|01/02/20 - |
he Ada High girls basketball team did everything but win during a road trip to Shawnee just before the holiday break.
The Lady Wolves, who were ranked No. 14 in Class 5A back then but have since climbed to the No. 8 spot, needed a shot with 12 seconds left in the game to clip the Lady Cougars 33-32.
Shawnee comes to town Friday night for a quick rematch. The girls game is set to start at 6:30 p.m., with a boys contest to follow at 8 p.m. inside the Cougar Activity Center. It will be Wipe Out The Wolves Night, and Ada fans are encouraged to wear their favorite beach attire.
The boys game should also be a dandy, with the Cougars (5-2) ranked No. 5 in Class 4A and Shawnee (4-1) entering No. 4 in Class 5A.
Jennings said her team didn’t play badly in the first meeting with Shawnee. The Lady Cougars simply couldn’t put the ball in the hole.
“Shawnee will always be Shawnee as long as (head coach) Wendi Wells is leading the program. Some would consider them down, but they are always going to play great defense and be in the right spots. Their coaches are going to make sure of that,” Jennings said before a Tuesday morning scrimmage. “We executed and played pretty good defense, but we just could not make baskets. It didn’t matter what we did, the ball would not go in the hoop.”
The Lady Cougars, No. 17 in Class 4A, are off to a 5-2 start to the season. The only other blemish on Ada’s record was a gut-wrenching 48-46 overtime loss to Class 6A No. 11 Sand Springs in the semifinals of the Bishop Kelly Invitational.
The Lady Cougars defeated host Bishop Kelley (No. 17 in Class 5A) 43-32 to capture third place in the rugged event and proved they could hang with the big dogs.
“We have really just been finding our identity. We have several kids that can score and defend. During the scrimmage season, we found out that we were pretty good. Then we went to the Bishop Kelley Tourney and realized how good we can be,” Jennings said.
“Sand Springs can really go, and we were with them step for step. We missed some free throws late, or we probably win that game,” she continued. “I think this group could be peaking around February, barring any injuries or sickness.”
Ada has spent the past two years competing in Class 5A before dropping back down to Class 4A this season. Jennings said the 4A waters are stocked full of sharks.
“Class 4A is loaded and is probably 20 teams deep. We are having a hard time staying in the top 15,” she said. “You have the usual powerhouses — Anadarko, Newcastle, Ft. Gibson — and then there are some other really good teams like Classen, Victory Christian and Muldrow. It’s probably the toughest class from top to bottom.”
Expect the Lady Cougars to be in that mix come playoff time.