By Ryan Costello, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle
ENID, Okla. —
Chisholm’s double-digit lead shrunk to two points in the second half of the Lady Longhorns’ district 1 match against Oklahoma Centennial, until sophomore Megan Galusha scored 10 of her game-high 25 in the third to silence the rally. Faith Mirelez added 13 and the Lady Longhorns took the District 1 title 58-47 Saturday at Chisholm’s Paul J. Outhier Field House.
“(Galusha’s) been playing a long time,” said Chisholm coach Terry Middleton. “She came in as a freshman and started for us … Most freshmen don’t get that kind of experience, so she’s playing like she’s a junior. She’s playing like she’s been around (the playoffs) before.”
Chisholm (13-11) held Oklahoma Centennial to 12 first-half points — six apiece in the first and second quarters — as the Lady Bison were just 6-of-29 shooting from the floor and surrendered 12 turnovers before intermission.
Asheley Middleton hit a three to give Chisholm its first double-digit lead, a 21-10 advantage that Kammi Gruber pushed to 25-10 with a three-point play and another free throw on consecutive trips to complete a 16-4 run.
The Lady Longhorns led, 27-12 at halftime, but Centennial opened the third quarter on a 15-2 run, hitting seven of 11 shots to open the frame as Chisholm missed seven of eight and lost four turnovers in the same span.
Centennial pulled to within 29-27, prompting a timeout that was followed by Galusha’s run, a 10-point barrage that was extended to a 12-0 run on a Mirelez layup assisted by Galusha to give Chisholm a 41-27 lead.
“(Middleton) seemed a lot more calm than usual,” Mirelez said. “He was trying to keep us at a steady pace, and it worked.”
“He told me to attack and draw fouls,” said Galusha, who also had a game-high seven steals. “That’s what I did.”
Chisholm’s lead was at least nine until a three from Centennial’s Travia Bond pulled the Lady Bison to within seven at 54-47 with 40 seconds remaining.
Chisholm closed the game on a 4-0 run to clinch the district throne and set up a regional winners bracket tilt with undefeated No. 2 Perkins-Tryon (23-0), which steamrolled Perry 44-18 Friday in Perry.
“They’re well-coached, and they’ve got big, tall girls,” Middleton said.
“They’ve just got good talent, but they’re a team that we fit well with.”
Bond paced Centennial (14-10) with 15, and Lafhonda Watson added 14 for the Lady Bison, who will play Perry Thursday at Perkins-Tryon.
Nicole Middleton scored eight points and added a game-best four blocks, and Gruber also added eight for the Lady Longhorns, who play at Perkins-Tryon 6:30 p.m. Thursday.
OKLA. CENTENNIAL 73, CHISHOLM 42 (B)
Class 3A’s No. 1 team jumped on Chisholm from the get-go, forcing 11 first-quarter turnovers to take a 22-9 lead, and the Oklahoma Centennial Bison never let up, taking the District 1 title 73-42 Saturday at Chisholm.
The Bison forced eight more turnovers in the second quarter and another seven in the second half, creating easy chances on the offensive end and gaining on the Longhorns throughout.
“(Centennial has) quicker hands, quicker feet than we’re used to,” said Chisholm coach Cody Spurlock. “They were more up in our chest. They didn’t give us any room to breathe and compose ourselves.”
Caleb Lang scored a team-high 13 points for the Longhorns (7-17), who will play Perry at 3 p.m. Thursday in a regional losers bracket elimination game at Perkins-Tryon, which beat Perkins on Friday.
Chisholm split its only two meetings with Perry (12-11) this season, losing to the Maroons 58-52 in the Wheat Capital Tournament before winning 54-50 10 days later.
“It comes down to, win and advance, or lose and go home,” Spurlock said. “They’re a good ballclub. They’ve got some shooters and they’ve got some big guys inside that we’ll have to deal with, but if we play like we’re capable of playing, we can win.”
Austin Garner scored a game-high 15 for Centennial (17-7), which will play 3A No. 20 Perkins-Tryon (15-8) Thursday in the regional winners bracket.