By Ryan Costello, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle
ENID, Okla. —
Before the Chisholm boys basketball team hit the floor for its home opener Tuesday against Blackwell, public address announcer John Petersen urged the home crowd to welcome coach Cody Spurlock to his first home game at the Longhorns’ helm.
And they did.
“It’s just fun being the head coach on this floor,” said Spurlock, a longtime assistant coach with the program before taking over this season. “It made me pretty proud to be a Longhorn tonight.”
Spurlock’s team looked to be headed toward making its coach even prouder with win against Blackwell, forcing six Maroon turnovers to take a 14-10 lead after the opening quarter.
But a Blackwell adjustment assured otherwise.
“They went to the zone and that really stifled us,” Spurlock said. “The first quarter, they were in man, and we were able to run our sets. But their zone was really wide, and we just couldn’t penetrate it.”
Blackwell’s wide-ranging 3-2 zone limited Chisholm to just two baskets in the second quarter against eight turnovers, opening the door for a 60-39 Blackwell win.
The Maroons outscored Chisholm 29-15 in the middle quarters, and 5 minutes, 28 seconds into the fourth quarter, the Longhorns’ rally had been held to a single point — an Austin Grieshober free throw — before Reid Weber hit a short jumper that came with his team already down 17.
“(The scoreless stretches) killed us,” said Weber, who led Chisholm with 12 points. “The second quarter, we planned to come out with intensity, but that 3-2 defense just killed us.”
Spurlock tried fouling in the final minutes to pull the Longhorns back into contention, but Blackwell, now 4-0, hit 15-of-20 free throws, scoring 21 in the quarter to hand the Longhorns their first defeat of the season.
“(Disappointment) is part of it,” Weber said. “You’re going to win some, you’re going to lose some, and you can’t let that define you.”
“This group will handle it fine,” said Spurlock, who now is 1-1 as the Longhorns’ head coach. “They don’t like to lose — nobody likes to lose — but this group will come out tomorrow and work on the things we didn’t do well.”
Reid took his coach’s assurance a step further.
“It’s definitely not the last you’re gonna hear of us,” he said. “This loss stinks, but we’re going to come back. We’ve got Blackwell at their house, and we’re gonna give them the same treatment they gave us.”
Lady Longhorns 60, Lady Maroons 40
Not even Megan Galusha knew who the leading scorer was in the Chisholm girls basketball team’s home opener against visiting Blackwell on Tuesday.
It was, for the second time in as many games this season, Galusha herself, who paced all scorers with 25.
“I did?” she asked. “I felt pretty good.”
Yes, she did, and it was more than enough for the Lady Longhorns, who suffocated the visiting Lady Maroons with full- and half-court traps throughout, forcing 26 Blackwell turnovers in a 60-40 win.
“They’re very good at baiting the passing lanes and jumping those lanes,” Blackwell coach Wade Wright said. “(Chisholm coach Terry Middleton) does a good job, they do a good job with that.”
The defensive pressure helped Chisholm stay in the game in the first quarter, when the Lady Longhorns, who were down just 12-7 despite shooting 2-for-13 from the floor and missing five of eight free throws.
“The first home game is like having another opener,” Middleton said. “We get some pregame jitters, but we got it worked out.”
And when they did, the tide changed in a hurry.
Galusha had three steals — two of them resulting in easy breakaway layups at the other end — in the second quarter, keying a 15-1 run that took advantage of 11 Blackwell turnovers in the frame.
From there, the Lady Maroons only challenged briefly when Ireya Calderon scored seven points in the third quarter, but a 23-12 run in the fourth sealed a 2-0 start for Chisholm.
“We did really well in the fourth quarter, I think,” Galusha said. “We had a lot of intensity, and we slowed the ball down to set up our offense. The other three quarters we just rushed it.”