No. 1 CPHS Wrestling leads State Championship after first round with 8 semifinalists

Top-ranked 220 pound senior Delvin Jordan pinned his first-round opponent at the OSSAA State Championship. (Photo: Scott Emigh)

Top-ranked 220 pound senior Delvin Jordan pinned his first-round opponent at the OSSAA State Championship. (Photo: Scott Emigh)

6A Top-Ten Team Scores:

  1. No. 1 Sand Springs (25)
  2. No. 2 Choctaw (21.5)
  3. No. 3 Broken Arrow (21)
  4. No. 13 Norman North (11)
  5. Midwest City (10)
    No. 8 Stillwater (10)
  6. No. 4 Edmond North (9)
  7. No. 6 Ponca City (8)
    No. 5 Yukon (8)
  8. No. 11 Edmond Memorial (6)
    Owasso (6)

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The No. 1 ranked Charles Page High School wrestling team got off to a solid start at the OSSAA 6A State Championship Friday afternoon at the Oklahoma State Fairgrounds. Eight of the eleven State Qualifiers won their first round matches, and the Sandites had the top team score by a narrow margin over the defending State Champions from No. 2 Choctaw. 

It's a three-way race for the top with Choctaw and No. 3 Broken Arrow right behind the Sandites. The Yellowjackets and Tigers each have six wrestlers remaining in the championship bracket.

106-pound sophomore Riley Weir (39-6 season, 60-18 career) met Edmond North freshman Nate Becker (22-13) in his quarterfinal. Weir took a 5-1 lead into the second period and started on bottom, then quickly reversed in the first twenty seconds. He did it again to start the third period and held on for a 9-1 major decision. He will face Choctaw freshman Gabe Johnson (34-6) in the semifinals.

113 senior Tanner Ward (33-10, 109-22) took on Mustang sophomore Cameron Picklo (29-8) and recorded a takedown in the first twenty seconds, then cut his foe loose soon after. He snagged another score midway through the first period, added a pair of back points, cut his opponent loose, then took him down again to end the first period 8-3. Picklo started the second period on top and Ward easily got the escape, then added a takedown soon after. Picklo got a reversal and nearly put the Sandite in danger, but Ward managed to stay off his back and recovered for a reversal and 14-5 third period lead. The final stretch started neutral and Ward picked up a couple more takedowns for a 16-5 major decision. He will face Westmoore senior Canon Randall (36-4) in the semifinals.

120 senior Michael Ritchey (36-10, 65-34) and Choctaw junior Andy Schlaepfer (27-16) hit the mat early and struggled for control, ending up in a stalemate before the Sandite finally came out on top with seven seconds left. They started the second period neutral and it went the same as the first, hotly contested with one stalemate, and one Sandite takedown, once again in the final ten seconds. Ritchey started the final period on bottom and escaped thirty seconds in, then took control with a minute left and held on for the 7-0 decision. He will face Edmond North senior Paxton Rosen (36-2) in the semifinals.

126 junior Blake Sargent (37-10, 89-24) battled Choctaw junior Connor Holman (35-6) and gave up a takedown late in the first period. He started the second period on top and cut his opponent loose early on, then Holman added another pair of points towards the end and took a 5-0 lead into the final stretch. Sargent started the third period on the defensive end and escaped in the first few seconds, but was unable to score. Holman added another takedown, Sargent cut loose, and the Yellowjacket won by 7-2 decision. He will face Ponca City sophomore Spencer Schickram (37-9) in the consolationquarterfinal.

132 Oklahoma State University-signed senior Daton Fix (45-0, 163-0) easily handled Midwest City senior Marquez Edwards (24-8), scoring a takedown for nearfall points in the first thirty seconds. He cut his foe loose, scored, cut him loose again, scored again, and continued to run up the score to 11-3 at the end of the first period. He started the second with a reversal and secured the pin in 2:43. He will face Ponca City junior Dylan Schickram (38-12) in the semis.

138 senior Jack Karstetter (30-1, 103-16) had a scrappy competitor in Edmond Memorial junior Connor Simpson (21-8). The Sandite handily prevailed, however, taking a 7-0 lead into the second period with two sets of back points. He started on bottom and immediately escaped five seconds in, then added a second takedown for a 10-1 third period advantage. He reversed to start the final stretch and cut Simpson loose to look for bonus points, but the two remained neutral and Karstetter got the 12-2 major decision. He will face Ponca City senior Dawson Hunt (29-14) in the semifinals.

145 senior Beau Bratcher (43-7, 134-30) battled Westmoore sophomore Zach Johnson (25-7) and scored his first takedown at the minute mark. He started the second period on defense and scored an early escape and held on for a 3-0 lead in the third. Johnson selected defense, and remained there for the duration, giving Bratcher a 3-0 decision. He will face Yukon senior and defending State Champion Jaxen Gilmore (27-2) in the semifinals.

152 junior Payton Scott (37-3, 58-11) took on Choctaw junior Jeff Speer (16-8) and scored a takedown in the first thirty seconds, and cut his foe loose immediately. He added two more by the end of the first and entered the second stretch 6-2. He started with an immediate escape, then took Speer down for a fall at 2:19. He will take on Midwest City senior Rober Walker (28-6) in the semifinals.

160 sophomore Noah Almy (24-18) took on Choctaw junior and defending State Champion Jaryn Curry (35-3) and gave up an early takedown, but escaped soon after. Curry added another score and cut the Sandite loose, then repeated for a 6-3 lead. Almy started the second period on top, but Curry broke free and scored another trio of takedowns in the first minute and entered the third period with a 15-6 lead. They started neutral and Curry scored a takedown and a pair of back points before securing the 22-7 tech fall in 4:58 after a stalling penalty on Almy. The Sandite will return to action against Edmond Santa Fe junior Williams Depona (16-13) in the consolation quarterfinals.

170 senior Zane Basma (26-4, 88-29) gave up an early takedown to Edmond Memorial junior Sam Hensley (36-7), but quickly escaped and scored his own takedown for a trio of nearfall points. The Sandite started the second period neutral with a 6-2 lead, but gave up another takedown at the end of the period. Basma started the final stanza on bottom and quickly escaped, but Hensley scored a last second takedown for back points for the 9-7 decision. Basma will take on Ponca City junior Lane Newlin (31-14) in the consolation quarterfinal.

220 senior Delvin Jordan (43-2, 74-14) took on Westmoore senior Jonathan Martinez (15-8) and the two were evenly matched through the first. Jordan took a 1-0 lead with a second period escape then added a takedown soon after. Slow and steady won the race and Jordan worked his foe into a cradle at 3:42. He will take on Choctaw junior Caulin Poole (25-10) in the semifinals.

The first round of consolations will begin at 5:00 p.m., followed by the semifinals at 7:15 p.m.

Savage and Keener combine for 46 in close loss at No. 8 Broken Arrow

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

BAHS 63 CPHS 57

1Q Broken Arrow 21-16
2Q Broken Arrow 15-5
3Q Sand Springs 16-7
4Q All 20-20

Free Throws: CPHS 15-of-22 BAHS 12-of-24
Field Goals: CPHS 19-of-45 BAHS 21-of-43
Fouls: CPHS 18, BAHS 20

Scoring: (CPHS) Colt Savage 24, Keener 22, Garbey 9, Taber 2. (BAHS) Huffman 14, Dennis 13, Hall 9, Lane 8, Smith 6, Everette 4, Boyer 4, Ensminger 3, Gonzales 2.

(Sand Springs only)
Offensive Rebounds: Keener 6, Colt Savage 1, Price 1, Garbey 1.
Defensive Rebounds: Keener 8, Colt Savage 2, Price 2, Cale Savage 1, Garbey 1, Golightly 1.
Steals: Keener 3, Taber 1, Cale Savage 1.
Assists: Taber 1.
Blocks: Keener 3. 
Fouls: Price 5, Keener 4, Taber 3, Colt Savage 2, Garbey 2, Wash 1, Golightly 1.

Sand Springs won the second half, but they couldn't win the war. No. 8 ranked Broken Arrow (15-5) hosted the unranked Sandites (9-11) Tuesday afternoon, and were nearly caught sleeping. After rolling to a 36-21 halftime advantage, they barely stayed above water in the final stretch.

The Sandites tried to hang tight with their foes throughout the first quarter, but trailed by seven multiple times before a two-point shot from Josh Taber cut it to 21-16 at the end of the period.

Broken Arrow brought the rain to start the second quarter, as Braden Boyer, Camryn Dennis, Cory Lane, and Taylor Gonzales all hit field goals to make it 30-16 before Colt Savage broke the streak with a pair of free throws. Jacob Garbey scored the only other Sandite points of the quarter on a three pointer, and the Tigers took a 36-22 advantage into the locker room.

Whatever Coach Savage said to his boys at halftime worked and they came out to score the first seven points of the second half. Tony Hall regained the double digit lead with a three-pointer, Keener hit a two, Boyer hit a pair from the free throw line, then the Sandites went on another seven-point run. Caleb Huffman hit a pair of free throws to end the quarter, but Sand Springs won the third 16-7.

Huffman started off the final stanza with a three, but Savage scored six-straight to make it 46-43. Huffman posted another three, followed by a pair of free throws from Garbey, then Dennis hit a two. Keener scored five-straight and the Sandites were officially within a point.

Then came the foul war. Keener committed two fouls in a row. Dennis sank both of his. Boyer missed his fortunately, but the Tigers went right back to the line on a foul from Savage. Dennis missed his 1-1, but Huffman rebounded for two. Keener was next to go to the line but missed his second shot, rebounded, and missed the field goal.

Dennis hit a layup on the next possession, then Taber sent Major Smith to the line for two.

With 48.6 left, Savage scored a layup to cut it to 59-53, then Keener blocked a shot on the Tigers' corresponding possession and returned it for two. Price fouled Smith, who made one, then Huffman rebounded the second and sent it to Lane for a bucket.

By this point both teams were in the double and Huffman was next to the line and made one. Savage rebounded the second, but it was too late in the game, and his deep three fell short and the home team prevailed 63-57 after tying 20-20 in the fourth.

Savage led all scorers with 26, followed by Keener with 22. Keener's 22 tied his career-high, and he also pulled in 14 rebounds for his second double-double of the season. Huffman and Dennis were the only Tigers in double digits, but nine players got on the board for Broken Arrow, as compared to four for Sand Springs.

The Sandites will return to action Friday when they host No. 18 Bartlesville (9-9), who has already beaten them 53-39 and 63-53 this season. The Tigers will host No. 1 Union (20-0), who defeated them 60-56 in December. 

No. 3 Sand Springs rolls over No. 15 Broken Arrow 54-32 behind Kersgieter's 16

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

CPHS 54 BAHS 32

1Q Sand Springs 11-6
2Q Sand Springs 11-5
3Q Sand Springs 16-7
4Q Sand Springs 16-14

Free Throws: CPHS 11-of-16 BAHS 5-of-6
Field Goals: CPHS 19-of-46 BAHS 10-of-42
Penalties: CPHS 7 BAHS 12

Scoring: (CPHS) Kersgieter 16, Johnson 7, Regalado 7, Pennington 7, Mutiri 7, McGee 6, Collins 4. (BAHS) Cuellar 9, Smallwood 7, Callen 6, Moore 4, Bowker 3, West 3.

(Sand Springs only)
Offensive Rebounds: Mutiri 7, Pennington 1, Kersgieter 1, Johnson 1, McGee 1.
Defensive Rebounds: Pennington 7, Kersgieter 5, Johnson 5, Mutiri 3, McGee 2, Taber 2, Collins 1. 
Steals: Johnson 2, Pennington 1, Kersgieter 1, McGee 1, Collins 1.
Assists: Pennington 4, Kersgieter 1, McGee 1.
Blocks: Mutiri 2, Kersgieter 1.
Fouls: Taber 3, Regalado 1, McGee 1, Mutiri 1, Johnson 1.
 

The No. 3 ranked Charles Page High School girls basketball team (17-1) visited the No. 15 Broken Arrow Lady Tigers (11-9) and dealt the home team a twenty-point loss for the second time this season. Sophomore standout Holly Kersgieter led all scorers with 16 points, and four Lady Sandites scored seven-apiece. None of the Lady Tigers broke double digits. 

It took the Sandites a few possessions before they found their offensive mojo, leading only 11-6 after the first quarter while shooting 30% on field goals. Jalise Smallwood hit a three for the Lady Tigers to start the second period, followed by a two-point response from Kierra McGee.

The Sandites finally turned up the heat midway through the quarter and shot 50%. Sydney Pennington snagged a steal, was fouled on a layup, and made the free throw. Holly Kersgieter scored on back-to-back possessions and the visitors held a 20-9 lead. Smallwood put an end to the streak, but Pennington got the final say of the half, rebounding a free throw from Mutiri for the final points, then rebounded Kinsey Callen on the opposite end of the court to carry the 22-11 advantage into the locker room.

Sand Springs came out pumped after halftime and scored the first points of the half on a free throw from Mutiri and a layup from Pennington. Angelica Cuellar hit a two, then Kersgieter, Cuellar, and Bella Regalado all sank threes. Danyell Moore hit a pair from the charity stripe on a foul from Regalado, then sent Regalado to the stripe for a pair. Johnson closed out the period with two field goals and a penalty shot for the 38-18 lead.

The fourth quarter started out even better for the Sandites. Mutiri hit a two and Kersgieter added a three before Brook Bowker hit a three for the Tigers. The Sandites went on a seven-point run from there and finally subbed in the second string with 3:00 remaining and a 50-21 advantage. Jessica Collins got into the scoring action for Sand Springs and finished with four points as the home team outscored the visitors 8-4 in the final minutes to end the game 54-32.

The Lady Sandites will return to action Friday when they host No. 14 Bartlesville (11-7), who they have already defeated 51-34 earlier this season. Broken Arrow will host No. 17 Union (10-9), who they lost to 41-36 earlier this year.

Frontier Valley Conference Men's Basketball Standings, Week Nine

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The 2016-2017 season is well under way and the Frontier Valley Conference is as competitive as ever. Eight out of ten FVC teams are ranked within their divisions and the Union Redskins are currently the undefeated unanimous pick as the No. 1 team in the state. They are also the only remaining team undefeated in conference play. The FVC is currently ranked third out of the five 6A conferences in overall strength.

No. 1 Union (12-0, 6-0) holds the best defense in the whole state, allowing only 48 points per game, on average. They have the third-ranked offense in the conference and win by an average of 15.8 points. In the last two weeks they have topped Bishop Kelley 65-42, Owasso 62-39, and Muskogee 78-42. SMU-commit Ethan Chargois scored 22 against both Kelley and Muskogee, but sat out Owasso with a hand injury. In that game Mo Garcia stepped up to lead the team with 20 points. 

No. 9 Muskogee (8-2, 5-1) holds the second-best offense in the conference and the fourth-highest margin of victory. In the last two weeks they have topped Sand Springs 47-42 and Jenks 85-59, but were just hammered 78-42 by Union in what was expected to be a somewhat close match. Brooks Haddock has been the consistent top dog this season and posted 27 against Jenks, but could only muster a team-best 12 against the Redskins. Tyreece Berry has been back in action since the new year and led the team with 18 against Sand Springs. 

No. 13 Sapulpa (7-2, 4-1) has the top-rated offense in the conference, averaging more than 68 points per game. Both of their conference games this year have been close ones, 59-57 over Broken Arrow and 72-68 over Sand Springs. Keenan Balance led the Chieftains to a come-from-behind victory over their archrivals from Sand Springs with 23 points, closely followed by Keenan Balance with 21. Balance also posted a team-best 20 points against Broken Arrow.

No. 11 Broken Arrow (8-4, 4-2) holds the second-best offense in the conference, third in the state, allowing only 49.1 points per game for the third-best margin of victory in the FVC. The Tigers have had a tough start to 2017, falling 59-57 to Sapulpa and only topping Jenks 46-38 in a game that saw the entire starting line benched by a frustrated head coach. Make no mistake, the powerhouse program is still a solid contender for the conference title if they can over come Muskogee next week. 

No. 19 Bartlesville (6-5, 3-2) is middle of the pack both offensively and defensively, but has still managed to come out on top more often than not. The Bruins fell 76-68 to Bixby in triple overtime last week and had their game against Sapulpa canceled due to weather, but got back in the win column Tuesday with a 64-57 victory over Bishop Kelley. Barron Tanner has been the top dog in both of the last two games, scoring 23 against Bixby and 28 against Kelley. 

5A No. 14 Bishop Kelley (4-6, 2-4) has done a good job keeping up with the 6A public school competitors, but dropped both of their last two conference games. The Comets hold the fourth-best defense in the FVC, but fell 65-42 to Union and 64-57 to Bartlesville. Ryan Gendron posted 18 against Bartlesville, closely followed by Alex Woodruff with 17. 

No. 16 Owasso (7-5, 2-4) got off to a rough start with four straight losses to start the season, but have been making a solid comeback since the new year. After topping 5A No. 6 East Central (8-5) and No. 8 Booker T. Washington (9-3) to sweep the Skiatook Invitational, the Rams returned to conference play with a bang. They defeated Jenks 66-52 and Bixby 62-50, but fell 62-39 to Union. Jake Thompson posted 10 against both Jenks and Union, with 15 against Bixby. Josh Proctor led the team with 16 against Jenks and 13 against Bixby. Courtre led against Bixby with 17 and also had 12 against Jenks. 

Bixby (5-7, 2-4) won a 76-68 triple-overtime shootout with Bartlesville, but fell 76-71 to Sand Springs and 62-50 to Owasso. Will Fiser scored 17 against Bartlesville, 22 against Sand Springs, and 11 against Owasso. 

No. 18 Sand Springs (6-6, 1-5) notched their first conference win with a 76-71 performance against Bixby, but fell 47-42 to Muskogee and 72-68 to Sapulpa after leading for most of the game. The Sandites have the fourth-best offense and third-best defense in the conference. Colt Savage posted 20 against Muskogee and Sapulpa and 34 against Bixby. Jacob Garbey had 21 against Bixby and Kyle Keener had 21 against Sapulpa. 

Jenks (1-9, 0-6) is still looking for their first conference win, despite a 21-point performance from Cole Surrett against Owasso and a 17-point performance from Eli Harris against Broken Arrow. The Trojans fell 66-52 to Owasso, 85-59 to Muskogee, and 46-38 to Broken Arrow. 

Conference Strength:

  1. Big Ten (51.5)
  2. Central Oklahoma (48)
  3. Frontier Valley (45.4)
  4. Green Country (43.1)
  5. All-City 32.09

FVC Leading Scorers (points-per-game)

  1. Colt Savage (Sand Springs) 21.2
  2. Brooks Haddock (Muskogee) 20.7
  3. Keenan Balance (Sapulpa) 19.9
  4. Eli Harris (Jenks) 19.7
  5. Caleb Huffman (Broken Arrow) 18.9
  6. Julian Smith (Sapulpa) 17.1
  7. Ethan Chargois (Union) 17.1
  8. Kyle Keener (Sand Springs) 16.6
  9. TyReece Berry (Muskogee) 16.3
  10. Josh Proctor (Owasso) 15.8

January conference schedule:
1/24 Union @ Sand Springs
1/24 Bartlesville @ Muskogee
1/24 Broken Arrow @ Owasso
1/24 Bixby @ Sapulpa
1/24 Bishop Kelley @ Jenks
1/27 Sapulpa @ Union
1/27 Muskogee @ Broken Arrow
1/27 Sand Springs @ Owasso
1/27 Jenks @ Bartlesville
1/27 Bishop Kelley @ Bixby
1/31 Bixby @ Union
1/31 Muskogee @ Bishop Kelley
1/31 Broken Arrow @ Bartlesville
1/31 Owasso @ Sapulpa
1/31 Sand Springs @ Jenks
 

Frontier Valley Conference Mens' Basketball standings

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The 2016-2017 High School basketball season is well under way, and is shaping up to be a good one for the Frontier Valley Conference. Seven out of ten FVC teams are ranked within their divisions. Union and Muskogee currently lead the pack with each being undefeated both within the conference and overall. 

The FVC is currently fourth out of the five 6A conferences in strength of schedule, but the season is still young and they could easily move up a few spots as the season progresses. 

No. 3 Union (3-0, 3-0) holds the best defense in the conference, allowing only 47 points-per-game on average. They have the fourth-best offense and the second-best margin of victory. They started their season with a 50-46 victory over Bartlesville, smoked Jenks 66-40, then topped Broken Arrow 60-56. 6'7" Southern Methodist University committed senior Ethan Chargois leads the Redskins with 15 points per game, including a season-high 23 against Jenks.

No. 11 Muskogee (6-0, 3-0) leads the conference in offense, averaging 69 points per game, and is seventh in defense, allowing 56 for the best margin of victory in the FVC. They edged out Owasso 65-64 in overtime during their season opener, topped Bixby 65-63, and beat Sapulpa 58-50. 6'2" junior Brooks Haddock has led the team in the last five games, averaging 20.3 points. TyReece Berry scored 25 in the season opener but has been out of commission since then. Berry is expected to return after the new year, setting up the Roughers for one of the top offenses in the division.

No. 10 Broken Arrow (5-2, 3-1) holds the No. 5 offense, No. 2 defense, and No. 4 margin of victory in the conference. They edged out Bishop Kelley 44-41, topped Bixby 53-35, and came from behind to beat Sand Springs 55-54. In their last game they narrowly fell 60-56 to the Redskins. 6'2" point guard Caleb Huffman has led the Tigers in six out of seven games this season with an average score of 21. 

No. 13 Sapulpa (4-2, 2-1) holds the No. 2 offense, No. 9 defense, and No. 5 margin of victory in the conference. They topped Jenks 78-70 in the highest-scoring conference game of the year, then beat Bishop Kelley 60-50 before falling 58-50 to Muskogee. Three Chieftains are averaging in double digits, led by Keenan Ballance with 19 points per game.

No. 17 Bartlesville (3-3, 2-1) is ninth in offense, fifth in defense, and sixth in margin of victory. They topped Sand Springs 53-39 and Owasso 47-42 before falling 50-46 to Union. Four different players have led the team and two are averaging in the double. AJ Archambo leads the team with 13 points per game.

5A No. 16 Bishop Kelley (4-3, 2-2) is eighth in the conference in offense, fifth in defense, and seventh in margin of victory. They lost their season opener 44-41 to Broken Arrow, defeated Sand Springs 45-42, fell 60-50 to Sapulpa, and edged out Owasso 59-57. Three Comets have led the team in scoring and two are averaging double digits. Ryan Gendron leads the team with 15 points per game.

No. 18 Bixby (3-3, 1-2) is seventh in offense, sixth in defense, and eighth in margin of victory. They defeated Jenks 49-36, but fell 53-35 to Broken Arrow and 65-63 to Muskogee. The Spartans are led by Joey Homan with 16 points per game.

Sand Springs (3-3, 0-3) is third in offense, second in defense, and third in margin of victory. They have yet to secure a conference win, falling 53-39 to Bartlesville, 45-42 to Bishop Kelley, and 55-54 to Broken Arrow. They led the Tigers though the entire fourth before a late turnover gave BA the win. Junior Colt Savage has led his team in five of six games this season and averages 21 points per game.

Owasso (0-3, 0-3) is sixth in offense, eighth in defense, and is still looking for their first win this season. They fell 47-42 to Bartlesville, 65-64 to Muskogee, and 59-57 to Bishop Kelley. They're led by Josh Proctor with 17 points per game, including 27 against Muskogee. 

Jenks (0-7, 0-3) is ninth in offense, tenth in defense, and is still looking for a win. They fell 78-70 to Sapulpa, 66-40 to Union, and 49-36 to Bixby. 

Conference Strength:

  1. Central Oklahoma (51)
  2. Big Ten (49.7)
  3. Green Country (48)
  4. Frontier Valley (40.8)
  5. All-City (32.5)

FVC Leading Scorers (points-per-game):

  1. TyReece Berry (Muskogee) 25.0
  2. Caleb Huffman (Broken Arrow) 21.1
  3. Colt Savage (Sand Springs) 21.0
  4. Brooks Haddock (Muskogee) 20.3
  5. Keenan Ballance (Sapulpa) 19.6
  6. Josh Proctor (Owasso) 17.7
  7. Julian Smith (Sapulpa) 17.0
  8. Joey Homan (Bixby) 16.3
  9. Ryan Gendron (Bishop Kelley) 15.9
  10. Kyle Keener (Sand Springs) 15.5

Editor's Note: We are currently missing individual scoring results for several games. Please forward results to SanditePrideNews@gmail.com.

Missing:

  • 12/6 Jenks vs Sapulpa
  • 12/8 Jenks vs Edmond North
  • 12/9 Jenks vs Edmond Memorial
  • 12/9 Muskogee vs Enid
  • 12/10 Jenks vs Casady
  • 12/10 Bixby vs East Central
  • 12/13 Jenks vs Union
  • 12/16 Bixby vs Jenks

No. 10 Broken Arrow scores 55-54 come-from-behind win at Sand Springs; Savage scores 22

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The unranked Charles Page High School varsity basketball team (0-3) was a minute away from wrapping up their first win of the season, leading 54-53 over No. 10 Broken Arrow (5-1). With 1:05 to play, all they had to do was drain the clock. Instead, sophomore Cale Savage saw an opening and passed the ball to Kyle Keener who appeared to make the two point basket. The goal was called off on a travel, however, and the Tigers got the ball to score and held on for the win.

1Q Broken Arrow 16-13
2Q Sand Springs 14-12
3Q Sand Springs 16-13
4Q Broken Arrow 14-11

Scoring: (Sand Springs) Colt Savage 22, Keener 19, Durkee 8, Cale Savage 2, Taber 2, Wash 1. (Broken Arrow) Huffman 29, Hall 11, Boyer 11, Smith 2, Hughes 2.

(Sand Springs Only)
Offensive Rebounds: Keener 3, Garbey 1, Colt Savage 1. 
Defensive Rebounds: Garbey 4, Keener 2, Colt Savage 2, Durkee 2, Wash 1, Cale Savage 1.
Assists: Taber 2, Colt Savage 1, Garbey 1, Durkee 1, Wash 1.
Blocks: Keener 4.

In the first two games of the season, the Sandites led going into the half and gave up the wins after falling apart in the third quarter. Only four players scored in either of the first two games as the mostly young and inexperienced team had difficulty in sharing the workload. Things were far different this time around as six Sandites got on the scoreboard, two doubled, and the boys led the Tigers through the entire fourth quarter before giving up the final basket of the game.

University of Central Oklahoma-signed senior Kyle Keener posted 19 points in the game and junior Colt Savage led his team with 22, but the remaining 13 points were equally impressive for the Sandites as they finally proved what their fans knew all along, that this was a team that could execute and win. Sophomore Cole Durkee posted a career-high 8 points, and Caleb Wash, Cale Savage, and Josh Taber also got on the board in the back-and-forth thriller.

Though the Sandites are still searching for a win, they have effectively competed against a top-ten team and very nearly won. They were outstanding on offense, shooting eight-of-ten from the charity stripe and 21-of-36 on field goals in their best performance of the season.

The game was back and forth from the beginning. The home team took a 4-0 lead off of layups by Keener and Savage, and the Tigers responded with two pointers from Major Smith and Caleb Huffman. Huffman was the game's leading scorer with 29 points. Colt Savage and Huffman were locked in a shootout in the first quarter with Savage scoring nine and Huffman scoring fourteen to give the Tigers a 16-13 lead.

Durkee started off the second quarter with his first goal of the season, followed by a free throw from Wash and a two by Colt Savage. The Sandites outscored their opponents 14-12 in the second quarter as the two teams exchanged the lead six times and the Tigers ended up with a 28-27 halftime advantage.

The third quarter was equally contested as the lead changed six more times before settling on the Sandites. The home team led by as much as 43-38 before Huffman drilled a three to end the period down 43-41. The Sandites never relinquished the lead in the fourth quarter until the traveling call on Keener. They were up 54-48 after a three from Durkee, then the Tigers went to work.

Tony Hall hit a two. Colt Savage had the opportunity to make a free throw, but missed and ended up fouling Huffman on a two. The Broken Arrow junior sank his free throw to make it a one-point game. After the turnover from Keener, the Tigers went full offense and rebounded four times before finally connecting on the go-ahead score from Braden Boyer. 

With three seconds left, senior Jacob Garbey launched a three that bounced back and fourth within the rim before being ejected into the waiting arms of the nearest Tiger.

The Sandites will return to action this weekend at the Tulsa Memorial High School festival. They will play the Wichita Defenders Thursday at 8:00 p.m., the OKC Storm Friday at 6:30 p.m., and the Northwest Arkansas Hornets Saturday at 1:00 p.m.

Lady Sandites fall in straight sets to Broken Arrow despite being matched offensively

Photo: Morgan Miller

Photo: Morgan Miller

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The No. 15 ranked Charles Page High School varsity volleyball team (21-12) hosted the No. 6 Broken Arrow Tigers (18-5) Tuesday night and battled valiantly through the match, dropping three close sets of 23-25, 23-25, and 21-25. Offensively the Sandites actually had the edge with 45 kills to the Tigers' 44, but the Broken Arrow team was more disciplined defensively and committed far less errors.

Sand Springs: 45 kills, 31 errors
Broken Arrow: 44 kills, 22 errors

SS Kills: Mutiri 22, Kersgieter 7, Youngblood 5, Leslie 3, Burris 3, Mudd 1, Cypert 1.
BA Kills: Bledsoe 19, Wratten 9, Smith 9, Blackburn 2, Bercher 2, Cowan 1. 

SS Assists: Burris 16, Ward 6, Cypert 2, Leslie 1.
BA Assists: Blackburn 31

SS Digs: Leslie 14, Taylor 11, Kersgieter 6, Mutiri 5, Burris 2, Mudd 2, Ward 2, Ward 2, Cypert 1. 

All three sets were back-and-forth affairs with the scoring being tied for nearly a quarter of the match. Broken Arrow led for the majority of the first and second sets, but the Sandites actually had the edge in game three before the Tigers came from behind to spoil it.

Sand Springs committed fourteen kills in the first set with eight of them coming from junior Ohio State University commit Gloria Mutiri. Madison Burris registered five assists in the first game. The most the Sandites ever trailed by was 17-13 before going on a four-point run to tie it up thanks to a kill from Mutiri, an ace from Holly Kersgieter, and a tipped ball from freshman Devree Youngblood. 

It was a back-and-forth game from there until an error by Makina Wratten tied it up at 20-20 and the Sandites took the lead on an ace from Burris. Kamryn Smith tied it back up at 21-21, but Mutiri scored back-to-back kills off sets from Burris and Makenna Cypert for the 23-21 advantage.

Those would be the last points the Sandites would score, however, as Mackenzie Backburn set up Mia Bledsoe for back-to-back kills, followed by back-to-back aces from Julia Bercher to win the game 25-23. Both teams committed nine errors apiece in the first set, but the Tigers had 16 kills to the Sandites' 14. 

Sand Springs scored the first kill of game two thanks to Youngblood, but the Tigers won the next four with a pair of kills from Wratten and an ace from Smith. Sand Springs one-upped the Tigers with five-straight rallies off two kills from Mutiri and a combined block by Mutiri and Cypert to lead 6-4. They held that lead till 7-7 when Blackburn set up Bledsoe for back-to-back kills. The Sandites struggled to keep the lead from there and by 11-10, it was the Tigers with the advantage.

The Sandites didn't lead again for the duration of the game, but they tied it up six more times before Broken Arrow took the penultimate lead at 17-16. Sand Springs got close at 24-23 off a Mutiri kill and Burris assist, but Blackburn scored on a fake set tipped ball to secure another 25-23 victory. Once again it was Mutiri who led the scoring for the Sandites with nine points, and Burris registered seven assists.

Sand Springs got off to another great start in the final set and lead for 45% of the game. Wratten scored the first kill of the set, but Lee Leslie tied it up, Mutiri took the lead on a kill, Burris served an ace, and Mutiri registered a solo block for the 4-1 advantage. Broken Arrow didn't manage to tie it till 10-10 off a Sandite error.

From there the game was back-and-forth. Burris, Cypert, and Bledsoe all hit aces. The game tied at 19-19 off a Tiger error, but once they regained the lead, they held it till the end and won 25-21.

Errors have been the defining factor in nearly every Sandite loss this season as the high-powered Sandite offense led by Mutiri, Kersgieter, and Youngblood has little difficulty in keeping up in a shootout. Any time the communication is good, the Sandites win with incredible numbers. But when they start building campfires and colliding, that's when it falls apart. Lately, however, they've done far more destroying than falling apart.

The Sandites upset No. 14 Bixby 3-2, went 6-2 at the Catoosa Tournament, upset 4A No. 1 Metro Christian 2-0, and upset No. 10 Union 3-2 as well. Since the month began, their only losses have been 3-0 to No. 5 Owasso, 2-0 to 4A No. 3 Victory Christian, and 2-0 to 4A No. 1 Metro Christian, who they split with. The errors that plagued the beginning of the season are becoming fewer, the defense is getting tighter, and the offense is continuing to give it 100% all the way till the end. 

The Sandites have only two matches left before the Regional tournament and both are away games. They will travel to 5A No. 5 Collinsville (19-9) this Thursday at 6:00 p.m., and will take on their Highway 97 rivals from Sapulpa (2-11) next Monday at 6:30 p.m.

Editorial: How the 6A split saved 6A football

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

Oklahoma high school football experienced a dramatic and controversial change in the fall of 2013 when the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association (OSSAA) announced a split in Class 6A. The 16 highest-enrollment schools would be separated from the lower 16 and each division would play for their own State Title.

The reason for the decision was simple. Population. The current enrollment of Broken Arrow High School is 4,872. The enrollment of Booker T Washington? 1,317. The difference between the top of 6A and the bottom of 6A is greater than the top of 5A and the smallest schools in the State. Schools like BA, Union, Jenks, and Owasso have four times the talent pool to draw from. While the majority of the Hornet starters play both sides of the ball and never get a break, the Redskins have a roster larger than some colleges and have backups for their backups.

Class 6A was created in 1992 and the inaugural Championship was won by Norman. Jenks won it in ’93, Midwest City went back-to-back from ’94-95, and nobody but Jenks or Union has won it since. More often than not, the State Championship game has simply been a rematch between the Backyard Bowl rivals. Since the inception of 6A, Jenks leads the series with 14 titles to Union’s 7, and only 2 other teams have ever won.

Clearly population isn’t the only deciding factor, otherwise Broken Arrow would have won it every year. But there’s no denying the significance it plays. 6A teams were judged by their ability to turn a winning record, not by their ability to win State Titles. That was irrelevant. Nobody won State Titles but Jenks and Union.

In the 22 seasons that Sand Springs played the 6A division, they earned a total record of 98-131 and only managed 7 winning seasons with 7 playoff appearances. In five of those years they were eliminated by top-four-enrollment schools. The other years it was by top-ten schools. Since the 6A split, the Sandites have gone 15-11, made the playoffs both years, and actually won playoff games for the first time since 1997. In 2015, the Sandites made their first State Final appearance since 1966.

While the problems with the 6A split were clear—increased travel, “easier” brackets—the solution has proved to be a game-changer for the 16 schools who now feel like they actually have a legitimate chance. The culture around Sand Springs football has changed, and it’s not an isolated event.

The Class 6A-II conversation begins with two-time reigning State Champions, the Bixby Spartans. Bixby was an annual contender in Class 5A without fail. They weren’t part of the inaugural class of 6A. They didn’t move over until 2010. Prior to that, they had six-straight winning seasons with ten-straight playoff appearances. In their first year of 6A they finished the regular season 5-5, their worst record since 2003, and were eliminated in round one by Jenks. For the next two years they posted losing records and didn’t make the playoffs again till the 6A split. In a single year, the 6A powerhouses had killed the football culture at Bixby. They were lucky that they only had to live through it for four years before the split. In 2014, the Spartans were once again playing teams at their size, and they went 12-1 for their first ever State Title. Their only loss? A season-opening non-conference game against Jenks. Jenks won that one 66-20. The Spartans defended their title in 2015 and are currently ranked number one in 2016. After two straight winning seasons and State Titles, the Spartans challenged Jenks in their season opener and nearly won it, 38-34.

Booker T Washington has always had a culture of winning, with eight State Championships including two recently in 2008 and 2010 at the 5A level. The Hornets only had to play two seasons of 6A football, both ending in first round devastating playoff defeats at the hands of the Big Four. As soon as 6A split, they were back in it with a 7-game winning streak and a 10-2 season in 2014. Last year they went undefeated in the regular season and earned the number one rank before Sand Springs defeated them in the semi-finals. This year the Hornets are laying the foundation to take their program to the next level with College Hall of Fame member Brad Calip taking over as Head Coach and former University of Tulsa Head Coach Bill Blankenship volunteering with the quarterbacks and offensive coaching. The Hornets have stepped up their pre-conference scheduling with 6A No. 5 Edmond Santa Fe and Florida-based private school IMG Academy which is currently ranked No. 2 in the nation with an entire roster of division-I commits.

Bartlesville was part of the first class of 6A, and went 0-10 in the first two years. They didn’t post a winning record till 2002, when they were doubled down on by Union 54-27 in the first round of the playoffs. Their next winning record wouldn’t come till 2008, and that was only due to a forfeiture by Jenks due to OSSAA sanctions. In 2009 they gave it a real run and even defeated Owasso, but still couldn’t fend off Jenks, BA, and Southmoore. In 2010 they had another winning record at 7-4. Their losses were to the Big Four. Since the 6A split they’ve made the playoffs both years and finished last season with only two losses. They held the No. 1 rank briefly after defeating Bixby, before falling to BTW two weeks later.

The success stories continue from there. The evidence is undeniable, the 6A split has saved 6A football. While critics of the sixteen-team bracket call it a JV division, the reality is that the top teams in 6A-II never could compete with the Big Four when they were in 6A, but now they could. Bixby nearly defeated 6A No. 1 Jenks in a pre-conference battle. BTW almost defeated 6A No. 5 Edmond Santa Fe. Sand Springs has begun scheduling real opponents like Arkansas State Champion Pulaski Academy, instead of their past habit of lighting up Nathan Hale, who has lost 37-straight games. Muskogee has brought in 5A State Championship coach Rafe Watkins from Guthrie and is now a real contender for the first time in years. Putnam City West is confidently rebuilding their program after a decade of losing seasons. Sapulpa brought on former Sand Springs Defensive Coordinator Robert Borgstadt as head coach to rebuild their ailing program.

Success breeds success. Is the 16-team bracket the best way to go? Who knows? Maybe one day there will be a full 32 schools the size of BA and we can re-institute the 32-team standard. Maybe we should split all the other classes into 16-team divisions as well. Or maybe we should call Bixby and Jenks Division Champions instead of State Champions and have them play each other for the true 6A State Championship. There’s many things we could try; some could work, and some won’t. But the fact is, 6A football is more competitive than it has ever been, and almost every school in the Class is now vying to be the next big deal. The Big Four monopoly hasn’t been broken, but at least 16 teams now feel like they have a real shot.

Lady Sandite Volleyball knocks off No. 10 Union in beautiful upset

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The No. 10 ranked Union Redskins (5-5) probably expected little competition from the No. 17 Sand Springs Lady Sandites (13-9). Union’s only losses before their journey to Sand Springs were to top-ten teams. Unfortunately for them, the Sandites’ ranking is misleading.

The Charles Page High School varsity volleyball team had recently gone 2-4 at the Broken Arrow Invitational, but that record doesn’t show that they were one of only two teams there to win even a single set against No. 2 Norman North (12-2). It also doesn’t show that six of the ten games they lost were by five points or less.   

The Redskins got off to a fast start on the Sandites in the first set before giving up three points on errors. Madison Burris and Gloria Mutiri combined on a block to tie things up at 4-4 and Mutiri scored a kill for the lead.

Union went on a five-point run from there, but the Sandites won eight-straight rallies to reclaim the advantage. Mutiri and Holly Kersgieter each scored several kills off Burris and Lee Leslie, and Madison Ward scored the first ace of the game.

The Sandites were up 16-11 when Union went on another streak. Kendall Cotter scored a pair of aces, Gabbie Inman and Paris Hornor both registered kills, and the Redskins took the 19-16 lead before freshman Devree Youngblood broke the streak with a spike off Burris. Union continued to outscore Sand Springs till a 24-19 score looked like they had it all wrapped up.

The Sandites had other plans.

Mutiri scored off Kenzie Bradshaw, Kylie Taylor served an ace, Ashley Barrows gave up a point on an error, and MaKenzie Ward set up Mutiri to narrow the score to 24-23. Barrows scored a kill to win the set for Union, but the Sandites had shown they were here to play.

The second set was far closer and neither team allowed the other to go on a run this time. The longest scoring-streak either team managed was four rallies. The game was tied up six different times, but the Sandites led six different times and only allowed the Redskins to lead once.

Union tied things up at 15-15 with a kill from Chloe Click, then took the lead on a pair of errors. They held the advantage for only five rallies before giving it up on an error at 18-18 and never recovered. Mutiri took the lead at 20-19 off a set from MaKenzie Ward, Kersgieter served an ace, then scored again after a Union time out. The final minutes were back-and-forth on scoring, but Sand Springs never relinquished the lead and ultimately won 25-23 on a kill from Mutiri.

The third game belonged explosively to the Sandites. After giving up the first three rallies to Union on errors, the Sandites tied things up at 4-4 and took the lead with back-to-back aces from Burris. Union never tied it and never even got close to leading again.

The Sandites scored seven aces in the third game: two from Burris, two from Kersgieter, two from Kendall Wise, and one from Mutiri. The host team had doubled down on their visitors 22-10 midway through the game. The Redskins tried to rally, but they were too far in the deficit and Sand Springs won 25-17.

The visitors found their feet in the fourth game and led for most of it. Sand Springs battled heavy in the last minutes and got within a few points, but Union prevailed 25-22 to force a fifth set.

The final game started off a tad rocky for the Sandites with some communication errors and campfires, but after tying it up at 5-5 with a kill from Mutiri, the Sandites took the lead and never looked back. Kersgieter scored the go-ahead point, Mutiri and Leslie combined on a block, Hornor committed an error, Mutiri added another kill, and Mutiri and Leslie combined on yet another block for the 10-5 lead.

The next five points were decided by errors and the Redskins closed the gap to 12-9 with a tipped ball from Inman. Kersgieter almost saved a shanked dig that went OB, but the ball caught the antenna for the point. Morgan Livingston hit an ace, and the Redskins threatened at 12-11.

Union got into the net on the next rally and Wise served an ace to make it 14-11. A four-touch call gave Union a point, but MaKenzie Ward set up Youngblood for the game-winner.

Mutiri led the Sandites in scoring with twenty-nine kills, five blocks, and two aces, followed by Kersgieter with a season-best fourteen kills, two assists, and four aces. Youngblood was next in on the action with a season-best ten kills, and Wise also scored a season-best with five kills and four aces. Burris had her best night of the season with nineteen assists, followed by MaKenzie Ward with eighteen.

The Lady Sandites will get a full week off after playing twenty matches in twenty-one days. They’ll return to action next Tuesday in an away match at Owasso. Owasso is ranked fifth in 6A with a 4-0 record. Freshmen begin play at 4:00 p.m., Junior Varsity is at 5:00 p.m. and Varsity is at 6:00 p.m.

Lady Sandites drop straight sets to Bartlesville at BA Tournament

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The No. 18 ranked Charles Page High School varsity volleyball team (11-8) is 1-3 at the Broken Arrow Tournament after dropping their first match of the silver bracket Saturday morning. 

The Lady Sandites got off to a great start in the first set against the No. 20 Bartlesville Bruins (3-7) with a 7-0 lead. MaKenzie Ward set up Devree Youngblood for the opening kill and Holly Kersgieter scored an ace on the side out. Lee Leslie scored a pair of kills and Gloria Mutiri added one as well.

The Sandites gave up a pair of points on errors, but Madison Burris and Mutiri scored on a pair of blocks to make it 10-2. Mutiri followed up with a pair of solo blocks soon after, but the Bruins finally started to compete. 

Sand Springs gave up a point on an illegal block and the Bruins capitalized with an ace. That gave them the momentum they needed to surge towards a 25-19 finish. 

The second set was competitive from the get-go, though the Sandites did lead for much of it. The Bruins took the lead at 10-9, but Mutiri and Leslie combined for a block to tie it up. Bartlesville regained the lead right after on a consecutive touch call and never relinquished it from then-on. They won that set 25-21. 

The third set was marred by communication errors, but the Sandites still managed to hang tight. Bartlesville won that one 25-20 to sweep the match. 

Mutiri led in scoring with eleven kills and give blocks, followed by Kersgieter with six kills and two aces. Ward registered eight assists and Burris had seven. 

The Sandites will return to action at noon against the winner of Moore (1-11) vs No. 15 Southmoore (3-4). 

Mutiri and Leatherland both score 31 in shootout at BA Tournament

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The No. 18 ranked Charles Page High School varsity volleyball team (10-7) dropped their opening match at the Broken Arrow Tournament Friday morning to the Northeast Oklahoma Association of Homeschools (3-2).

The Lady Sandites dominated the first game 25-16. The Jaguars took an early 8-5 lead, but four straight aces from junior Gloria Mutiri put the Sandites up 10-8. Marysia Erb broke up the streak and Hannah Williams served an ace to tie it up 10-10.

The Sandites won the next five rallies with three errors, a kill from Holly Kersgieter, and an ace from Mackenzie Ward. Malia Leatherland got in a kill, but Kendall Wise scored back-to-back aces to push the lead to 19-12. Ward set up kills for Lee Leslie, Mutiri, and Kersgieter and the Sandites surged to a 25-16 finish.

The second set featured far fewer Jaguar errors and far more kills from Leatherland. The heavy-hitting senior daughter of Coach Mike Leatherland was all over the place throughout the set.

Mutiri was an ever-present threat, scoring the first three kills of the game for the Sandites and joining with Ward for a block. Leatherland scored on a tipped ball and followed it up with an ace. A series of Sandite errors and another kill from Leatherland gave NOAH the 10-7 advantage before they gave it up with six errors of their own and Devree Youngblood and Madison Burris joined for a block to make it 13-11.

NOAH pulled briefly ahead before a Mutiri ace tied it at 16-16, but the Jags tried to run away with it and pushed their lead to 22-17 before the Sandites found their feet and tied it up at 23-23 with a pair of blocks from Mutiri and Burris, and Mutiri and Leslie.

The game tied at 24-24 after a kill from Leatherland, Kersgieter tipped a kill for the lead, but Leatherland tied it right back up at 25-25. Both teams exchanged errors and NOAH took the lead on a blocked tip from Mutiri. The Sandites got the side out on a service error and Burris set up Kersgieter for the 28-27 kill. A Jaguar fault sealed the victory at 29-27 and the match was solidly in the hands of Sand Springs 2-0.

The third set was a mess of errors and NOAH took a 4-1 lead before either team scored a single kill. Makenna Cypert scored the opening kill for the Sandites, Leatherland retaliated, and Mutiri spiked in another to make it 5-3. The teams exchanged service errors, Mutiri and Leslie combined on a block, and Youngblood scored a kill to make it 8-6. A kill from Kersgieter followed by three-straight Jaguar errors gave the Sandites the lead at 11-10. Leatherland scored back-to-back kills, then Mutiri did the same.

The back-and-forth affair continued all the way into extra points where the game tied for the final time at 27-27 on a block from Mutiri. Leatherland and Erb both scored kills for the 29-27 victory.

In game four the Jags took the lead early on with back-to-back kills from Leatherland. Sand Springs pulled close at 7-5 with a kill from Mutiri, but Leatherland scored a kill followed by four-straight aces. The lead was comfortably NOAH’s till Mutiri scored three-straight to close it to 19-16. Mutiri scored off a Ward setup and a pair of errors put the Sandites within a point, 20-19. They would only win one rally from there and NOAH prevailed 25-20 to tie the match.

NOAH pulled a quick 4-1 lead in the final set and didn’t give up the lead till 13-13. Leslie scored an ace, but Leatherland scored two. Ward served one of her own and Mutiri followed with a block, but the girls still trailed 11-8. They got within a point on a kill from Leslie to make it 12-11, then scored a block from Burris and Mutiri to tie it up. Leatherland scored a kill from there, then put up an impressive block on one of Mutiri’s infamous spikes for the 15-13 win.

Mutiri and Leatherland tied in scoring with 31 kills each. Mutiri scored seven blocks to Leatherland’s four, but Leatherland scored seven aces to Mutiri’s five. Kersgieter added another twelve kills and Leslie scored seven. Ward led in assists with twenty-four and Burris added another twelve.

Gloria Mutiri scores 22 kills in 3-2 loss to Victory Christian

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The Charles Page High School varsity volleyball team (10-5) gave the 4A No. 4 Victory Christian Conquerors (9-3) a run for their money Thursday night at Victory. The Conquerors likely thought the match would be a breeze after winning the first set 25-14, but Sand Springs surged to victory in the next two games.

The Lady Sandites managed a mere six kills in the first game. Gloria Mutiri got the girls on the board with an assist from MaKenzie Ward, but Victory held the lead at 3-1. Senior Lee Leslie picked up a point on a solo block, but Senior Andrea Redmond responded with a tipped ball for the kill. Mutiri scored one of her signature spikes, but Redmond got in another tipped ball and the Conquerors gained a point from a Mutiri error for the 8-3 advantage. 

The Lady Sandites briefly closed the gap to 16-13 thanks to a pair of Victory errors and a kill from Mutiri off MaKenzie Ward, but the Conquerors surged ahead with four straight rally wins and an ace from Redmond. Mutiri added one more kill before Victory won the next five rallies to end things 25-14.

In the second game the Conquerors started 2-0 once again with an error from Leslie and a blocked shot by Redmond, but the Sandites battled neck-and-neck and tied things up at 3-3 with a block from Makenna Cypert, and 4-4 as Mutiri blocked a spike from Redmond. Redmond committed an error to give the Sandites the lead and Cypert added an ace to push it to 6-4. 

Sand Springs held the lead for seventeen-straight rallies before committing three straight faults to tie it at 13-13. Redmond scored a pair of kills to make it 16-14, but another Cypert ace gave Sand Springs the upper hand at 18-17. The game tied twice more at 23-23 and 24-24 before Lee Leslie got the go-ahead kill and Mutiri added a block for the 26-24 win. 

In game three the two teams exchanged errors till Mutiri scored the first kill for the Sandites to make it 3-2. The teams traded the lead three more times before Victory finally started to build ground on the Sandites and push the advantage to 17-12. A timeout for the Sandites made for a scoring catalyst and the girls won four straight rallies to force the Conquerors to use a timeout of their own. 

Freshman Devree Youngblood scored a pair of back-to-back kills and Mutiri tied things up at 22-22. A consecutive touching call gave Sand Springs the lead, Madison Ward served up an ace, and Holly Kersgieter scored the winning kill off an assist from Madison Burris. The Sandites led the match 2-1.

The fourth game was decidedly Victory's from the get-go. Youngblood scored an early kill to make it 1-1, but Victory won the next eight straight rallies. Mutiri and Redmond exchanged kills, but Redmond managed to block a pair of Mutiri's spikes and the Conquerors furthered their lead to 14-3. 

Mutiri picked up a solo block and the Sandites added another point on a waffle. Kersgieter added a block and MaKenzie Ward scored an ace, then Mutiri tipped a kill into a campfire. Ultimately the early errors were insurmountable and the Sandites lost the set 25-13.

It came down to the final set. Sand Springs scored first on an error, but gave the point right back and allowed an ace. Redmond added three more kills for an 8-5 advantage, but Sand Springs won three straight rallies with kills from Kersgieter and Youngblood to tie it up. 

Victory used a timeout to break up the Sandite momentum and the girls were unable to score again for the duration, save for a service error by the Conquerors. Victory narrowly grabbed the 15-9 win for the match.

Mutiri led her team in scoring by a landslide with 22 kills, including five blocks. MaKenzie Ward registered fifteen assists as well as two aces. Redmond led the scoring for both teams with 23 total kills including three blocks and an ace. 

The Lady Sandites will return to action Friday morning at 10:30 a.m. in round one of the Broken Arrow Tournament against Tulsa NOAH Home School. Immediately after that match they will play No. 3 Norman North (7-2) and at 3:00 p.m. they will take on Moore (1-8). 

Sandites place fifth in Broken Arrow Tournament, Pennington homers in 3-1 win over BA

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The Charles Page High School varsity softball team (5-3) let their bats fly against Broken Arrow Saturday evening at the Arrowhead Softball Complex. Felicity Horn, Sydney Pennington, and Jacie Taber all hit doubles and Pennington added a home run in a 3-1 victory over the tournament's host team. 

After going 3-2 in pool play, the Lady Sandites found themselves competing against the Lady Tigers for fifth place in the sixteen-team tournament. The Sandites defeated Choctaw, Putnam City North, and Edmond North, but lost to Owasso and Durant. Owasso won the tournament.

Sophomore Jacie Taber (2-1) got the win on the mound, giving up six hits against one strikeout. 

Horn, a freshman, got on base in the first plate appearance of the game with a line drive double into left field, and advanced to third on a single from Pennington, but both were left stranded.

The Lady Tigers stranded one in both the first and second innings and threatened heavily in the bottom of the third. Mary Collins and McKenzie Carney singled and Aleigha Brown reached on an error to load the bases with one out. The Sandites pulled out of the tight spot, however, as Pennington caught a fly ball in foul territory and Kimi Presnell scooped up a groundball from Abby Parks to put the runner out at first.

Pennington got the Sandites on the board in the top of the fourth with a lead-off homer, her first of the season. In the top of the sixth, Sabrina Usher reached on a fielder's choice and scored on a double from Taber. Pennington doubled in the seventh to score Jessica Collins. Mary Collins put Broken Arrow on the board with a lead-off home run in the bottom of the seventh, but the next three batters flied out and Sand Springs secured the win.

The Lady Sandites will return to action Tuesday at home with a double-header against Norman beginning at 5:00 p.m. The Highway 97 Rivalry match-up will be a double-header Thursday at home, also at 5:00 p.m.

Fantastic performance from Rutledge not enough to hold off Bartlesville upset

By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief

The Bartlesville Bruins (5-17) dropped losses to Bixby and Broken Arrow on day one of the Sand Springs/Broken Arrow Wooden Bat Tournament, but pulled out a surprising come-from-behind upset over their hosts in Sand Springs.

The Sandites (19-6) claimed a two-run lead twice in the affair, and twice gave up four-run innings to their challenger. Rhett Rutledge (1-1) got his first loss on the mound this season, giving up four hits, four runs, and four walks, but struck out four and none of the runs were earned. Joey Montgomery (1-2) got the start on the mound and pitched into the fourth inning before being relieved with the game tied 2-2. Trevor Doyle got the win for Bartlesville, who went through four pitchers in the affair.

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Montgomery struck out one and pitched a no-hitter in the first and the Sandites took the lead as Rutledge tripled and scored on a balk. Montgomery only gave up one hit in the second and two in the third, but neither scored. Again, it was Rutledge with a run in the bottom in the third, singling and being brought in on a Tyler McCallie walk on loaded bases. 

In the top of the fourth, Bartlesville took their first lead as Zac Boyes and Tate Holman were each hit by pitch. Pierson Lavery sacrificed to bring in Boyes and Holman scored on a single by Derek Hill to tie it up. Montgomery walked one more and Rutledge took over on the mound. Garrett Meidl singled to score Hill and Zach Snow for the 4-2 advantage.

Bartlesville pitched their first no-hitter in the bottom of the fourth and continued to get on base in the top of the fifth with two walks and a single, but failed to score. University of Oklahoma-commit Jake Terry singled, stole second and third, then scored on an error to make it 4-3.

Rutledge had a great inning pitching in the sixth, striking out three and only giving up a single, and the Sandites capitalized on it, reclaiming their lead 6-3. Rutledge doubled to score Ty Fain and Josh Taber, then scored on a passed ball. 

The Bruins won it in the top of the seventh, however, as AJ Archambo walked and Boyes reached first on catcher's interference. Rutledge put out courtesy runner Lukas Rietfors at second on a fielder's choice that allowed Tate Holman to reach first. Doyle reached on a error at short stop to score Archambo. Lavery struck out, but Hill was intentionally walked to load the bases, then Snow walked to score Tate. Meidl singled to score Doyle and Hill advanced to home on a throw before the Sandites finally came in to bat.

Treyce Tolbert and McCallie were both put out, but Trevor Tolbert doubled, advanced to third on a passed ball, and scored on an error to make it 8-7. Ty Fain advanced as far as third and it looked like the Sandites would tie it, but Doyle struck out Taber to fend off the rally.