SHAWNEE — It's safe to say family is the most important thing in Taylor Cooper's life.
The senior forward and Oklahoman Super 5 team member won her second straight state championship this season with a second team. Last year as a junior, Cooper helped lead Bethel to the Class 3A title.
Cooper averaged 13.2 points and 6.1 rebounds during her senior season and, like last year, one of her key teammates was her sister, McKenzie, who is two years younger than Taylor.
“My family is my main support system throughout all of this,” Taylor Cooper said. “They've helped me become the person and athlete I am. I don't know what I'd do without them.”
Cooper chose to play college basketball at Oral Roberts largely, she said, because of the coaches.
“They reminded me of my parents,” she said of Jeff and Leslie Cooper.
Taylor Cooper picked Oral Roberts over offers from Texas Tech, Kansas State and Missouri-Kansas City.
“It came down to Texas Tech and ORU, and I just liked what ORU had to offer for me as a person, spiritually,” Cooper said.
The closeness to home and her family didn't hurt, though. She'll try to make it to Shawnee games next season as often as she can as McKenzie Cooper and the Wolves try to repeat.
Taylor Cooper said she expects to see some playing time next season at Oral Roberts.
“I think I'll get to play, but I'll have to get in there and work for it and earn it,” she said.