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Perkins, Oklahoma
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April 5, 2012     The Perkins Journal
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April 5, 2012
 

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! Sports THE JOURNAL, Thursday, April 5, 2012 - B3 Cowgirls crowned WNIT champions In a season that was marked with tragedy, the Oklahoma State Cowgirls completed a storybook ending with a 75-68 win Saturday afternoon over James Madison to win the program's first Women's National Invitational Tournament title in Gal- lagher-Iba Arena. The Cowgirls traveled the least of any team in any tournament this season as every WNIT game was. played in the friendly confines of GIA. And as the wins kept coming, the crowds kept growing, A crowd of 6,157 cheered OSU to the win. Hopefully that kind of support will carry on to next season as the Cowgirls will return the entire cast that made this emotional run. As you remember, OSU lost head coach Kurt Budke and assistant coach Miranda Serna to an air- plane crash that also killed pilots and supporters Olin and Paula Branstetter on Nov. 17. Associate head. coach Jim Littell took over in the interim but was later named the head coach. And to give the situa- tion a much more personal side, Littell recently lost his father as well. "I'm so proud of this group, (and) what they've accomplished this year. When you're talking in terms of the heart, it's been a long tough year. When you're talking in terms of basketball, this group has accomplished so much, and gotten so much better," Littell said after- ward. "They were excit- ing to watch. The stretch in the WNIT has done so much for this program: the confidence level, allowing a young group to continue to play, a chance to build our fan base. I'll be honest with you. Coach Budke, Coach Serna, the Branstet- ters, my dad have been on my mind a lot. As I said out there, our group decided in November that we were going to pay honor, and I don't think that there's any question that these ladies paid honor and did things right." During the ceremonial cutting down of the net, coach Budke's widow Shelley was bestowed the honor of cutting the last strand of the net that sepa- rated it from the rim. Littell added it was only fitting to allow her to be a part of the celebration. Against James Madison, junior Toni Young poured in 25 points to lead the way for the Cowgirls. This was on the heels of her Season- high 27-point performance last Wednesday night against San Diego. Young averaged 20.6 points per game during the tournament and secured most valuable player honors. This was the same player who broke her arm in first round WNIT action and was still ham- pered by it this season. She more than doubled her season average of 10 points a game. Freshman Liz Donohoe was also selected to the all- tournament team. Cowgirl Fever began gaining momentum within the past few games. Crowds steadily increased as the Cowgirls continued to win. One can look at it as jump- ing on the proverbial "band wagon" since this team was having some success, especially since the Cow- boys didn't even get a NIT consideration. Last Wednesday night's semifinals crowd was listed as just under 3,500 and all those cheering on the Cowgirls made their presence known through- out the contest. And when the game came to an end, it was announced the ticket office would be open for fans to get their tickets for Saturday's game. The lines were long and busy. It was then announced that Cowboys head coach Travis Ford and wife Heather would purchase 400 student tickets and give them away Saturday. Two more nameless donors added 100 tickets each to that total. What a way to show support to a team that endured what it did. With this tournament win, and the number of folks who followed the team along the way, here's hoping the fan base will continue to grow. Their performance has caused us to take a look at increasing coverage next season. We're planning to do that with the assistance of the dandy OSU media relations group. SOFTBALL Continued from Page eliminated following a 9-6 loss to Chisholm. P-T opened the week with a pair of triangulars. The Lady Demons traveled to Prague last Tuesday and lost to the host Lady Devils 6-5 and Varnum 6-1. The season opened last Monday at Kellyville with losses to the Lady Ponies 8-1 and Henryetta 15-2. For the week, McKenzie Martin went 12-of-19 at the B1 plate with four doubles for P-T. Sponsorships are now being taken for the softball booster sign located behind the first base bleachers. A contribution of $30 will get the donor's name on the sign. For more infor- mation, contact Hart at the junior high at 547-5715. Proceeds will be used for the softball program. Oklahoma State's Liz Donohoe (left) tries to steal the ball away from a San Diego player during last Wednesday night's WNIT Final 4 game at Gallagher-lba Arena. The Cowgirls cruised to a 73-57 win. Moving in to assist is Lindsey Keller (25). Journal photo by Kyle Lomenick JH baseballers lose first games of year Perkins-Tryon's junior high Demons lost their first games of the season last week. The week ended with a 10-1 loss here last Friday. P-T's lone win was an 18-0 thumping of Frontier here last Thursday. The week began with a 9-2 loss at Cushing last Monday. Against Kingfisher, the visiting Yellowjackets put the game away with five runs in the top of the fifth inning. Kingfisher was already holding a 5-1 lead before the rally. P-T's lone run came in the bottom of the fourth inning when Dillon Long- brake led off with a single then later scored when Bryce Well reached on an error. Kingfisher scored two runs in the first, one in the third and two more in the fourth. Longbrake and Brady Davis had P-T's only hits. Zeke Dougan was the losing pitcher. Against Frontier, the Demons exploded for 11 first inning runs that led to the three-inning run rule finish. P-T used 10 hits in sending 15 hitters to the plate. Zane Long and Reed Aldridge had multiple hits in the inning. Long clubbed a single and triple while Aldridge followed with a single and double. The Demons countered and later scored. Cushing cut the deficit in half with a run in the bottom of the first. The Tigers added four runs in each the third and fourth frames for the win. Zeke Dougan, Zane Long, Wells, and Nash Long each singled for the with bottom of the second. Joining Long and Aldridge with a pair of hits were Longbrake, Nash Long, and Scott Howard. Every player in the lineup got at least one hit and scored at least one run each. Davis was the winning pitcher in two innings of work. He gave up two hits and walked four but struck out three. Brady Dougan worked their third inning in relief and allowed just one hit and struck out one. P-T's first loss of the season came last Monday at Cushing when the Tigers gained a 9-2 triumph. The Demons' lone runs came in the first inning with two outs. Longbrake seven runs in the Demons. Longbrake was the losing pitcher giving up five runs on seven hits and one walk. He did strike out four. Kingfisher 10, P-T 1 KJH 201 25-10 17 0 P-T 000 10- 1 2 0 Smith and Hokins. Zeke Dougan, Reed Aldridge (5 ) and Bryce Wells. W - Smith. L - Dougan. P-T 18, Frontier 0 FJH 000 - 0 3 0 P-T (11)7x-18 14 0 Brady Davis, Brady Dougan (3 ra) and Bryce Well. W - Davis. Cushing 9, P-T 2 P-T 200 00-2 4 4 CMS 104 4x-9 10 0 Dillon Longbrake, Reed Aldridge (4t"), Zeke Dougan (4 th) and Bryce Wells. Patter- walked and later scored son and Kelly. W- Patterso0. while Zane Long singled L- Longbrake. GENERAC" Stand up to unpredictable weather or unforeseen outages. If the power goes out the generator goes on. It's that simple. It doesn't sleep. It doesn't call in sick or make excuses. It's made by the company that has been building generators for over 50 years and it's at the top of its class. 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