The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

March 2, 2013

Lomega girls fall in 2 OT in finals

By Michael Swisher,
Enid News and Eagle

OKLAHOMA CITY —  Lomega will have to wait at least another year to make history.

The second-ranked Lady Raiders were stunned 56-53 by Erick in a double-overtime Class B championship game Saturday at State Fair Arena.

Lomega was gunning for its 12th state championship, which would have put it all alone atop the girls’ record book.

Instead, it was sixth-ranked Erick hoisting the gold for the second time in its history.

“There’s no other way to describe it other than to say it’s disappointing,” said Lomega coach Kevin Lewallen. “We fought hard to come back, but couldn’t get that last stop.”

Erick worked the clock down in the second overtime before Kelsey Brinkley’s high post pass found Makenzie Janz for a bucket underneath. Janz was fouled and made the ensuing free throw with 10 seconds left.

Ashley LaGasse’s would-be tying 3-pointer was off the mark as the buzzer sounded.

“Kelsey said every time she caught it at the high post, she thought Makenzie or someone would be open because they were looking to stop the drive,” said Erick coach Justin Janz. “She was right. What a call.”

Erick’s title looked improbable with just 15 seconds left in regulation.

Lomega had just turned an eight-point deficit into a 45-40 lead with a furious rally.

Taylor Mendell scored seven and Charity Geis six as Lomega went on a 13-0 run.

Erick’s chances were slipping away when a Lomega turnover with 15 seconds left turned into a Brinkley layup.

Still up three, LaGasse had a chance to ice the game, but missed the front end of a one-and-one with 12.5 seconds left.

With time running out, Maranda Janz buried a 3-pointer to tie it from about 26 feet.

“I saw my defender had backed off to the 3-point line and I knew I had enough range,” Janz said. “The ball just floated up there and went in.”

Lomega was unable to get off a shot before the end of regulation, and stymied Erick’s attempt to score near the end of the first overtime.

Mendell tied the game at 47 before Erick ran the final 1:47 off the clock.

LaGasse tied the game at 53 with her bucket with one minute to go in the second extra frame.

The senior was limited to just eight points on 4-of-19 shooting, but she did grab 11 rebounds.

Mendell led Lomega with 24 points, while Geis scored 10.

Erick got 23 points from Maranda Janz and 12 apiece from Brinkley and Shyli May.

The runner-up finish was the fifth for Lomega.

“We came here for gold, so from that standpoint it’s disappointing,” Lewallen said. “But I am proud of the girls for getting here and fighting back. It’s tough to defend a title and we almost pulled it off.”