PHS hoops squads prepare for ‘finals’ week at Hominy

Mike ErwinJournal-Capital

The return to Class 2A will have Pawhuska’s high school basketball teams facing old rivals in a familiar road setting for the upcoming district round of the 2016 state playoffs — and, there’s even going to be a preview.

District fates of the Huskies and Lady Huskies were guaranteed home-style, Osage County flavor last week when the PHS squads drew an assignment to a three-team District hosted by Hominy High School. The locals will face the Lady Bucks and Bucks for 2A Area I District 8 semifinal matchups at 6:30 and 8 p.m. Feb. 19. Also assigned to the district are the Rejoice Christian Eagles and Lady Eagles, according to Thursday’s announcement via the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association.

PHS head coach/co-athletic director Lori Shatswell said the Lady Huskies could have been given the district’s opening-round bye — which, it turns out, doesn’t necessarily go the team that has the best overall record.

“We’d won 10 games and lost 11, and they (the Rejoice Christian girls) were 10 and 10,” Shatswell said. “But, Hominy (as the host school) actually picked us (the Lady Huskies) as the team they wanted to play.”

According to the OSSAA-devised format for 2A’s three-team districts, the host school is to rate and seed two teams based on winning percentage. After those squads are placed at the top and bottom of the bracket, respectively (by record), the team with the worst record (in this case, the Lady Bucks) gets to choose which seeded team will be given the first-round bye.

After playing their final home games Tuesday night( Feb. 9) versus Pawnee, the Pawhuska squads are headed to Hominy for last regular-season contest set next Feb. 16. Three nights later, the same teams will meet in the same gym with the stakes raised to a district level.

Pawhuska dropped to 2A this basketball season after being a 3A school for the past several years. (Class 3A has two-team hoops districts.)

Main Regional site for the local squads will be Kiefer, while the Enid Event Center is designated to be the Area site. Other Area districts for Pawhuska’s half of the bracket include: Cashion, with Depew, and Crossings Christian; Crescent with Drumright and Stroud, and Kiefer, with Yale and Wellston.

The other half of Area I includes the following districts: Laverne with Hooker and Fairview; Hinton with Cordell and Oklahoma Bible Academy; Watonga with Merritt and Pioneer-Pleasant Vale, and Pawnee with Morrison and Tonkawa.

Nowata is one of the the main site for the East Regional in Class 2A’s Area II. Oklahoma Union will host Commerce and Wyandotte in a district, and Caney Valley and Quapaw visit Ketchum. Muskogee Civic Center is 2A’s Area II site.

The PHS boys are currently 8-13 for the season while Rejoice Christian is 16-4, which has earned the Eagles Class 2A’s No. 12 ranking. Hominy’s Bucks are 13-4. A week ago, the Huskies went on the road to battle the 3A Dewey Bulldoggers. For the second time this season, coach Mark Frye’s boys’ squad turned in a strong effort against the No. 15-ranked Doggers.

Pawhuska’s girls slipped past the Lady Doggers after defeating them handily (43-25) in their earlier meeting at PHS.

PHS GIRLS 44,

DEWEY 39

Lady Huskies: 11 - 12 - 7 - 14 — 44

Lady Doggers: 16 - 6 - 9 - 8 — 39

Pawhuska Lady Huskies (10-11) — Kailee Hambright 15, Sydney Sellers 11, Mya Hambright 6, Sarah Phillippi 2, Keylee Kirk 2, Kyleigh Riebel 3, Star Sweeden 3, Sierra Sellers 2, Genie Herren 0, Darienne Frye 0, Sidney Walker 0. Coach: Lori Shatswell.

Dewey Lady Doggers (6-14) — Karissa Jones 9, Erin Herchock 7, Ashlee Bridges 7, Kennedy Cleveland 7, Kiersten Vincent 7, Emily Sellers 2. Coach: Ernest Jones III.

DOGGERS 76, HUSKIES 69

Pawhuska Huskies: 14 - 17 - 27 - 11 — 69

Dewey Bulldoggers: 21 - 15 - 23 - 17 — 76

Pawhuska Huskies (8-13) — James Young 20, Tyler Wilson 19, Hayden Henley 10, Mattheu Rector 6, William Merrell 2, Ben Gray 6, Brian Jeffers 3, Lance Harden 2, Nathan Richardson 1. Coach: Mark Frye.

Dewey Bulldoggers (11-8) — Trenton Anderson 24, Tyren Ricks 15, Hunter Hines 8, Drew Miller 6, Colton Thornton 4, Alfredo Lopez 1. Coach: Lance Knight.