McALESTER – One of the all-time classic high school basketball games in southeast Oklahoma played out Saturday in a three-overtime battle between Boswell and Wright City with a trip to the state finals on the line.
Fate tipped its hat the LumberJax as they took a 66-62 win over the Scorpions at the Southeast Expo Center. The loss ends the season for Boswell.
Once again, Boswell ended its playoff hopes just shy of a trip to the Big House. But there is hope: As injured senior Markell Henderson ends his run as a Scorpion, freshman Cameron Collier made his case as an emerging team leader.
Collier scored 27 points, but the Jax got timely shots from senior C.J. Nolen to keep pace and eventually push ahead to a spot in the Class A state finals later this week.
Boswell looked solid early, taking a 21-14 halftime lead on Collier’s inside slashing and inspired plays like a blocked shot from Rowdy Yates. Collier scored 12 in the third and Boswell still held a 41-35 lead into the final quarter.
Wright City cut the lead to four when Collier was called for a technical foul. The Jax hit both free throws, and one had to wonder if those would cost the Scorps. The ultimate answer is: Yes.
A minute later, the Jax tied the game on a put-back, capping a 13-7 run and forcing overtime.
Tracy Brown answered Nolen’s three in the first overtime, then Brown hit five of six free throws in the second extra frame, only to have Nolen tie the game at 60 on another long shot.
Collier’s floating shot bounced off the rim twice as time expired, forcing the third overtime. That would be as close as Boswell would come to the state finals. Wade Taylor opened the third OT with a three and the Jax outscored Boswell 6-2 to take the game.
Tracy Brown finished with 12, Caleb Brown added 11, Blake Shults had five and Ladarius Davis added four for Boswell.
Boswell’s senior scoring leader Markell Henderson sat out the last two playoff games with a knee injury.