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Eagles clip the Blue Devils in district hoops

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By The Staff

The Harriman Blue Devils traveled to Oakdale on Friday evening, but it was the Eagles who went “downtown” as they shot the lights out and sent the Devils home with their first district loss by a final score of 83-68.

“We shot a good percentage from the 3-point line the last few games. We shoot an even better percentage when we take shots in rhythm” says Oakdale coach Travis Nelson.

It was raining threes in the first quarter as Oakdale’s Jackson Hicks nailed three of his team’s five treys and the Eagle defense came up with six steals, but Harriman’s Spencer Moore added seven with two offensive rebounds and a steal to keep it close at 19-13 after one.

“We came out and had some turnovers early and played a little timid, we have to take better care of the ball” stated Harriman coach Shay Shannon.

Oakdale’s Nate Arrowood took over in the second frame and scored 12 of his team’s 27 points. The Eagles used a tough defense to once again outscore the Devils by four. Chris Worthy rallied his team with nine points and Moore added six more, but Oakdale goes to the locker room leading 46-36.

Harriman outscored the Eagles in the third and pulled within five as Worthy and Eli Duncan combined for four steals and Jaylen McCullum added five, but Arrowood added 10 more to keep the Devils from gaining the advantage. At the end of three, Oakdale led Harriman by a score of 63-57.

Nelson was concerned about his team’s shot selection in the second half stating, “I think because we made so many shots early that we began taking a few questionable shots and it got us out of our rhythm.”

The tough Eagle defense held the Devils to eleven fourth quarter points while adding 20 of their own. Arrowood and Hicks combined for 12 and McCullum added nine along with five rebounds for Harriman, but Oakdale holds on to win by a final score of 83-68.

Harriman (68) Worthy 18, Moore 17, McCullum 16, Duncan 8, Copeland 5, Arnold 4.

Oakdale (83) Arrowood 29, Hicks 22, Smith 10, Nelson 9, Best 4, Miller 4, Bingham 3, Poole 2.

In the girl’s matchup, veteran coaches Fred Snow from Oakdale and Harriman’s Dallas Davis, who spent his coaching career at Wartburg, but came out of retirement to help rebuild the Lady Blue Devils program, met for a renewed district rivalry game.

Snow and Davis have been highly regarded within the realm of coaching high school basketball and both have been rewarded with the gymnasiums at Oakdale and Wartburg being named after them respectively.

Friday night’s game would belong to Coach Snow and the Lady Eagles as they defeated Harriman by a score of 42-13.

The Lady Eagles jumped out to a 10-2 lead as they moved the ball around offensively to get the high percentage shot. Kaylee Headden nailed the trifecta twice to lead her team with six points and grabbed three rebounds, while Harriman’s McKenzie Breeden scored the lone basket as the offensive shooting struggles continued for the Lady Devils.

“We moved the ball around and shot very well and our defense played great, our bench came in and played very good and I was pleased with the overall effort,” Oakdale coach Fred Snow said.

Both defenses stepped up in the second and held each other to only three points. Hannah Coffey grabbed seven boards for the Lady Eagles and Harriman’s Olivia Goins snatched up four along with two steals. Oakdale took the halftime lead 13-5.

“It’s a little frustrating to take 27 shots in the paint and only hit two,” Harriman coach Dallas Davis said. “We are getting the ball where we want to, and the effort is there, but we need to focus on the fundamentals of shooting the ball and I would like to see the girls put in a little extra work to get that shooting percentage up”.

The Eagles started to make things happen in the second half as they stepped up their defense.

Destiny Ruppe had three steals and Coffey added six points and three rebounds as Oakdale extended their lead to double digits at 26-10. Christina Pack added three points and Shanel Cozart added two for Harriman.

Harriman’s offense continued to battle with good looks in the paint, but their shots were not falling, and the Lady Eagles took advantage of their woes by good defensive rebounding and good shot selection as they outscored the Lady Devils in the final frame 16-3 to make the final score 42-13.

Harriman (13) Pack 4, Cozart 3, Breeden 3, O Goins 2, Cannon 1.

Oakdale (42) Headden 8, Coffey 8, James 7, Ruppe 7, Hicks 6, Francis 3, Brackett 2, Jones 1.