CPHS Boys Basketball falls to No. 12 Sapulpa, Keener ends season with career-high 31 points

UCO-bound senior Kyle Keener posted a career-high 31 points in a playoff loss to Sapulpa. (Photo: Scott Emigh).

UCO-bound senior Kyle Keener posted a career-high 31 points in a playoff loss to Sapulpa. (Photo: Scott Emigh).

Sapulpa 85 CPHS 73

1Q Sapulpa 17-15
2Q Sapulpa 28-16
3Q Sapulpa 19-17
4Q CPHS 25-21

Free Throws: SHS 25-of-30, CPHS 14-of-17.
Field Goals: SHS 25-of-50, CPHS 28-of-60.
Fouls: SHS 17, CPHS 18.

Scoring: (SHS) Ballance 35, Smith 30, Phipps 15, Hoggatt 3, Williams 2. (CPHS) Keener 31, Colt Savage 22, Taber 6, Garbey 5, Price 4, Cale Savage 3, Golightly 2. 

(CPHS only)
Offensive Rebounds: Keener 7, Colt Savage 3, Garbey 1, Price 1.
Defensive Rebounds: Keener 4, Colt Savage 3, Cale Savage 3, Price 3, Garbey 1, Wash 1.
Assists: Colt Savage 3, Keener 1.
Steals: Colt Savage 2, Taber 1.
Blocks: Keener 4, Price 1.
Fouls: Taber 5, Colt Savage 4, Garbey 4, Price 2, Keener 1, Wash 1, Durkee 1.

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The No. 12 ranked Sapulpa High School boys' basketball team (17-7) extended their season by at least one more night by putting an end to the season for their Highway 97 rivals from Sand Springs. The Charles Page High School Sandites (12-14) battled back from a 23-point deficit in the third quarter of the Area Consolation Semifinals, but ultimately fell 85-73 at Whitey Ford arena in Bixby Friday night. 

It was a shootout from the very beginning as University of Central Oklahoma-signed senior Kyle Keener drew first blood for the Sandites off an assist from Colt Savage. Keenan Ballance hit a pair from the stripe, Savage reclaimed the lead with a two-point jump shot, then Julian Smith did the same to tie it right back up. The back and forth affair continued with the Chieftains first taking the lead at 9-8 off a three-point basket from Ballance. Ballance scored again from two-point range then it was back and forth again with Sapulpa leading 17-15 at the buzzer.

Smith made it a two-score game with a pair of free throws to start the second, but Keener and Jacob Garbey scored back-to-back to tie it at 19-all. Ballance struck again from three-point range, then Keener hit double digits with 5:30 left in the half.

Then Sapulpa began to pull away. Smith hit two from the stripe and Ballance snagged a steal and scored in transition. Not to be outdone, Smith did the same, and did it twice in a row to make it 30-21. The Chieftains were deadly from three-point range, shooting six-of-eleven in the first half and slowly deepening the gap to 45-31 by halftime.

Both teams had two players in double digits by the final buzzer of the half. Ballance and Smith led all scorers with 20 and 19 respectively, followed by Keener with 15 and Savage with 12.

Senior Josh Taber started the second half hot for Sand Springs, scoring twice in the first minute to cut things to 48-37, but Sapulpa scored six-straight before Matt Price made his way into the scorebook with a layup. It wasn't enough to stymie the Chieftain tide, however. Hunter Hoggatt got in on the action with a three, Smith made a three-point play off a Savage foul, then scored through contact once again to make it 62-39 with 2:10 in the third.

Just as things were beginning to look bleak, the Sandites went on a nine-point run. Colt Savage hit a two, younger brother Cale Savage hit his first bucket of the game with a three ball, the elder Savage hit two from the charity stripe, and Keener hit a layup to cut it to 62-48. Ballance got the final say of the period and the Chieftains entered the final stretch 64-48.

Keener dominated the basket in the fourth quarter, scoring thrice on offensive rebounds, and picked up penalty shots on two of them all in the first few minutes. A basket by Price cut things to 71-58, but the deficit would remain in that region for the duration. The closest the Sandites would get was 78-68, but as soon as Sand Springs would start to draw near, the Chieftains would surge forward once again, ultimately holding out for the 85-73 win. 

Three players ended up north of thirty in the wild affair, and five broke double digits. Ballance led all scorers with 35 points, and teammates Smith and Trey Phipps contributed 30 and 15, respectively. Keener ended his high-school career with a bang and led the Sandites for the eighth time this season with his fifth double-double. The future Broncho scored 31 points to beat his previous career-high of 22, and snatched eleven rebounds. Junior Colt Savage posted 22 points with six rebounds.

The Chieftains will take on No. 7 Booker T. Washington (18-7) in the Area Consolation Finals Saturday at 6:30 p.m., with the winner advancing to the State Tournament next week. The two teams have yet to meet this season. 

Union 66 BTW 46

1Q Union 17-2
2Q Union 12-10
3Q Union 19-10
4Q BTW 24-18

Free Throws: Union 18-of-26. BTW 8-of-15.
Field Goals: Union 22-of-51. BTW 18-of-57.

Scoring: (Union) Chargois 19, Rodriguez 17, Johnson 13, Jamerson 10, Garcia 6, Banks 1. (BTW) Fuqua 20, Bereal 9, Johnson 8, Lucas 7, Jones 2.

The first round of the Area Championship wasn't much of a surprise as the undefeated and undisputed No. 1 ranked Union Redskins (26-0) rolled to a massive 66-46 victory over No. 7 Booker T. Washington (18-7).

The first quarter and a half were no contest as Union took a 9-0 lead out of the gate with a pair of field goals from both Ethan Chargois and Adrian Rodriguez. RJ Fuqua got his team on the scoreboard, but four minutes later the deficit was 17-2 to start the second period.

The Redskins continued to wreak havoc, pushing it to 26-2 before Triston Johnson got the Hornets back on track with a pair of free throws. Fuqua went to work with back-to-back transition layups with 2:00 minutes left in the half. 

The Hornets struggled with accuracy and were one-of-eighteen on field goals before Fuqua found his feet. Johnson went back to the line for two more, then added the first and only non-Fuqua field goal of the half.

By the time the two teams headed to the locker room the Hornets had cut their deficit by seven, but still trailed by a lopsided score of 29-12. While the Redskins were giving the basket a beating with twelve goals on 24 attempts, the Hornets were having trouble even finding the rim and were only 4-of-23.

Chargois kicked off the second half from three-point range, then Ahjae Johnson completed a three-point play before Fuqua scored in transition. Demarco Jones made his way onto the scoreboard for the Hornets, but N'Kiel Jamerson negated the damage from the free-throw line. 

Fuqua continued to be the driving force for the Hornets, but by the time he broke double-digits, three Redskins had already done so. Booker T. improved on their accuracy, shooting five-of-fifteen in the third, but they still trailed 48-22 after the third. Booker T. won the final stanza 24-18, but they were too deep in the hole and the top-seeded Redskins prevailed 66-46.

Fuqua led all scorers with 20 points, but was the only Hornet in double digits. Four Union players broke double, led by Chargois with 19. Rodriguez scored 17, Johnson posted 13, and Jamerson contributed 10.