EDMOND, Okla. — Head coach Christy Edelen has spoken of Chickasha’s best game to come for much of the last month.
After Thursday night’s area clash, she hopes there is even more to come. Chickasha took a73-61 win over Ardmore and into Saturday’s area consolation final at 3 p.m. Senior Alex Stewart led once again, with a game-high 30 points, just three-quarters worth of points.
But this deep into the postseason, you need those who don’t always top the stat sheets to come up big, and that’s exactly what junior Jacklyn Ramos did. She sank a season-high 18 points while bringing down six rebounds. Ramos was a threat on both ends, disrupting the Lady Tigers’ passing rhythm and getting a few steals.
Under Ardmore’s press, the Lady Chicks had little time to set up an offense early. Ramos stepped in during the controlled chaos to score a quick seven points for an early Chickasha lead.
But the press was working, and well. Kevy Davis and Skyla Stapleton grabbed a breakaway layup each to knot the game at 12-12. A three from Taylor gave Ardmore the lead, and they took it to four at the end of the opening frame.
A quiet nine first half points from Tee Taylor set her on the way to lead Ardmore with 21 points, but hers were the only buckets falling consistently.
Far from quiet, in steps Stewart, who had clearly had enough of the zero by her name in the scorer’s book. Back to back steals and subsequent layups cut the Ardmore lead to three, and a long shot from freshman Karissa Duke tied things up. At 33-33 by halftime, a frantic game was sure to become even more so later.
The Lady Tigers came out in a strong triangle-two defense to start the second, trying to halt the flood of buckets inside from Chickasha. It was shattered by Ramos alone. She scored the opening five points and added another three pointer and a bucket for good measure, and suddenly Ardmore’s game plan had to be frantically redrawn.
Everyone was getting in on the action as Chickasha took to forcing turnovers, and Taylor Sylvester was strong on the block with 10 rebounds and five blocks on top of four points. They started on a 10-0 run and ended the quarter with 24 points while holding Ardmore to just 11.
Dominique Golightly, whose nine points on the night qualify as quiet by her recent standards, was a big reason behind the large spread of wealth for Chickasha. She finished the game with nine assists, so close to a type of double-double she’s not accustomed to getting.
Chickasha led by as much as 16 on their run, and they led by 13 to start the fourth quarter. Freshman Meredith Noland, who has shown signs of improvement as the regular season ended and the playoffs began, was there when the Lady Chicks needed her on multiple occasions. She put in nine points, including a crucial base line jumper plus foul to counteract the three point shots falling at the other end, particularly two by Taylor to keep things close.
The win is a solid response to a loss last weekend against Piedmont and gives Chickasha five wins in their last six games. They’ll carry that form into the weekend against either No. 1 Shawnee or El Reno.