ENID — The Class A and B state basketball tournaments are still going to start Thursday at State Fair Arena — weather-permitting.
It's nothing new to have the baseball or softball state playoff schedules shaken up by weather. In fact, it's practically expected.
But a late February/early March snowstorm big enough to derail basketball games is pretty rare around here.
Even rarer is what happened Sunday afternoon: basketball games were played.
In fact, four state tournament berths were granted, including those for the Laverne boys and Okarche girls at the Chisholm Trail Expo Center in Enid.
Fearing more snow on Monday, the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association allowed Class A and B area tournaments to be moved up a day to make sure they were completed.
Laverne boys basketball coach Drew Miller can't recall ever being a part of a Sunday high school basketball game, but he didn't think it changed anything.
“It really didn't matter, since we were playing games three days in a row, and going into the area tournament, that's what we expected to play anyway,” said Miller, whose Tigers defeated Okarche 51-40 Sunday afternoon.
“It's a little odd to be playing on a Sunday, but it wasn't too much of an adjustment.”
Miller kept his team in Enid Saturday night, as opposed to driving back and forth from Laverne, like they did Friday. He put his team through a shootaround Sunday morning before lunch, the same schedule he would have used for a game on any other nonschool day.
The Okarche girls clearly didn't have any type of poor reaction to playing on Sunday, rolling to a 58-28 win over Seiling to earn the team's 23rd state tournament berth.
More of a worry for coach Cherie Myers was how her team would react to a heartbreaking, last-second loss to Cheyenne-Reydon Saturday night.
“You know, with 15- or 16-year-old kids, you never know how they'll do,” Myers said. “But this group has been resilient, and they've handled adversity throughout the year.
“When we came into the area tournament, we talked about it. You've got two ways to get to state, and it doesn't matter which way you go — front door, back door or whatever — you've got to get in there.”
As is the case with a few select small-school towns, going to the Big House is more an expectation than a hope, and Okarche certainly falls into that category.
“You don't put on an Okarche Warriors jersey without expecting to go to the state tournament,” Myers said. “We talk about it to the point that, yeah, it's a goal, and if you play hard and do things right, that will take care of itself. You've got people up in the stands, parents who played in the state tournament and grandparents, so they expect it.”
Ranked No. 1 in Class A, the Warriors will go into state looking for their fourth state title, the last coming in 2010.