Boys’ basketball run ends in semis

Jakolby Long Two

By Kyle Salomon,

TULSA – For the third time this year, Putnam City West got the best of Mustang ending the Broncos’ season in the state semi-finals last Friday night.

The Patriots defeated Mustang 64-55 at the Mabee Center on the campus of Oral Roberts University in Tulsa. The MHS’ loss to PC West ended the Broncos’ season one-game shy of the state championship, which was played Saturday night between Putnam City West and Tulsa Union.

Mustang finished the year with an overall record of 22-7. Head coach Terry Long said he is proud of the way his team battled the No. 1 team in the state.

“We expected to be playing on March 15,” Long said. “We said it from day one, and we knew that we had the team to do it. Who would have known Aubrey (Johnson) would break his foot? Who would have known Chandler Garrett would quit? Through all of that, these kids kept fighting and grinding.

“They had every reason to quit today, but they didn’t, and they hung tough. They’re playing the No. 1 team, and they gave everything they had, so I’m extremely proud of them.”

The first half was one to forget for the Mustang boys as PC West was dominating the game with their speed and athleticism on both sides of the court. The Patriots were seemingly making every shot they through at the rim in the first two periods. The Broncos trailed 41-21 at the halftime break.

The second half however, belonged to Mustang. The Broncos began to play with more intensity and focus on the defensive end, and executed their offense more crisply. They cut the Patriot lead in half by the end of the third period to 51-41 PC West.

Mustang got within three points in the fourth period, before being forced to foul in the last seconds of the game. Putnam City West made their free throws down the stretch making the final difference nine points in their favor.

“We played some zone, and we knew they were extremely quick,” Long said. “They shot the lights out in the first half, and in the second half, we just gritted our teeth and started matching up. We fought ourselves back in the basketball game.”

Mustang finished the night with 30 rebounds against PC West. The Broncos struggled on the foul stripe making only 11 out of 20 attempts from the line in the game.

MHS forced the Patriots into 12 turnovers and committed 15 themselves.

Three players scored in double figures for the Broncos. Sophomore forward Austin Meyer had 13 points and nine rebounds. Senior guard Demarion Love finished with 12 points and six rebounds and sophomore guard Jakolby Long totaled 12 points and three rebounds in the game.