MOORE — If McGuinness’ Ryan Randolph was still feeling the effects of an infection that left his energy sapped and his status doubtful for the Class 4A state tournament, he didn’t show any in Friday’s semifinals against Fort Gibson.
Randolph had 29 points — 20 in the second half — as the Irish turned what was a close game at halftime into a blowout, beating Fort Gibson 69-56 at Moore High Arena.
“I’m feeling a lot better,” Randolph said. “I’ve been to about five different doctors to try to figure out what’s wrong but I was better today — we were all better.”
The win keeps McGuinness’ hopes of a fourth consecutive title alive.
The Irish (21-8) play Star Spencer at noon Saturday at Lloyd Noble Center in the Class 4A championship game.
Fort Gibson led 26-25 at halftime before McGuinness blew things open in the second half by outscoring the Tigers 25-4 in the third quarter.
“We didn’t want that one to be our last game,” Randolph said. “We just came out with a sense of urgency in the second half.”
And did they ever.
The Irish turned up the pressure defensively and at one point ripped off 20 consecutive points in a span that lasted more than eight minutes.
Thomas Love added 17 for the Irish. Daniel Orton, playing in just his second game of the season, had 10 rebounds and three blocks.
Courtney Gaston led Fort Gibson with 14 points and 11 rebounds.