“They are high school girls,” Kannady-Sayes said. “It hit hard. They wanted to leave the Bartlesville game and go with their sister to the hospital. That’s what I kept hearing. As a coach, you’re proud that they are kind of getting the family concept that we’re trying to get toward here. But at the same time, as a coach, you’re telling the girls we have one more ball game in less than 24 hours. They didn’t care about that game. Their heart was with her and not worried about beating Putnam City.”
Hawkins was averaging almost 19 points a game to go along with 15 rebounds, 3.25 assists, 3.1 steals and 1.25 blocks.
The junior post also shot 56.5 percent from the field and 85 percent from the free throw line.
It’s going to take several people to replace what Hawkins brought to the table. While Kannady-Sayes said the whole team must increase production, the brunt of the burden falls to Kyeria Hanna, Jamia Shepard and Deasha Page.
“Obviously everyone on our team needs to step up,” Kannady-Sayes said. “She was our leading scorer, our leading rebounder. She usually guarded the other team’s best overall player, if not their best inside player. So everybody has to step up and come up with the points, coming up with the free throws. I think we all need to rally around and just do a little bit more until we get her back.”
Hawkins said she has faith her teammates can hold on until she gets back.
“I know that the team will play real hard and go without me,” Hawkins said. “I want to get back out there fast to play with them again. This is the first major injury of my career.”
Starting with Edmond Memorial tonight, the SaberCats have a string of Mid-State Conference games on the horizon. That includes Norman on Friday, Del City on Jan. 21, No. 8 Midwest City on Jan. 31 and Moore on Feb. 4. Hawkins could be back in time to face the Bombers.