MIAMI — An interesting way to practice paid off for the Miami boys in their 60-40 win over Oologah Friday, Feb. 2 at the MAC.
In an attempt to get ready for the Mustangs’ double-teaming defensive efforts, coach Rusty Mercer had MHS’ offense run up against six players on Wednesday and Thursday.
“We had to really be focused and not relax at any point because you are always going to see a double-team,” Mercer said. “We practiced against six people coming in for two days. I think it was easier to handle the ball against them tonight because of the six guys. That was kind of the idea.”
The Wardogs (9-10) attempted only eight 3-point attempts (hitting four), but nailed 22 shots from inside the arc, including 20 either from inside, on layups or put-backs.
Miami also helped its cause by grabbing eight offensive rebounds in the first half.
“They were probably a little more patient tonight than they have been,” Mercer said. “They like to shoot it a little quicker, but probably a lot of that had to do with our defense as well. We weren’t exposing our guys on an island. We were protecting the basket and they probably didn’t get some stuff that they normally do.”
Up by only two at the end of the first quarter, the Wardogs used a 15-2 run to close out the half to open up a 34-19 advantage.
Oologah (5-14) got back to within 19 heading into the fourth quarter, but MHS held the Mustangs at bay over the final eight minutes.
“We got a little lax there in the second half during a stretch,” Mercer said. “We only had four turnovers at halftime, but had a few too many turnovers when we were up. That’s understandable but at the same time you kinda want to not play the scoreboard. We got ourselves regrouped.”
Kaleb Jinks and Eli Lewis scored 13 and 12, respectively, for the Dogs.
Conner Womack, Brant Morris, Kai Hamilton and Eli Chenoweth had eight each while Drew Williams contributed a 3-point field goal.
“We shot very few mid-range shots,” Miami coach Rusty Mercer said.
This was the Wardogs’ fourth straight win against Oologah after going 1-4 in the previous five meetings.
It also came on the heels of a disappointing 54-41 loss at Catoosa Tuesday.
“This is what we needed,” Mercer said. “It was a good bounce back after dropping one in the fourth quarter against Catoosa the other night. We have a chance to be playing our best basketball now.”
Miami wraps up the regular season with three more home dates: Tuesday, Feb. 6, against 4A No. 13 Jay; Friday, Feb. 9, with Hilldale and Tuesday, Feb. 12, against Claremore Sequoyah.
Dominic Ruff had 16 points for Oologah.