DODGE CITY —The Dodge City High School girls’ basketball team fell to Hays High 50-47 in overtime Friday night.
It was a night full of turnovers for the Demons, and the Indians capitalized — outscoring Dodge City 22-5 off them.
The Demons took an early lead at 3-0, and led 16-13 at the end of the first quarter, but Hays High battled back, forcing the Demons into 12 first-half turnovers and recording 16 points off them while taking a 24-20 lead into halftime.
“We had some turnovers. We didn’t make our free throws. A lot of things could have gone different to where we could have sealed it,” Dodge City coach Kelley Snodgrass said. “But then they would come back and hit a big 3. But the girls continued to chip away and fight and push it into overtime, and I thought we had the momentum going into there.”
In the third quarter, Dodge City got back into the game with an 11-2 run on the way to outscoring Hays 14-7 in the quarter to take a 34-31 lead into the fourth.
Junior Payton Magouirk had the last five points of the third, tying the game then giving the Demons the lead to end the quarter.
She had eight points Friday night on 3-of-3 shooting, including 2-of-2 from deep.
“(Magouirk’s performance) was great, and I talked to the girls,” Snodgrass said. “We’ve gotta get the ball to the hot-hand. She came in, hit two big shots for us and then we didn’t go back at her. Payton is a force inside, and I felt like we didn’t utilize her. When somebody’s having a good game, we really need to get the ball in their hands.”
Hays High tied the game at 36-36 with 5:34 left in the fourth before taking the lead with 38-36 with just less than three minutes left. The Indians then hit a 3-pointer before committing a travel to turn the ball over on their next offensive possession.
With less than three minutes left in regulation, Hays High took a 43-36 lead. Dodge City took a timeout with 1:15 left, then scored to make the score 43-38 with 53.1 seconds left.
On the next drive, sophomore Chidera Okoro drove to the basket and scored to make the score 43-40 in favor of Hays High, at which point the Indians took a timeout with 15.7 seconds.
Unruh had an otherwise rough night, but with 15.7 seconds left, she got the ball, put a quick move on her defender at the 3-point line and fired a shot that hit high off the backboard and tied the game at 43-43 with five seconds left.
Hays ended up winning the game in overtime, but one of the resounding strengths for the Demons all night was Okoro.
She had a double-double with a team-high 15 points and a game-high 13 rebounds.
“I can’t say enough about Chidera Okoro,” Snodgrass said. “She’s playing really good basketball at both ends. It’s not just offensively and rebounding, she has to lock down their best offensive player. She has to guard their best player and she just leaves it all out on the court, so she’s doing great right now.”
Hays High improved to 10-5 overall and 4-0 in the conference.
Hays High boys 83, Dodge City 63
The Indians scored early and often, making six 3s in the first quarter and seven points off three Demon turnovers. They took a 30-12 lead into the second quarter.
In the second quarter, the Indians expanded their lead to 48-24 to end the first half. Overall, they shot 46.9 percent, which included hitting 12 3-pointers.
Dodge City shot 29.7 percent in the loss, committing three fewer turnovers than Hays, but only managing eight points off them. Hays High also shot 11 of 12 from the free-throw line.
Senior Cole Murphy had a game-high 27 points for the Indians, and senior Ethan Nunnery had a double-double with 22 points and 10 rebounds.
Senior Hunter Heath led the way for the Red Demons with a double-double of his own on 17 points and 11 rebounds.
The Indians head to Liberal on Friday and are a 10-5 overall and a perfect 4-0 in the Western Athletic Conference.