AFTON — Afton was on the long and short end of a pair of close semifinal games here Thursday night in the Afton Coca-Cola Classic.
4 The Lady Eagles held off a late charge by Quapaw to claim a 46-42 victory in one girls’ semifinal game.
4 The Eagles saw Colcord score the game’s final five points to claim a 56-51 victory in a boys’ semifinal clash.
Afton’s girls now will face 3A No. 3 Kansas in Saturday’s 7 p.m. girls’ championship game.
The Lady Comets advanced with a 66-35 win over Oklahoma Union.
In the boys’ final, Colcord will battle Summit Christian of Broken Arrow. Summit bounced Oklahoma Union 57-42.
The boys’ final will be at 8:30 p.m. Saturday.
Today’s schedule includes four consolation games. Summit Christian faces Bluejacket at 4 p.m. and Colcord meets Fairland at 7 p.m. in girls’ action while Kansas meets Bluejacket at 5:30 p.m. and Quapaw tackles Fairland at 8:30 p.m. on the boys’ side.
The girls’ consolation final will be Saturday at noon, followed by the boys’ consolation final at 1:30 p.m.
The Quapaw and Oklahoma Union girls play for third at 3:30 p.m. with the Afton and OU boys squaring off at 4:30 p.m.
Quapaw’s girls had trailed by 10 points, 36-26, heading into the final stanza.
However, a 9-2 run — keyed by 3-point goals by Halie Judd and Kayla Chapa — narrowed the gap to 40-35 with 5:13 remaining.
A putback by Macy Gibson countered a follow shot by Judd, leaving Afton with a 44-37 edge with just over 3 minutes left.
The Lady Wildcats made it a five-point game again when Kaitlyn Brumley downed a pair of free throws.
Quapaw could have pulled even closer, but missed two of three free throw chances in the final two minutes.
A bucket from inside by Gibson, who was battling the flu, with 73 seconds left, gave the Lady Eagles the cushion they needed.
Gibson was one of five players who missed school on Wednesday due to illness. Also out were Shelby Van Pielt, Ashley Carroll, Olivia Shaul and Darby Todd
“They reached down and pulled it out,” Afton coach Gerald Sergeant said. “I am really proud of them.”
That changed the Lady Eagles’ defensive strategy through most of the game.
“We didn’t play as aggressive as we usually would,” Sergeant said. “We tried to save our energy. We didn’t run the full court press all the time. We only picked it up when they made a bucket.”
Gibson and Todd scored 14 points each to head up the scoring for Afton.
Paige Radford scored 15 points for Quapaw. She was joined in double figures by Brumley with 10.
“We played poorly offensively in the first half,” Quapaw coach Rod Graves said. “We did cut hard off picks. We didn’t set picks. We played on our heels. We were tentative.
“We didn’t play hard until we thought we might lose. Then we played the way we should have for four quarters.”
Colcord boys 56, Afton 51
In a game of streaks, Colcord had one at a critical point in the game.
Afton had tied the game at 51-51 on a bucket from inside by Ryan Markes on an inbounds pass from Tony Jarvis.
But that would be the final points of the night for the Eagles.
A drive by Kenzie Witt put the Hornets on top 53-51 with 49.0 seconds left.
Colcord iced the win with one free throw by Canaan Sherrill and two by Joe Morris in the final 25 seconds.
“They kept coming at us,” Colcord coach Rick Hendren said. “They were up early in the fourth quarter, but our kids did a good job. Kinzie did a good job getting us back in the game.
“Plus, we picked up the defense in the fourth.”
Colcord led most of the night, going up 16-8 in the first quarter.
The Hornets led 26-19 late in the half, but Afton ran off six straight points to close the gap to one by the half.
Afton finally got untracked in the third quarter, using a 20-14 advantage to take a 45-40 lead into the final stanza.
A bucket from inside by Ryan Markes gave Afton a seven point bulge with 7:43 remaining.
But back-to-back 3-point goals by Morris were followed up by two free throws and a layup by Sherrell that gave the Hornets the lead for good.
“In the fourth quarter, where we usually win, they got the best of us,” Afton coach David Markes said. “Witt had two big ‘3s’ when we were up by one. We let him get loose. There was a span in the fourth quarter where he took control.”
Colcord had three players score in double figures, topped by Morris with 20 points.
Witt and Sherrell chipped in with 17 and 13, respectively.
Ryan Markes had 21 points and Shawn Free scored 16 for the Eagles.