CHOCTAW — Douglass point guard Stephen Clark shuffled out of Choctaw High School on crutches with his right ankle tightly wrapped Thursday evening.
Now the Trojans have to hope their chances at a fourth consecutive state championship aren’t hobbled, too.
Clark, who has signed with Oklahoma State, injured his right ankle late in the first half of Douglass’ 79-56 win over Muldrow in the first round of the Class 4A boys state tournament with Clark’s teammates carrying the load.
DeAngelo Smith had 24 points, and Deondre Clark had 21 for Douglass. Stephen Clark finished with 16, just four of which came after the injury as he spent much of the second half on the bench.
“We had to step up,” Smith said. “I knew I had to do what I could do to help my team win. I felt like I could do anything to help us accomplish this win.
“We can play better, but we’re gonna get there, we’re gonna get that ‘W’ at the State Fair on Saturday.”
Smith exploded out of the gate, scoring 10 in the first quarter. If Stephen Clark can’t play Friday, he’ll become the focal point of the Trojans’ perimeter offense.
“It feels good to know we have other players that can take over,” said Stephen Clark, who has played with a nagging wrist injury since early January. “If I’m not able to come back, we’ll be fine. We’ll do all the necessary stuff and hopefully I’ll be able to come back (Friday).”
The Trojans (25-3), looking for their fourth straight gold ball in Class 4A, advanced to the semifinals, where they’ll face the Victory Christian-Harrah winner at 4:30 p.m. Friday at State Fair Arena.
Muldrow was led by Dominic Blue with 18 points and Nate Hamilton with 15, concluding its year at 20-9.
Stephen Clark’s 16 points upped his career total to 3,236 points, now in seventh place all-time.
The current all-time scoring leaders in state history are: Rotnei Clark, Verdigris, 3,758; Keiton Page, Pawnee, 3,709; Ty Harman, Maud, 3,639; Kelenna Azubuike, Victory Christian, 3,530; Dalen Qualls, Stratford, 3,290; Lane Adams, Red Oak, 3,251; Stephen Clark, Douglass, 3,236; Kenneth Johnson, Grandfield, 3,191.