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Girls basketball roundup: Piedmont turns up defensive intensity to sack Carl Albert

The shots were not falling Friday night for the Wildcats, so they made adjustments at halftime and surprised the No. 3-ranked Titans.
by Scott Wright and Jacob Unruh Published: February 21, 2014
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Piedmont has been shooting nearly lights out for the past few weeks.

So when the shots weren't falling Friday against No. 3-ranked Carl Albert, the Wildcats were forced to focus on other areas.

Turns out, they can play defense, too.

The seventh-ranked Wildcats used a 1-3-1 zone in the second half to near perfection to rally from an eight-point deficit and pull off a 46-43 upset for their ninth straight victory.

It's that kind of play Piedmont first-year girls basketball coach Jamie Hill hoped to see from her team in the final tuneup before next week's playoffs.

“Shots aren't going to fall every night of the week,” she said. “If they did, Duke would have beaten North Carolina last night. If you rely on your shooting too much, that can put you in danger.

“What the girls proved tonight is even when we're down, we're still going to play with some intensity and we're still going to turn up that defense and get some offense out of that.”

Carl Albert was dominant in the first half, jumping to a 14-6 lead early and leading 25-19 at the break.

Piedmont was just 5 of 21 shooting in the first half, but that didn't upset Hill. Instead, she remained positive at halftime and made the defensive adjustment.

“We're a pretty fast team, and defense is something we really rely on,” said Piedmont junior Hayden Priddy, who finished with 11 points. “Whether your offense is working or not, defense is always going to be there. That's something we really focused on tonight.”

The Wildcats then went on a 14-3 run to open the third quarter. Priddy later hit the go-ahead layup with 1:50 remaining and delivered a nice, but risky, bounce pass to Mina Iyaye for an easy basket for a 44-41 lead with 1:05 remaining.

Two free throws from junior Bre Reid with 16 seconds remaining sealed the victory.

Carl Albert senior Jordan Gilbert, who finished with 10 points, missed the tying 3-pointer as time expired.

 

BETHANY PULLS OUT DISTRICT WIN AT TUTTLE

Playing in honor of a teacher who lost her husband this week, Bethany pulled out a 45-42 district playoff victory at Tuttle with a few clutch plays in the final minute.

Trailing 42-40, Bethany took the lead with a 3-pointer by Lexi Smith, and got a defensive stop when Riley Brown blocked a Tuttle shot. After a pair of free throws by Bethany's Brooklyn Judkins, Brown came up with another blocked shot on Tuttle's potential game-tying 3-pointer as the final seconds ticked off the clock.

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by Scott Wright
Reporter
A lifelong resident of the Oklahoma City metro area, Scott Wright has been on The Oklahoman staff since 2005, covering a little bit of everything on the state's sports scene. He has been a beat writer for football and basketball at Oklahoma and...
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by Jacob Unruh
Reporter
Jacob Unruh is a graduate of Northeastern State University. He was born in Cherokee and raised near Vera where he attended Caney Valley High School.During his tenure at NSU, Unruh wrote for The Northeastern (NSU's student newspaper), the...
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