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Jackets survive slow start against Eagles; Weatherford girls surge late

February 19, 2020 - 00:00
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    Kingfisher Yellowjackets vs. Weatherford Eagles

It was unfamiliar territory.

The Kingfisher boys basketball team - the No. 1-ranked defending state champions and winners of 40 straight - found themselves trailing after the first quarter.

And leading by “only” three points at halftime.

That was the “predicament” the Jackets found themselves in at Weatherford last Friday.

However, a dominant second half continued the trend to which KHS fans have been accustomed as Kingfisher won going away, 72-46.

Playing in front of a Senior Night crowd, Weatherford nailed four 3-pointers in the first quarter.

Three of them came from A.J. Stevenson, the last of which came near the end of the quarter and put his team on top 16-12.

The Jackets promptly responded with a 9-0 run to take the lead in the second quarter.

However, the surge didn’t continue.

Weatherford was able to hang tough despite scoring just seven points in the second.

The third quarter was a different story.

Jarret Birdwell and Matthew Stone began their dominant second halves, starting in the third quarter when KHS took command with a 17-3 run.

Birdwell scored eight and Stone five during that stretch.

It continued into the fourth as Kingfisher’s lead grew to as many as 27 points.

Both juniors scored 10 points each.

Birdwell did most of his damage at the foul line in the fourth, making all eight of his free throw attempts.

He ended with a career-high 22 points.

Stone led all scorers with 24 points to go with eight rebounds and five assists.

Bijan Cortes wasn’t as efficient shooting as he’s been all season and did have six turnovers.

However, he still scored 14 points and handed out nine assists.

The Jackets shot 56 percent for the game, including 70 percent (19 of 27) from inside the arc.

Birdwell missed just 2 of his 9 attempts. Stone was 7 of 10 on two-point shots.

Weatherford earns 3rd win over Lady Jackets

Kingfisher has eight losses this season, all to top-20 teams.

Three of them now are to Weatherford and have followed - for the most part - the same pattern.

KHS plays Weatherford close. Weatherford pulls away late.

That was the case again last Friday as 4A’s fourthranked Lady Eagles gradually earned a 58-44 victory against KHS.

The loss dropped Kingfisher to 13-8.

This time around, Kingfisher struck first. The Lady Jackets got buckets from Britt Taylor, Allison Green and Rayland Garner to take an 11-2 lead.

The stretch ended when Weatherford freshman Jordan Hoffman nailed a 3-pointer and was fouled.

Her four-point play kickstarted a 14-0 Weatherford run.

Although KHS kept within striking distance much of the night - including cutting its deficit to two points in the third quarter - it never led again.

Weatherford again hurt Kingfisher on the offensive glass. Although the teams had the same number of rebounds (33), the Lady Eagles had 15 on the offensive end.

That led to 11 second-chance points. Weatherford also scored 20 points off of Kingfisher’s 23 turnovers.

Addy Hoffman had five of those offensive rebounds - and 11 overall - and scored 10 points.

Jordan Hoffman led all scorers with 19. She started in place of Kennadi Price, who injured her knee in the previous Tuesday’s loss to Anadarko.

Jacey Thomas added 12 for the Lady Eagles.

Kingfisher, in foul trouble starting early, got a teamhigh 10 points from Green.

Taylor scored nine.