By Chuck Reherman
Going into the final eight minutes, Yukon was poised to end a losing skid and earn their first win of 2019.
The Millerettes came up on the short end instead.
Southmoore rallied from a 36-30 deficit, holding YHS to six points and posted a 50-42 Central Oklahoma Athletic Conference game Tuesday night at YHS.
The Millerettes, 1-7, had led through most of the game and looked to be in position to get their second win going into the final quarter up 36-30.
The Millerettes pushed the lead to 37-30, but saw Southmoore go on a 17-3 run to put the game out of reach.
“I was really proud of the girls effort and being the aggressor,” Millerette head coach Roy Wyckoff said. “We started the game well, had the lead and was just undisciplined in the fourth quarter. They were fouling 50 or 60 feet from the basket, then we get hurried up on offense instead of calmly executing for a good shot. Then we would foul again 90 feet from the basket. We were just undisciplined down the stretch.
“I thought the first three quarters we were solid and did a lot of good things,” he said. “The fourth quarter I felt like we kind of gave it away. We started the fourth quarter up six and we were fouling them way far away from the basket when they were in the bonus and putting them at the free throw line with the clock stopped.
“I felt we needed to let the clock run and get some stops. We have to learn and have to get better.”
The Millettes had extended their lead to seven, 37-30 on a Sunny Middleton free throw a minute into the fourth quarter. Southmoore answered with seven straight points, five of them free throws. A rebounded shot from Erin Bean tied the game 37-37 with 5:38 remaining.
Meya Case hit one of two free throws put YHS back in the lead, 38-37. Kayla Nealy hit a shot in transition to put Southmoore back on top and the Lady Sabercats went on an 8-2 run to push their lead to 47-40 with one minute left to play.
A baseline jumper from Sydney Brown cut the lead to five, but the Millerettes would not score again and committed three fouls in the final 35 seconds that led to Southmoore’s final points.
The Millerettes had a tough night shooting the ball, hitting only 12 of 42 shots from the floor, including going two of 21 from behind the three-point line. YHS was 17 of 27 at the free throw line.
“We played aggressive tonight, but we have to play aggressive and smart,” Wyckoff said. “The first three quarters we did that well, we just played out of control in the fourth quarter.
“We took some positives out of the game,” he said. “If we play like we did in the first three quarters, we can do a lot of positive things,” he said. “We just have to regroup tomorrow and get after it.”
The Millerettes used the free throw line to their advantage in the first half, hitting 10 of 16 from the line to open a 22-18 lead.
Yukon tied the game three times in the opening quarter, the final on an A’munique Holmes field goal with 24 seconds left in the quarter, 8-8.
A driving shot by Case gave YHS a 10-8 lead early in the second. Trailing 18-14, the Millerettes used free throws from Brown and Jaylee Watson and a field goal from Brown to open a 22-18 lead.
Case led the Millerette scoring with 13, Brown had 11, Middleton added seven, Watson six and Holmes had five.
Bean and Brooklyn Haywood led Southmoore with 11 each.
By Chuck Reherman