ARDMORE - A well-balanced Durant Lions lineup took down the Hirschi Huskies of Wichita Falls, Texas, on Thursday in the Ardmore Holiday Festival by a score of 62-50.
The Lions advance to the winner’s bracket of the three-day festival with a 6:30 p.m. Friday contest against Deer Creek at Ardmore High School. The Antlers (No. 19 in 5A) defeated the host Tigers (5A No. 10) 64-58 to advance.
But it was Durant’s hot shooting which grabbed most of the attention Thursday. The Lions were 23-for-48 from the field and 10-of-14 on free throws.
Six of their seven scorers had eight or more points, and the bench contributed 21 points.
Durant raced out to a 20-9 lead after one quarter as Skye Lowe and Zac Cater combined for 13 points. The Lions were up as much as 20 before a seven-point run for the Huskies cut the halftime lead to 35-22.
Hirschi (No. 19 in Texas Class 3A) made it interesting with a 17-8 third quarter and trailed only 43-39 going into the final eight minutes.
The Lions closed with a 19-11 fourth quarter which included three big buckets for Will Engle and five critical free throws from Taylor Cox.
Lowe led the scoring with 15 points and he grabbed five steals. Cater and Tyler Stovall scored 10 each. Cox had nine points boosted by his 6-of-8 free throw shooting.
Lions post James Donelan scored eight points on 4-of-5 shooting and grabbed nine boards to go with four blocked shots. Engle finished with eight points and Layton Tubbs had two points and five rebounds. Landry Wright added four rebounds, one assist and one steal.
Other boys scores from the Ardmore Holiday Festival:
Carl Albert 78 Plainview 34
Western Heights 59 Yukon 37
12:40 p.m. - Wichita Falls Hirschi at Ardmore
2 p.m. - Plainview vs. Yukon
6:30 p.m. - Durant vs. Deer Creek
8 p.m. - Carl Albert vs. Western Heights
(Note: The Democrat got three of four picks right from its Thursday predictions.)