Class A boys basketball: Branson Daugherty leads Merritt over Velma-Alma

Daugherty scored 15 of his 29 points in the fourth quarter as the Oilers ruined Velma-Alma's perfect season
by Scott Wright Published: March 1, 2012
Velma-Alma's Corbin Byford was the star, but Merritt played the role of spoiler perfectly.

Byford, a 6-foot-7 senior who has signed with Oral Roberts, had 28 points, 10 rebounds and nine blocked shots, but a late 3-pointer by Merritt's Branson Daugherty — his seventh of the day — put the Oilers on top en route to a 52-50 victory in the first round of the Class A boys state basketball tournament at State Fair Arena.

Midway through the third quarter, Byford still had more points than Merritt's whole team, but the Oilers were able to better execute the game plan for slowing down the versatile Byford.

With his ability to play strong inside and handle the ball on the perimeter, Byford presented a difficult matchup for Merritt, without a player taller than 6-foot-3.

“In the first half, we let Byford have the ball too much,” Daugherty said. “We needed to get the ball out of his hands, and in the second half, we did a much better job.”

Merritt rallied from 12 points down, thanks to Daugherty scoring 15 of his game-high 29 points in the fourth quarter as the Oilers ruined Velma-Alma's perfect season.

by Scott Wright
A lifelong resident of the Oklahoma City metro area, Scott Wright has been on The Oklahoman staff since 2005, covering a little bit of everything on the state's sports scene. He has been a beat writer for football and basketball at Oklahoma and...
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