By Chuck Reherman
Yukon’s freshmen Millers went into Monday night’s game knowing they had not won a game since Dec. 11.
Against their rival, the Millers ended 49 days without a win.
The Millers held off a late comeback attempt and Tristan Brooke’s free throws with less than 30 seconds remaining lifted the Millers to a 46-43 win over Mustang Monday night in the freshman version of Bedlam on the Court, at the YHS gymnasium.
Yukon’s last win came over Southmoore on Dec. 11. The Millers have been 0-5 since (the team did win a game in the Coyle Tournament, but that was a combined team with junior varsity players) and built a 10-point lead with two minutes remaining in the game and had to hold on in the closing seconds.
“It seems like we have to make it a dramatic finish every game we play,” Miller coach Matt Houston said. “We have played in three overtimes games this year. I don’t think we have played in three combined in the last three years, and it wouldn’t have surprised me if we would have played in a fourth.
“I was happy with the way we came out in the second half, we came out scoring and have struggled against the 2-3 defense all year long,” Houston said. “Defensively, we have focused on defense the last few weeks and it has shown.”
The Millers led 44-34 with two minutes left in the game, but two missed shots and two turnovers led to a 9-0 Mustang run that cut the lead to 44-43 with 44 seconds remaining.
Brooke’s free throws with 35 seconds remaining gave the Millers a three-point lead.
Mustang had a chance to tie the game, but missed the shot. Yukon worked the clock down to 14 seconds, tried a shot, missed and Mustang rebounded. A second Broncos try missed, Yukon rebounded and was fouled. The Millers missed the free throw, Mustang rebounded and got a third chance, but missed again and the Millers rebounded and iced the game.
“I thought we did a good job, called a couple of time outs to reassure them of where we are at in the game,” Houston said. “That is one thing that we have been working with them on, teaching them the situations we are in. We were up by three and as long as we force a contested three, we can give up a two and not have to inbound the ball.
“We had some good looks, we just didn’t finish. I don’t think we forced any shots, we did in the first half, but we got better looks and didn’t force anything. It has been a process. We have lost some games that are really close, but we are progressing well.”
It was a back and forth game early on. A three-point play by Ryan Weeks gave the Millers a 7-6 lead and a second three-point play from Kenny Love gave the Millers a 12-11 lead.
Mustang got seven points from Rodney Nunes and took a 21-17 halftime lead. A pair of buckets each from Colby Baker and Brooke sparked the Millers to a 14-6 run and a 33-27 lead late in the third.
Love led the Miller scoring with 10 points, Sanford Arnett and Brooke added eight each and Weeks and Cache Nease had five each. The Millers hit 18 of 45 shots from the floor (two of 10 three-point tries) and was eight of 15 at the line. The Broncos were 16 of 44 from the field (three of 12 trey attempts) and eight of 13 at the line.
The Millers travel to Edmond North Monday for a 6:45 p.m.
game with the Huskies.
By Chuck Reherman