The Daily Ardmoreite
  • Shelton's toughness powers Plainview to third-place win

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  • Plainview sophomore Rebecca Wright enjoyed the last laugh against Mustang senior forward Brooke Irwin. The Lady Indians' forward poked the ball free from Irwin at the free throw line with 35 seconds remaining. With Plainview clinging to a one-point lead, the Lady Indians' defense forced a jump ball to earn possession. Wright clapped briefly as the official indicated that Plainview owned possession. Coach Andy Bloodworth's team converted just enough free throws to secure a 52-49 victory and third place at the 31st annual Ardmore Holiday Festival on Saturday at Ardmore High School. Nine unanswered points allowed Plainview (3-1) to rally. Sophomore guard Megan Shelton hit the game-winning free throws with 0:49.09 remaining. “She's one of the toughest girls I've ever coached,” Bloodworth said. “She's got that 'it' factor. (She's) one of those girls that doesn't have a conscience. It doesn't matter if there's 7:59 on the clock or two seconds on the clock, she wants to get the job done. That's why she's voted a captain as the sophomore on this team. She brings so much.” Bloodworth added that she's doing a better job of being a vocal leader this season. Wright scored 11 of her team's 17 points in the opening quarter for Plainview. She scored two in each of the last three quarters. Her 17 points led the Lady Indians, but Bloodworth said his team's shot selection was a significant factor. “She's a legit 6'4,” Bloodworth said of Irwin. “Having a girl down there, with her size, that's definitely something that does play a role. I think we as a team had a whole lot to do with that. We've really been stressing over the last two games not shooting the ball so early in the possession. There were a lot of times tonight where we're making one pass and not making the defense move. A big key to getting Becca open in the middle is moving the ball around the perimeter. … That's something that we've got a lot of work to do to get better. Once we figure that out, we're going to be a pretty good team.” Plainview shot 1-for-10 from three-point distance in the third quarter. Irwin took advantage for Mustang. She drew the third and fourth fouls against Wright in the period, relegating her to the bench. Early in the quarter, Bloodworth said his team took lone range shots too early. “As the quarter wore on, and especially in the fourth quarter, we saw that patience sometimes is a little more productive,” Bloodworth said. “It's like I always tell them, 'Sometimes the more patient you are, the more points you score.' It works opposite of the way it sounds. We preach that a lot.” Wright returned to the game after a Plainview timeout at the 5:05 mark of the final quarter. The Lady Indians trailed 45-38 at the time. Bloodworth said he was most proud of the way his team maintained its composure. Despite losing five games to inclement weather, Bloodworth expects a lot of improvement from his team as the season progresses. “I think we're at the tip of the iceberg right now,” he said. The Lady Indians head to Tishomingo on Jan. 7.
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