Brandi, was tagged with her 5th foul. Cave Springs continued to play valiantly while Oaks continued to struggle from the floor. After putting in their 1st pair of field goal tries, the Lady Hornets had a 3rd player foul out with 3:30 to play in the stanza. But remarkably, thanks to 8 of Mariah Scott’s game high 28 points, Cave Springs had managed to tie Oaks and eventually take a 2 point lead with just 3 players on the floor. And with 10 seconds to play in the 3rd, the Lady Hornets had yet another player succumb to 5 fouls. With a late bucket Oaks tied things up at 39 each and only a quarter to play. With only 2 players to defend them, the Lady Warriors got 11 from Jess Thompson and 10 more from Philpot to eventually put away the overmatched and physically exhausted Lady Hornets, 67-53.
In the following game, the Oaks boys took on the Gans Grizzlies for the right to continue their season. And with the notable exception of the 2nd period this was a game that belonged exclusively to the Warriors. Things started smoothly for the Oaks boys as Jaron Soap anchored the opening quarter’s scoring fest. With Soap pouring in 3 three pointers and a deuce, the Warriors put up 19 points and held Gans to 2 of 10 from the field and 2 of 4 free throws for only 6 points of their own. Aided by 6 turnovers and a
2 of 11 floor shooting performance, the Oaks offense didn’t score until the 2:46 mark of the frame. And although the Warriors only scored 7, the Oaks defense forced 11 Grizzly miscues, that limited the damage to 9.
The Warriors continued to frustrate Gans in the 3rd, when every time the Grizzlies would get close, Soap would answer their challenge. The gifted senior shooter pounded 11 more of his game’s 35 points to keep his team ahead by double digits. Gans’s Joe Brunk put in 14, while teammate Cody Gardenhire added 6 for the Grizzly’s best quarter of the night. But Soap answered with 13 of the Warrior’s 23 point stretch run that brought the Gans basketball season to a 63-49 ending.