Starting Friday, January 6, 2012 many of the local area schools traveled to Tushka to compete in their Basketball Tournament.
First up was the Antlers Bearcats against the Tushka Tigers boys team. This was a close point game though out the entire match-up. The first period was literally neck and neck as both teams were successful in keeping the other team from putting the ball through the net. At the end of the first period the Bearcats were ahead by only one point over the Tigers, 7 to 6. The second period only got more intense as the points continued to climb but neither team could break away with the lead. The second quarter ended with a score of 21 to 21.
After the half, there seemed to be a slight incline in points allowing the Bearcats to pull slightly ahead with a 34 to 29 at the end of the third period but Tushka wasn’t ready to give up yet. At the completion of the fourth period, and a dazzling performance by both teams, the Bearcats clinched the win over the Tigers with a final score of 51 to 42 and would move on to the next round. The leading point scorers for the Bearcats were Tanner Brown with 16 points, Harlan House with 11 points, Dakota Turner with 11 points, Jim Mician with 9 points, Arizona Taylor with 2 points, John Thompson with 1 point and Caleb Smith with one point.
The Lady Cats went up against Hartshorne at 4:30 p.m. Friday afternoon. The Lady Cats were able to keep a good point spread over Hartshorne the entire game, showing their defensive and offensive skills. At the end of the first period the Lady Cats racked up a total of 15 points and Hartshorne had 6. During the second period the Lady Cats continued to dominate and increase the point gap, ending the first half of the ball game with a 16 point lead, 26 to 10.
After the half the Lady Cats continued to hold Harthshorne to minimum scoring as they drove their score higher. At the end of the third period the score was Lady Cats - 45, Hartshorne - 20. The fourth quarter was more in the same for the Lady Cats as they proved that they had came to play. The final score was Lady Cats 65 to Hartshorne 31. The top scorers for the Lady Cats were: Megan Brame with 16 points, Taylor Tedder with 10 points, Railey Gardner with 9 points, Kendie Bryant and Cheyenne Simpson both with 7 points each, Hailey Garman, Cheyenne Owen and Chelsie Thomas all with 4 points each and Emma Branton with 2 points.
On Saturday, both the Bearcats and Lady Cats continued play in the winners bracket of the tournament. Also playing on Saturday were the Moyers Tigers who ended up taking 5th place - Consolation Champions, in the tournament. Their final game was against the Boswell boys team. Throughout the beginning of the game, Boswell managed to keep the lead and ended the third period with the score of 33 to 28 over the Tigers. During the forth period the Tigers came alive and showed that they still had some fight left in them as they ended the game with a tied score of 46 to 46, sending the game into overtime. At the end of OT, the Tigers had managed to overtake Boswell and became the Consolation Champions with a final score of 56 to 48.
The Tournament Finals for the boys were between the Antlers Bearcats and the Wright City Lumberjax. This game was a tight game throughout but the Bearcats just couldn’t keep the scoring power of the Lumberjax at bay. At the end of the first period it was all tied up with 10 points all, but as the second period’s time ticked away the Lumberjax began to pull away and the Bearcats never caught back up. At the end of the half the Bearcats trailed by 7 points with a score of 25 to 18, Lumberjax in the lead.
The third period was much in the same as the Bearcats did there best to keep up but continued to slowly fall behind. At the end of the third the score was Jax 41, Bearcats 31. The fourth quarter proved to be the final nail as the Jax ended the period with a total point accumulation of 60 to the Bearcats 46. The Bearcats walked away from the tournament as the 2nd Place team.
The Lady Cats would now face off against their opponent in the Tournament Finals, the Tushka Lady Tigers. This game was a real nail bitter as both teams showed extreme skill and determination. As the first period ended the score was Lady Tigers 17, Lady Cats 11. In the second period the Lady Cats pulled into the lead and managed to put a nice cushion between the scores, ending the half with a 31 to 23 lead.
During the third quarter the Lady Cats point spread closed together some but they managed to stay ahead with a 6 point lead over the Lady Tigers and ended the third with a score of 40 to 34. The fourth period was tense as the Lady Tigers fought back hard and almost took the game from the Lady Cats, but the Lady Cats held on and won. At the end of the game the final score was Antlers Lady Cats 55 to the Tushka Lady Tigers 51. The Lady Cats won the game and were named the Tournament Champions. Along with being named the Champs, Railey Gardner, senior, and a member of the Lady Cats was named Tournament MVP (most valuable player).
Congratulations to all the participants in the tournament, Moyers Tigers, Antlers Bearcats, Antlers Lady Cats and to Railey Gardner!