Shawnee stops Lady Cougars with big second half

Ada’s Kortni McNutt (11) catches the basketball last week against Madill. On Friday, the Shawnee Lady Wolves (No. 18 in Class 6A) used a big second half to pull away from the Lady Cougars in a 44-25 win.

SHAWNEE – After battling a solid Class 6A squad to a 12-all tie through one quarter and only falling behind 20-17 at halftime, the Ada Lady Cougars fell into what appeared to be a fear factor in the final 16 minutes Friday night.

The 18th-ranked Shawnee Lady Wolves outscored Ada 24-8 in the second half in registering a 44-25 victory.

The Lady Cougars, 3-3, were nearly shut out in the third quarter until Lillie Speed sank a 3-pointer at the buzzer. In fact, Ada attempted only 14 shots from the floor in the second half (making just three) and couldn’t overcome 18 turnovers for the game (nine in each half).

“We came out a little hesitant … a little scared,” said Ada head coach Christie Jennings. “We hadn’t played anyone as tough as Shawnee. In the first half, I thought we executed pretty well. In the second half, it was a lack of experience and youth. We turned down good shots and then tried to force things.”

Makyra Tramble and Kasey Rice combined for five 3-point makes, and each finished with 15 points to fuel the Lady Wolves. The team totaled 11 steals on the night, including three from Rice and two each from Tramble and Aubrie McGehee.

Shawnee shot 47 percent from the floor and connected on 5-of-7 free throws, while Ada was only 32 percent while connecting on 2-of-3 free shots. The Lady Wolves ended up with 11 turnovers on the night.

Senior Mikala Emarthle led the Lady Cougars with seven points and six rebounds. Next scoring high for Ada was freshman Landyn Owens with five.

The Lady Wolves enjoyed first-quarter leads of 8-6 off a Kalynn Daniels 3-pointer and 12-8 off back-to-back baskets by Dezmonty Wright and Emarthle.

But Shawnee scored the final two buckets of the quarter in the final 33 seconds to force the tie. The Lady Wolves went on to the 20-17 halftime advantage, but neither team scored in the final 3:13 before intermission.

The Lady Cougars’ deficit swelled to start the third quarter as Shawnee scored 10 unanswered points, including two treys from Tramble. Rice and Brooklyn Rice each hit a short-range shot during that span.

The Lady Wolves, leading 30-20 through three periods, staged a 13-0 run in the fourth quarter to put it away.

Ada plays tonight Seminole.

Jeff Cali has been covering sports in the Ada area since the mid-90s. He graduated from Byng High School and earned a bachelor’s degree from East Central University.