With Anadarko leading 47-46 late in overtime, most teams would sit on the ball. Sophomore sensation Lakota Beatty had other ideas.
Beatty misfired on a 3-pointer, hustled for the rebound and fired another one up, this time hitting fron long range with 1:04 left in the OT to help the defending Mid-America champs knock off Shawnee 51-48 in the tournament opener.
Anadarko, ranked No. 6 in Class 4A, improved to 4-0 on the year while Shawnee (No. 3 in 5A) fell to 4-1.
“That’s exactly the way we wanted it — we wanted overtime. We got exactly what we dreamed about,” joked Anadarko head coach Lance Weeks. “I’m glad that one is over. It was a good win.”
It was Beatty’s teammate, fellow sophomore Tajah Black, who hit the biggest 3-pointer of the night for the Lady Warriors. After Shawnee center Caitlyn Ramirez had given her team a 43-40 lead with two free throws with 19.1 ticks left in regulation, Black took a pass from Beatty and calmly sank a game-tying 3-pointer with just under three seconds left on the clock. Black finished with 10 points off the bench.
“She’s a sophomore off the bench, and wasn’t expected to play much and she hits a three to tie it, and on the previous possession dug out a rebound and kicked it out for another three,” Weeks said. “She had a good game.”
Kelsey Grovey’s desperation 3-pointer from a few steps across halfcourt was just off the mark as the buzzer sounded, forcing the four-minute extra session.
After Beatty’s big triple in overtime put Anadarko up 50-46, Ramirez — Shawnee’s 6-1 move-in from Moss — scored inside with 42 seconds left to cut the Anadarko lead to 50-48.
Beatty then hit one of two free throws with 17.9 seconds remaining to put the Lady Warriors ahead by three.
After a Shawnee timeout, Grovey couldn’t connect on a pair of 3-point shots (the first blocked by Anadarko’s Jalen Tiger — in the closing seconds. Grovey, who struggled offensively most of the night, still just missed double digits with nine points.
Shawnee hit its first two shots of the game — a 3-pointer by Grovey and a Ramirez bucket inside — to grab an early 5-0 lead. But the Lady Wolves followed with 11 straight misses and finished the first half 5-of-19 from the field, and trailed 21-14.
A Black basket with just under four minutes left in the third quarter gave the Lady Warriors their biggest lead of the game at 26-16.
But Ramirez, who scored just four first-half points, finally got untracked for the Wolves. She hit two free throws with 5:25 left that got Shawnee within two at 30-28, and two more charity shots with 1:38 left in regulation knotted the score at 36-all, setting up the exciting finish. Ramirez finished with 22 points and nine rebounds.
“I guess I started coaching about that time, and we squandered it,” Weeks said of his team’s vanishing double-digit lead. “Early in the game, I thought we did a good job on the Ramirez girl. At the end she started playing better, and we didn’t respond. We’re very fortunate to come out with a win.”
Beatty had an outstanding opener for Anadarko, finishing with a game-high 26 points to go with eight rebounds and four steals. The game did feature a few rough spots with a combined 43 turnovers between the two teams.
“When you come to a tournament like this, you hope to just get one win. We have one so all is good,” Weeks said.