There were two major differences in the highly anticipated boys basketball showdown between Class 4A No. 1 Heritage Hall and the Class 5A No. 7 Ada Cougars when the two teams squared off Tuesday night inside the Cougar Activity Center.
Ada committed 18 turnovers, and Heritage Hall outscored the Cougars 15-0 from the charity stripe in the Chargers’ convincing 49-32 victory.
Heritage Hall stayed unbeaten at 4-0 on the year, while Ada fell to 1-1.
The Cougars will try to rebound at 5:30 p.m. today, when they face Cache in the first round of the Southern Oklahoma Invitational in Duncan.
“I don’t think we played very intelligently. We forced things and had unforced turnovers. We didn’t execute the things we work on every single day offensively,” said Ada head coach Garland Parks. “They’re a good team, but I think we beat ourselves. We just have to play a little smarter and more under control. But we will. It’s early. We still have time to get better, if that’s what the guys really want.”
The Chargers sank 15-of-20 free throws during the physical game, and Ada didn’t make a trip to the line. That stat left Parks scratching his head.
“That’s unheard of. I don’t remember the last game I saw or coached in where that’s ever happened,” he said. “But we also didn’t take advantage of some of our paint opportunities.”
Ada stayed within striking distance for much of the first half.
Trey Havens hit a long two-point shot to end the first quarter and got Ada within 10-7 heading into the second.
Jaxson Robinson and Havens each drained 3-pointers early in the second period, and Heritage Hall led just 15-13 at the halfway point.
The Chargers began to take over from there. Heritage Hall finished off the second frame with a 10-2 surge to grab a 25-15 halftime lead.
Ada playmaker Kobe Burgess, who picked up a quick second foul at the 3:12 mark of the first quarter and didn’t play again the rest of the first half, drove to the basket and scored to open the third period to get Ada within eight. He didn’t score again until his lay-in in the lane at the 5:52 mark of the fourth period, which got the Cougars within 38-29. Burgess finished with just four points.
From there, the Chargers finished the game on an 11-3 run.
Heritage Hall standout Trey Edwards poured in a game-high 28 points. He hit three 3-point shots, made 11-of-16 free throws and also had four rebounds and five steals.
Will McDonald also hit double figures for the visitors with 10 points, while Jack Spanier hit a trio of 3-pointers and scored nine points to go with four steals.
Robison scored 13 points on 5-of-7 shooting (3-of-4 from beyond the arc) before fouling out. He also had nine rebounds.
Tanner Gilliam scored eight tough points in the paint for the hosts, while Havens followed with seven points.