YUKON —With the help of a raucous student section and key plays from a senior late in the fourth quarter, Elk city stunned top-ranked Victory Christian on Thursday, 41-35.
Elk City forward Luke Lewallen, who finished tied for a team-high 12 points, hit a 3-pointer with less than three minutes left to tie the game at 35.
“It was a set play,” Lewallen said. “In the timeout coach said, ‘Luke, you’re going to hit this one for us and tie up the game.’ And I just did what he said.”
Two possessions later, Lewallen gave Elk City the lead after hitting one-of-two free throws. Victory Christian (23-4), led by junior guard Chris Crawford’s 18 points, turned the ball over on its next possession when Lewallen stole a pass for a fastbreak layup — the game-sealing basket. Elk City held Victory Christian to just two points in the fourth.
In Elk City’s first postseason appearance since 2007, when former OU standout Cade Davis led the Elks, Lewallen provided the late-game leadership that led to the upset.
“It was just such a great win coming out here with everyone doubting us,” Lewallen said. “We just proved them wrong.”
Elk City coach Lucian Bliss said his team is peaking at just the right time.
“It means a lot, but these kids have been playing hard and the right way all year long,” Bliss said. “I know we have six losses, but we lost to six really good teams. We’ve played really tough competition all year long. We’ve just started to put it together right here late doing all the little things right.”
Elk City (20-6) will face Douglass (20-4) in the second round of the 4A boys basketball playoffs at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Yukon High School.