The Norman Transcript

Sports

July 9, 2013

NHS basketball squad making most of off season competition

NORMAN — The summertime is the most frustrating part of the year for Norman High basketball coach Matt Thornton.

“You can’t officially practice,” he said. “You’re watching summer league and trying to fix mistakes as you play, but when you don’t get practice time to fix those things it’s tough.”

Frustrating as it can be, the summer has been good to the Tigers. After losing several seniors from last year’s squad, Thornton was eager to get his team onto the court. And, after team camps at Carl Albert and Westmoore as well as a summer league at Edmond Memorial, Thornton likes what he’s seen.

Led by returning starters Cooper Clark and John Michael Benardello, the Tigers have changed tempo this season. Last year’s team was led by big man Sam Blodgett, and as a result the Tigers were more of a halfcourt team than Thornton is used to running. With a team dominated by guards, the second-year coach has opened up the offense this summer. Even Clark, who has played shooting guard in the past, has moved up to power forward at times this summer.

“My good team in the past have been four or five guards on the floor, and that’s more what we’re going to be this year,” Thornton said. “We’ll try to be more of a backcut-type team with more movement. Defensively we’ll probably pressure a little bit more, too. We’re not going to be an all-out, full-court press team, but we will put more pressure on.”

That style fits the roster nicely. Bolstered by Michael Patterson, a prolific junior varsity player last season, and Desmond Ognuo, the Tigers have more athleticism on the floor than they have in the past, something that Thornton is excited to bring to the game.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • Clash tennis Timberwolves win girls’ Clash before boys’ dual ends in a draw

    And Crosstown Clash tennis dominance goes too … Norman North, sort of....

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Much riding on Red River rivalry series

    Coach Patty Gasso said before last weekend’s road trip to Baylor that the Big 12 championship would run through Waco. The Sooners took care of that, taking two of three from the Bears to take control of the title race....

    April 17, 2014

  • Sooners hoping to keep momentum of marathon victory

    Practice was brief Wednesday afternoon at L. Dale Mitchell Park. Rest was more important than work after what Oklahoma had gone through the previous night....

    April 17, 2014

  • Pistons Thunder Basketball Thunder go all out against Pistons

    OKLAHOMA CITY —  Heading into the final game of the regular season, Oklahoma City coach didn't want to hear anything about a night off. With his team riding a two-game losing streak and fighting for playoff positioning, he treated it like a playoff game.
     

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • Fuller Westmoore's Fuller signs with Oklahoma Christian

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Tripp Fuller was looking for a school that fit him. One where the Westmoore senior would feel at home at....

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • North nearer to filling coaching vacancies

    A host of coaching positions in Norman are open for next year....

    April 17, 2014

  • Bucks owner Herb Kohl reaches deal to sell team

    MILWAUKEE — Bucks owner Herb Kohl has reached a deal to sell the franchise to New York investment firm executives Marc Lasry and Wesley Edens for about $550 million....

    April 17, 2014

  • Hopes high for Negro League stadium comeback

    PATERSON, N.J. — The light touch of a paint roller is enough to dislodge a chunk of plaster from the crumbling walls of Hinchliffe Stadium. Though silent for decades, the former home of several Negro League teams is getting another chance ...

    April 17, 2014

  • Ryu takes early lead in LPGA LOTTE

    KAPOLEI, Hawaii — So Yeon Ryu shot a 4-under 68 on Wednesday to take the lead halfway through a windy first round of the LPGA LOTTE Championship. Japan’s Ayako Uehara was one stroke back....

    April 17, 2014

  • Captain Tom teeing it up at RBC Heritage

    HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. — Tom Watson wants to take a closer look at American prospects for the Ryder Cup, so the U.S. captain is playing in the RBC Heritage this week....

    April 17, 2014

Facebook