Thunder: Halfcourt shot ignites celebration
Roman Owen played four years of basketball at Okarche, one of the most tradition-rich high schools for hoops in Oklahoma. He never made it to the Big House, State Fair Arena.
Owen wasn’t on the varsity as a freshman. When Owen was a sophomore, Okarche lost a first-round game in the state tournament at Moore High School. When Owen was a junior, Okarche reached the state semifinals, but its two state tournament games were played at Norman High and Oklahoma City University. When Owen was a senior, Okarche was eliminated before the state tournament.
Owen then played four years of basketball at Southwestern Christian University and now is the women’s coach at Mid-American Christian University in southwest OKC.
But Tuesday night, Owen finally made a big house. A house bigger than State Fair Arena.
In the Thunder-Memphis game at Oklahoma City Arena, Owen sank a halfcourt shot between the third and fourth quarters and won $20,000 from MidFirst Bank.
And seemed to ignite the crowd. The Thunder had been playing well, leading the Grizzlies 76-68, but at the start of the fourth quarter, the Thunder reserves (with Serge Ibaka in place of Nazr Mohammed) spurted to a blowout. Took a 21-point lead, and the Thunder coasted the rest of the way.
No one is saying Roman Owen made the same contribution as Eric Maynor and James Harden. But no doubt that halfcourt shot brought some new juice to the atmosphere.
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