SALINA, OK —
Salina lost 70-62 to Chouteau at home, after a half court shot from junior Mark Cowan sent the game to overtime.
The struggling Wildcats squad gave Chouteau all they could handle at the inter-county matchup.
Salina’s defense in the first quarter afforded Chouteau rare looks at open shots.
Chouteau was up by three after the first.
Salina junior forward Colton Burgess went from heating up with paint-points in the first to red-hot the rest of the game.
Salina freshman guard Bryce Kerns nailed a shot from near midcourt as time expired for the half, bringing the sore to 32-32.
Chouteau led by as much as five points in the third, but Salina cut the lead again and trailed by three heading into the fourth quarter.
Down by one-point with 24 seconds remaining, Salina Head Coach Luke Folkerts drew up a brilliant back-door play designed for Burgess to capitalize in the paint, but the pass was over thrown.
Salina sent Chouteau senior point guard Jason Couch to the free throw line with 4.6 seconds left.
Couch made one free throw and then the incredible occurred.
To the dismay of the Chouteau supporters and the jubilation of Salina fans, Cowan banked a prayer off the glass from half court to tie the game as the buzzer sounded.
“He probably practices that shot more than he should,” Folkerts said in high spirits following the game.
In over time, three steals from three different players led to Chouteau’s eight-point win.
Salina’s Colton Burgess led scoring with a career-high 25-points. Cowan and sophomore Kyle Johnson had 11 points apiece.
Folkerts said his team picked up the pace offensively.
“We executed great,” said Folkerts. “Our guys deserved a win but just came up a little bit short.”
Chouteau’s head coach was unavailable for comment
Chouteau hosts Kansas Jan. 4 and Salina enters the Locust Grove Tournament Jan. 7-12.
The Salina Lady Wildcats crushed the Chouteau Ladycats 50-26 Tuesday.
A 7-6 Salina lead after the first period was the game’s closest point.
Salina’s decision to press in the second period wreaked havoc on Chouteau.
Consecutive Chouteau turnovers and Salina’s solid denial of passing lanes opened up a 40-17 lead heading into the fourth.
Chouteau scored 11 points in the fourth, but it wasn’t enough to rally.
Salina’s junior Kaisee Moore led scorers with 15 points.
Sophomore Morgan Littlefield had 11 and freshman Courtney Condit dropped eight.
Salina resumes play in the Locust Grove Tournament Jan. 7-12.
Chouteau takes on Kansas at home Jan. 4