BLANCHARD — Trailing Tecumseh by 18 points in the middle of the third quarter of a Class 4A district playoff game Friday night, Blanchard coach William Kralik called a timeout to talk to his team.
But it was junior point guard Quade Nelson who did most of the talking in the huddle.
“I didn't have to say much,” Kralik recalled. “Quade sort of took over, and told the guys, ‘Hey, we're better than this.'”
Nelson spoke even louder with his play over the final 12 minutes of the game, leading comeback for a 57-55 victory and earning him The Oklahoman's Boys Basketball Player of the Week honor.
“The first possession out of that timeout, he got a steal, made a layup, got fouled and made the free throw,” Kralik said. “He just took over the game. He got to the free throw line, hit some big shots, came up with a couple steals.”
Nelson was 17 of 22 at the free throw line as part of a 28-point effort to advance the Lions to the regional round, where they will face sixth-ranked John Marshall at 8 p.m. Thursday at Bethel.
Nelson has been a do-it-all point guard for the Lions (16-8), who have had a good season, despite flying under the radar in some respects.