January has been a fun month for the Christian Heritage boys.
With 10 wins and two tournament championships in 19 days prior to Tuesday night, the Crusaders have been flying high, and that emotion seemed to carry over.
In a rivalry game with a packed gym and both teams coming off championships last Saturday, striking quick was crucial. CHA closed the first quarter with a 10-1 run and kept pulling away for a 60-45 win over visiting Oklahoma Christian.
“We had a couple slip-ups early in the season,” said senior Colton Lindsey, who scored 16 of his game-high 20 points in the second half. “But we're starting to get our groove, come together as a team, and we're playing a lot better.”
The Crusaders (14-2) are ranked No. 18 in Class 2A, despite their last loss coming Dec. 20.
With a good combination of size and athletic ability, CHA has the potential to be a scary team down the stretch.
CHA's Gabe LittleJim had 11 points Tuesday, while Caleb LittleJim and Spencer Lindsey had nine each. Last Saturday, Caleb LittleJim scored 13 points in the last two minutes as CHA rallied from 10 points down to win the Little Axe Tournament.
SHAWNEE UPSETS CARL ALBERT
Riding a huge wave of confidence, Shawnee put together its third straight win over a ranked opponent, this time coming in the form of a 54-45 upset of No. 3 Carl Albert.
“The guys are feeling really good about themselves right now,” Shawnee coach Ron Arthur said. “We thought coming over here we had a fighting chance because our guys look up to Carl Albert, they want to play their very best against them and we were fortunate enough to get some bounces tonight.”
The Wolves led just 23-22 at halftime before going on a 15-5 run in the third quarter. During that span, Shawnee turned to a swarming defense that has been effective during the recent stretch of wins against Coweta and Southeast.
“We talked about at halftime going back to the things that we were doing early in the game: being patient on offense, valuing the possession and playing swarming defense,” Arthur said. “We showed a lot of weaknesses there in the first half. In the second half, we fixed a lot of those weaknesses.”
Don Murphy led the Wolves with 12 points, while Cameron Warren scored 21 for Carl Albert.
STILLWATER KNOCKS OFF SANTA FE
Carson Teel scored 20 points to lead No. 15 Stillwater to an 81-65 upset of sixth-ranked Edmond Santa Fe.
Brandon Prather added 19 points as the Pioneers improved to 12-6 on the season.
DEL CITY WINS IN OT
Xavier Hunter's 25 points led Del City to a 70-65 win over Norman in overtime. Brett Cannon added 23 for the Eagles in the victory.
John Michael Bernadello led Norman with a game-high 27 points.
Bethel's Clint Simmons scored 41 points in a 71-59 win over Konawa. ... Taylor Hicks had 18 points, and Kristian Doolittle had 17 as Edmond Memorial notched an Edlam win, 73-43 over Edmond North. ... Four Douglass players scored at least nine points in a 69-63 win over Southeast. ... Ashford Golden's 22 points led Millwood to a 64-61 win over Northwest Classen. ... Tuttle's Tyler Lester scored 21 points as the Tigers won their eighth straight game, 57-46 over Lindsay.