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January 15, 2014

Young NHS squad still finding its way

MIDWEST CITY — Norman High’s young team has played games in the past few weeks that have shown how far they’ve come since the season began. Tuesday night against No. 9 Midwest City, the Tigers found out exactly how far they have to go.

The Bombers jumped out early on the Tigers on Tuesday and never looked back as NHS looked lethargic in the second half as Midwest City ran away to a 60-35 victory.

“This is the first game all year we didn’t have any fight,” coach Nichole Copeland said. “No one wanted a piece of them and to step up and do what it took on defense.”

The result was Midwest City senior Jasauen Beard running away with the game. The senior finished with 30 points and six rebounds and dominated the game every time she stepped on the floor. The Tigers tried rotating several defenders on her, but none were effective and there were several plays where Beard went coast-to-coast unguarded.

It was a lackluster effort for NHS (2-7), which could never mount a serious comeback attempt against the Bombers (6-1) and turned in its worst defensive performance of the season. Taylor Ely led the Tigers with 18 points and four rebounds, while Bethany Franks had 11 points and four boards. Franks had some success in the paint early, but as the game went on the Bombers’ size allowed them to dominate the lane. Midwest City outrebounded NHS 33-22 and were able to bully the Tigers for position inside on every almost every possession.

The Tigers stuck within striking distance early, but several missed layups kept them from ever coming closer than six points in the second quarter. Midwest City then went on a 10-2 run to close out the half up 30-18.

The Bombers put it out of reach early in the second half. They picked up the defensive pressure and forced NHS into a string of three straight turnovers, part of 16 NHS giveaways on the night. That allowed Midwest City to outscore NHS 14-4 in the period and put away the game.

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