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Kelly Smith
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KHS has stellar All-State showing

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Local athletes wrap up standout prep careers during OCA’s showcase event

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    STONE SNODGRASS, second from left, won his All-State wrestling match 1-0 last week. He's pictured with his KHS coaches, from left, Fay Barnet, Ed Even and Stan Blundell. [Photo provided]
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    Among the KHS athletes and coaches taking place at the OCA All-State games last week were Trey Green and Danny Green in boys basketball. Danny coached his son Trey in the Large West Win. Among the KHS athletes and coaches taking place at the OCA All-State games last week were
  • Article Image Alt Text
    Peyton Burns prepares to tee off in boys golf. Among the KHS athletes and coaches taking place at the OCA All-State games last week were
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    Jett Sternberger warming up for the football game. Among the KHS athletes and coaches taking place at the OCA All-State games last week were
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    KINGFISHER COACH Chris Combs, right, was presented OCA awards last week in Tulsa. Making the presentation is fellow KHS coach Micah Nall who is representing the OCA. [Photo provided]
  • Article Image Alt Text
    KINGFISHER COACH Stan Blundell, right, was presented OCA awards last week in Tulsa. Making the presentation is fellow KHS coach Micah Nall who is representing the OCA. [Photo provided]

During his tenure as Kingfisher High School girls basketball coach, one of the additions Jay Wood made to the locker room was a wall with all of the Lady Jackets who have earned All-State in that sport.

“That wall was inspiring to me, and at that moment I knew I wanted to be one of those women,” said Katelyn Stolz, who wrapped up her playing career in March.

“My mom asked me what my goal was and I told her that I wanted to make that wall.”

It’s time to add her name to it.

Despite it being on short notice, Stolz made her return to the basketball court last Wednesday night when she took part in the Oklahoma Coaches Association All-State game at the Oral Roberts University Mabee Center.

Stolz got the call Tuesday that she’d been selected for Wednesday’s game.

“I was very nervous,” said Stolz, who said she hadn’t played basketball in three months.

“I didn’t know if I could have my shot down by then or if I could remember to even play defense.”

Turns out, she had little to worry about.

Stolz answered the call with six points - and no missed shots - in the West’s 80-41 thrashing of the East in the girls large-school game.

Playing well at All-State was just icing on the cake for Stolz.

“As I stepped onto the court, I felt like my dream finally came true,” she said. “It felt amazing to achieve this goal that I worked so hard for and I will never forget this experience.”

That’s why, when Wood called her Tuesday, she didn’t mind making the quick trip to Tulsa.

“I didn’t think I would ever get to play a competitive game of basketball again, so I’m glad I got that call,” she said.

Stolz was a multiple-sport standout for KHS.

She led the Lady Jackets in scoring and rebounding as they reached the area tournament.

Stolz was also an all-conference softball player who signed to play at Southern Nazarene University.

Stolz was just one of multiple success stories for KHS athletes throughout the week in competitions held in the Tulsa area.

From the golf course to the basketball courts to the wrestling mat to the gridiron, KHS standouts shone yet another bright light on the community at last week’s Oklahoma Coaches Association All-State games.

It started first thing last Monday morning when Peyton Burns helped the West defeat the East 13-11 in boys golf.

The golf competition pits multiple two-man teams from the West against two-man teams from the East.

It features a scramble for the first six holes, alternate shot the next six and best ball the final six holes.

One point is awarded to the team that wins each of the three formats and then another point for overall score.

Burns and Piedmont’s Hunter Oden teamed up to tie Jackson White of Regent Prep and Davis Woodliff of Bishop Kelley, 2-2, in their competition at Cherokee Hills Golf Club.

Burns and Oden won scramble and best ball. White and Woodliff won alternate shot and edged the West duo by one stroke in the final score to tie up their competition.

However, the West got enough points overall to win the entire competition.

Two nights later, Stone Snodgrass scored an escape against Sallisaw’s Alec Capehart in their 145-pound wrestling match at Sand Springs High School.

That was the only point scored in the match as Snodgrass grappled his way to an individual win and was a part of the West’s 30-27 victory overall in the small-school (4A and below) competition.

Snodgrass scored his point on a basic stand-up escape in the second period and made the lead stick.

“People watching don’t really think about stand-ups and stuff as much as all the flashy moves,” Snodgrass said. “That’s always been funny to me because it’s the most important and that’s what usually wins close matches.”

Snodgrass made waves in the Class 3A regional when he pinned Mangum’s Stetson Ryan in the quarterfinals and Marlow’s Kobey Kizarr in the semifinals en route to a runner-up finish at 138 pounds.

Ryan had pinned Snodgrass in the district duals earlier in the season. Kizarr, meanwhile, was the top-seeded wrestler in the weight class and went on to win the state title at 138.

Sickness caught up to Snodgrass at state as he was pinned in his two matches.

All-State gave him a shot at a bit of redemption.

“It was great,” Snodgrass said of winning his final match. “What I really liked about it is that my last match was a good one that lasted until the last period instead of ending in the first.”

Trey Green suffered just one loss during his senior basketball season at KHS and it came on the very Ma-bee Center court in which he was playing in the All-State large-school game.

There was no loss this time around as Green scored eight points in the Large West’s 109-89 thumping of the East.

Green has been rehabilitating his foot since having surgery in March just after the end of the high school season.

Thursday marked his return to the court.

“It felt really good,” Green said. “I was only going to play a few possessions but ended up playing the same minutes as everyone else.”

Green played about 11 minutes.

“I didn’t go hard on defense or attack my hardest on offense, but it felt good getting up and down the court.”

Green helped KHS to a 28-1 record and a second Class 4A state championship in three years during his senior campaign.

The game also allowed him the chance to share the sideline with his father.

Danny Green was one of the coaches for the Large West.

“It was a really cool experience anyway, but to have him there with me made it even more special,” said the elder Green.

“I should be used to it. I have coached him almost every game he has ever played since he was little. Next year will definitely be a big change.”

The week wrapped up Friday night with the annual All-State football game at Bixby High School.

Kingfisher’s Jett Stern-berger was a part of history as the West blew out the East 58-17.

The game set a record for most combined points (75) and the most points scored by a single team.

Sternberger did his part to help.

Playing for the first time since November, Sternberg-er was 5-for-5 through the air for 75 passing yards.

He ran it another seven times for 69 yards, including a 5-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.

“It took a few days to get back in the groove,” Stern-berger said of playing football. “But I was feeling good by Friday in all honesty.”

Sternberger had his pick of sports as he was selected as an All-State player in both football and basketball.

He chose to give football one last shot before continuing his basketball career at Rogers State University.

His TD was part of a 35-0 scoring binge for the West.

The East took a 7-0 lead early and was up 14-7 after the first quarter before the West’s extended burst.

In all, the West outscored the East 51-3 over the final three quarters.

Two KHS coaches were honored with OCA awards during the week.

Chris Combs was presented the Regional Assistant Coach of the Year Award for his efforts in basketball. The award encompasses all sports.

Stan Blundell was named the Regional Coach of the Year in baseball as he guided the Jackets to the Class 4A state semifinals for the first time in school history.

Notes:

• Also locally, Okarche’s Cris Avila played for the Small West in boys basketball. His team was defeated 113-76 by the East.

•  Crescent’s Hunter Bowers was a part of the West’s win in football. The preferred walk-on at Oklahoma State recorded multiple tackles on defense.