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Class 3A boys basketball roundup

YUKON — The Class 3A boys state basketball tournament began Thursday at Yukon High School. Here’s what happened:

<@Bold>Crossings Christian 64, Westville 55<@$p>

Crossings Christian senior Cooper Gudell had gone silent after a whirlwind first half in which he scored 19 points, yet he made his only points of the second half count.

Gudell stepped to the free throw line with 1:25 to play and his team clinging to a 58-53 lead. The 6-foot-3 guard hit both free throws of a one-and-one opportunity and No. 1 Crossings closed the door on unranked and upset-minded Westville.

“We just made a few more plays,” said Crossings coach Shawn Schenk, whose team led by as many as 18. “Those kids from Westville played hard. I think that’s kinda what we’re known for, is how hard we play, but I think we saw a team that matched us tonight. They won a lot of 50/50 balls and normally we’re the team that wins those.

“But we found a way and made enough shots.”

Gudell, who surpassed 1,000 points for his career on Thursday, ignited the fire in the first half with three 3-pointers. He finished with 21 points on the night. Reid Lovelace had 16 for Crossings, including a crucial fourth-quarter 3-pointer from 25 feet that helped slow a Westville rally.

Westville (13-11) was led by Kegan Bradford with 23 points and Caleb Sloan with 12.

Crossings Christian (24-2) will face Hugo at 8:30 p.m. Friday at State Fair Arena, which will be Crossings’ first appearance in the Big House after losing its previous three state tournament games at sub-sites.

<@Bold>Hugo 51, Marlow 31<@$p>

Second-ranked Hugo’s Devion Grant was smiling as his teammates carried him off the court following a 20-point victory in the Class 3A quarterfinals, but it wasn’t entirely a celebratory moment.

Grant, a senior starting guard, suffered an injury to his right knee late in the first half after making a pair of 3-pointers and leading Hugo’s stifling defense as it built a 24-9 lead at the half..

Grant limped back to the bench in the third quarter with a large ice pack on his knee. From there, he watched his Hugo teammates take care of business.

Marlow had a brief 10-2 run that cut Hugo’s advantage to 39-24 early in the fourth quarter, but Hugo’s seniors calmed the storm.

“A veteran team understands those things are gonna happen,” Hugo coach Darnell Shanklin said. “Our seniors have been in a lot of tough ballgames. Our schedule prepares us for this, because the majority of the time, we’re playing 4A, 5A teams that will get up and press you and harass you. So we’re not new to that.”

No. 13 Marlow (18-5) got 17 from Avery Payne and 10 from Josiah Johnson.

<@Italic>Scott Wright, Staff writer<@$p>

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