Tecumseh — The Ada Cougars employed an effective 1-2 punch from the inside and out in earning a 55-49 victory over the host Tecumseh Savages Tuesday night in boys’ high school basketball action.
Junior forward Cory Kilby poured in 24 points and senior guard Walker Whitworth finished with 16, including four 3-pointers, as the Cougars improved to 4-1 on the season.
“Cory played harder and stronger in the post, and Walker opened up the inside when he made his threes,” said Ada head coach Ron Anderson, who notched his first-ever coaching victory at Tecumseh.
The Cougars, clinging to a slim 45-44 edge with 4:25 to go, outscored the Savages, 10-5, the rest of the way. Ada connected on all four of its free throws during that stretch (two each by Jamal Henderson and Kilby) in holding on for the win.
After Tecumseh pulled within 47-46 with 3:30 to go, the Cougars pushed their advantage to three, 49-46, when Kilby took a baseline feed from the corner by Henderson and executed the layup.
The Savages ultimately cut it two with 2:22 remaining with a free throw, but Kilby converted another close-range shot off a Whitworth feed to make it 51-49 with 2:09 remaining.
Tryce Prince and David Forbes, who finished with seven points, later combined for a steal with 1:40 left. The Cougars came up empty on two shots on the other end, but they managed to maintain possession with 43 ticks left on the clock. Kilby was ultimately fouled with 38.2 seconds left on the clock and calmly sank both free throws for a 53-47 lead.
Tecumseh pulled within 53-49 with 19.6 seconds to go. After a timeout, Whitworth shook free for an easy layup off a Prince inbounds pass to seal it for Ada and the six-point margin of victory.
“Turnovers hurt us, but our defense was as good as it has been all year,” Anderson said.
Ada will face Choctaw at 8:30 p.m. today in the East Central Oklahoma Classic at the Ada Cougar Activity Center.