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After struggling offensively in stretches during the early part of the basketball season, both the Durant Lions and Lady Lions put it all together on Saturday with a sweep of Tulsa Hale to close out the opening semester.
Durant’s girls notched their first win of the season with a solid 58-39 decision against the Lady Rangers and the Lions followed with a 78-66 verdict for their second straight triumph.
The next action for both teams is slated for Tuesday, January 8 when they host Ardmore.
Through one stanza it looked like it might be a dogfight as both teams reeled off 17 points in the first period as both Tristyn Hamilton and Annalee Jones tossed in five points apiece for DHS.
It was the second period when the Lady Lions took command by producing their highest scoring quarter of the season thus far with a 21-point eruption that was fueled by seven by Hamilton and another seven from Landri Sims off the bench.
Carrying a 38-30 edge to the second half, Durant put on the defensive clamps after the break, yielding just two points to the Lady Rangers in the third frame to extend the margin to 51-32 and cruised the rest of the way.
“We were a lot more aggressive offensively than we have been,” head coach Aaron George stated. “Tristyn really took control and had her best performance of the season. It was definitely a step in the right direction and should give us a little boost heading into the second semester.”
Hamilton wrapped up with 18 points to lead all scorers in the contest with Jones and Sims also reaching double figures with 11 points apiece.
Durant also picked up five from Karlie Westmoreland, three each from Madi Keel and Bradi McLemore along with two points apiece by Alli Keel and Chelsie Wilmoth.
The Lions took control early on and built a 20-plus point cushion before holding off the Rangers in the final stanza to record their second win of the week after stunning Ardmore on Tuesday.
Senior Tyler Hamblin pumped in nine points in the opening quarter to fuel a 23-11 advantage over Hale through one frame.
The second period was more of the same as the Lions were able to work for plenty of good shots while outscoring the Rangers 20-13 in the eight-minute flurry as Daniel Long fired in eight and Hamblin added another six.
Zyarius Clark fueled the DHS charge in the third frame as he poured in 10 points in that period alone as the Lion lead ballooned to 62-42 heading into the fourth stanza.
George then substituted frequently in the final frame as his squad coasted home.
Four players reached double figures for Durant topped by Long’s 22 points. Clark contributed 18, Hamblin finished with 15 and Bryson Lyday scored 14.
Blake Burkhalter, Luke Gaines and Dominic Wynn all added two points.
“It was a really good week for us,” George commented. “We missed a lot of free throws at Ardmore but did much better at the line against Hale.
“We worked the ball for much better shots than we had been and got a lot of different people all involved in the scoring. It was a strong finish for us to the first semester and hopefully we can carry that over after the break.”