“It was just a brutal grind,” Hutchison said. “Not only are Timberlake and Burlington top-eight teams and definitely worthy of that, you see them in conference.
“Everybody knows what everybody does. You know your individual characteristics. It's tough to score in games like that.”
ARNETT READY TO PROVE ITSELF
Tyler Tune is one of two starters back from Arnett's state runner-up squad which lost to Forgan, 73-39, in last year's Class B state championship game.
“We've been pushing ourselves since,” said Tune, who averages 27 points and 14 rebounds per game for Arnett.
“No one thinks we can (win the state title) because we lost three starters and four of our top players (from last year).”
The Wildcats are better offensively than last year's team but probably not as good defensively, Tune said.
But the Wildcats are a motivated team after dumping top-ranked Forgan, 57-38, in the area finals last week.
“That gave us a lot of confidence,” Tune said. “We know we can come in here (State Fair Arena) and beat anyone.”
REPLACEMENT OFFICIAL NEEDED
Early in the second quarter of the Class A girls game between Turner and Frontier, referee David Craig went down with a right leg injury.
Craig's ankle buckled as he made a cut while making a call with Turner leading 28-12 in a game Turner eventually won 59-43.
After being attended to by trainers for several minutes, Craig stood up and struggled to put weight on the leg.
He left the game and was replaced by Brett Penick, who called the first game of the tournament between Okarche and Sterling.
Craig, who has called state tournament games for more than 20 years, will not return to action this weekend.
Penick had just left the area when David Jackson of the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association contacted him to return.
The game was delayed for about 25 minutes while Penick returned to the arena and changed.
Turner coach Shane Hill was concerned about how his team would react to the delay after building a big early lead.
“We had the ball and things were going well then you have that break in momentum,” Hill said. “You have to get the players back into it, you have to get the fans back into it when you get started again, it can affect you quite a bit.”
Frontier made a quick run immediately after the break but Turner soon answered and the Lady Mustangs never seriously threatened again.
ERICK WITHOUT MILLAR
Even without center Hannah Millar, Erick knocked off Timberlake 41-40.
Millar played during last week's area tournament with a partially torn ACL, but twisted her knee this week and completed the tear.
“Well, we didn't really have much of a post game, so a bunch of us had to step up and score as much as she did,” Erick junior Shyli May said.
Erick coach Justin Janz said the Bearcats played a faster tempo without Millar on Thursday, and will continue to do so during Friday's semifinal against Shattuck.
But he was more impressed with how his team responded without the 5-foot-10 junior.
“Offensively, we're not near as good without Hannah, but it was good to see them come up with a win,” Janz said. “You talk about kids stepping up, they stepped up and played well. I'm proud of them.”