By CEDRIQUE FLEMMING
WAGONER — The Keys girls basketball team defeated Wagoner 53-40 Tuesday night at Hughes Event Center.
Mylee Hewitt led the Lady Cougars with 20 points and six steals in 32 minutes. Sydni Rainbolt battled foul trouble but was able to add 12 points and six steals off the bench for the Lady Cougars.
“I always tell Mylee that we want her shooting if she’s open,” Keys coach Mickey Duncan said. “She wasn’t hitting them like she usually does tonight, but I want her to be able to figure out how doing other things like getting to the free-throw line can really help your shooting. Once she figures that out, she is going to become a complete player.”
Keys shot 42 percent (19 of 45) from the field and knocked down 5 of 22 (23 percent) from behind the three-point line. Wagoner also shot 42 percent (14 of 33) from the field and made 4 of 7 from downtown.
The Lady Cougars were able to force 23 Wagoner turnovers to just 11 from the visitors. Keys also had 17 steals to just six from the Bulldogs.
Keys held a slim 15-11 lead after the first quarter, but an 11-4 second gave the road team a 26-15 lead at intermission.
Wagoner gave the visitors a quick scare by scoring the first seven points of the second half to get within four, but Keys closed out the third quarter on a 10-4 run to push the lead back out to 10 and never looked back. The Lady Cougars stretched their lead to 16 points in the fourth and held on for the 13-point victory.
“We got the looks we wanted from the three-point line in the first half, but we just didn’t shoot the ball very well,” Duncan said. “We concentrated a little more on our defense after (Wagoner’s) run in the second half, and we were able to get some layups. That gave us some energy and led to us knocking down more three’s.”
Kristen Robbins led Wagoner with 14 points. Kelsi Emmons added nine points but turned the ball over 10 times.
Keys 67, Wagoner 60 (boys)
Payton Ragsdale and Trevor Eubanks combined for 45 points to lead the Keys boys basketball team to a 67-60 victory over Wagoner.
Rasgdale was 10 of 15 from the field and recorded a double-double with 23 points and 11 rebounds. Eubanks added 22 points (11 from the free-throw line) and eight assists in a game-high 31 minutes.
“Those two make a really good inside-outside combination,” Keys coach Duane Jones said. “(Wagoner) tried to take Trevor away early, and Payton and Mason (Turman) were able to have some success inside. Once they started keying on our big guys, Trevor was able to take the game over.”
Keys never trailed in the contest and led by as many as 16. The visitors took a 37-22 lead into halftime and looked to be in control, but Wagoner would not go quietly. The Bulldogs chipped the lead down to 45-40 with 3:40 to play in the third, but five-straight Keys points squashed that charge.
Wagoner continued to fight and got back within six at 56-50 with 5:39 to play in the game, but the Cougars once again staved off the comeback attempt and held on for the seven-point road triumph.
“We got up big early, and we knew they were going to come back,” Jones said. “We lost our intensity for a few minutes, but we were able to turn it back on when we needed it. I’m real proud of them for hanging in there.”
Keys received welcomed contributions from its other three starters, as Turman, Cody Cole and Tyler Blankenship combined for 21 points. The Cougars only had one bench point in the contest.
“We’ve been working in practice on getting those guys more involved,” Jones said. “They don’t have to score big, but they are all scoring threats and hopefully tonight was a step in the right direction to get them going.”
Byron Adams led Wagoner with 22 points.