Beaver's Hadley Skaggs puts up a shot in the lane during Saturday's Regional consolation matchup with Mooreland. Beaver won the game 59-55 to advance to the Area tournament that starts Thursday. Photo courtesy Herald-Democrat/Brent Lansden
By JASON EPP
Leader & Times
It took overtime, but the Beaver Dusters earned a trip to the Class A Area Tournament in Weatherford with a 59-55 win over the Mooreland Bearcats Saturday night in Seiling.
Mooreland forced an overtime some incredible circumstances.
“I thought we came out and did what we had planned to do and Mooreland played into that pretty well except for the final quarter and their unconscious shooting,” Dusters coach Craig Schlessman said. “We held them in check until then.”
Beaver led by seven with less than two minutes left and looked to have gone up by nine when Gunhar Martin's shot off the drive rolled in, but instead Martin was called for a charge.
Mooreland then hit a pair of threes from beyond 25 feet to cut the Duster's lead to just one.
Mooreland got that one at the free throw line and forced overtime.
With major foul trouble heading into overtime, Mooreland decided to stall and held the ball for over three minutes until Beaver decided to foul to force them to make free throws.
“They didn't surprise us when they went into a stall,” Schlessman said. “We knew with the foul trouble they were in they'd try to shorten the game and limit possessions.”
Mooreland missed the free throws, and Beaver took advantage as Garrett Weber scored in the paint to give the Dusters a lead with less than a minute left.
Beaver then held Mooreland without a shot attempt, and forced them to send Andrew Jesko to the line with just seven seconds left. Jesko stepped to the line and sank both to put the game out of reach, and send the Dusters to the Area tournament.
Jesko finished with 16 points. He was just 2 of 7 from the field, but made 10 of 14 free throws.
Beaver grabbed the early lead in the game, going up 15-7 in the first quarter. Mooreland closed the gap by one before half, but Beaver still led, 27-20.
Beaver still led 37-31 after three, but were outscored 24-18 in the fourth that forced the overtime period.
Garrett Weber also finished with 16 points, and Jorge Rivera scored 14.
Beaver will take on No.13 Cheyenne-Reydon in the first round of the Area tournament, Thursday at 8 p.m on the campus of Southwestern Oklahoma State University in Weatherford.