WODEN, Tx -- Defense may win championships, but teams have to score to win - plain and simple.
The Timpson Lady Bears entered the postseason for the first time in seven years, but hit a cold spell for nearly two quarters here in Ford King, Jr. Gymnasium Tuesday night and the result was an 18-0 Cushing run as the Galkats eliminated the Lady Bears from the playoffs, 36-21, in a Class 1A D-I bi-district matchup.
It was a disappointing end to a great run down the stretch for Keith Prather and his Lady Bears, who won five of their last seven - including a play-in victory over Garrison Saturday - to earn the playoff berth. Timpson finished the season with a 10-15 record.
But after taking their only lead of the game, 5-4, with 4:20 left in the opening stanza, the Lady Bears wouldn't score again until the 4:52 mark of the third quarter. By that time the Galkats (21-8) had taken a 22-5 lead and the 15:28 drought did Timpson in.
"We just couldn't hit anything we shot up, and that's the bottom line. We had shot after shot after shot and couldn't get anything to fall.
"And after the shots weren't falling, the girls started pressing themselves to try to get the shots to fall and that's when frustration set in. And when that happened we struggled with rebounds, fouls and turnovers."
Not a good combination for a team lacking playoff experience.
As a result, no Timpson players were able to reach double-figure scoring in the contest. Jakelia Caraway, the Lady Bears' leading scorer on the year, finished the night with eight points, scoring just two points in the first two periods as Cushing moved out to an 18-5 lead.
Tammi Harris added seven points to the Lady Bears' cause, with LaToya Cartwright pitching in three, Rachel Reeves being held to two and Caitlyn Smith scored one point.
"Rachel usually gets two or three three-pointers and she couldn't get any of them to fall. Then Jakelia started feeling the 'weight of the world' on her shoulders and it was too much."
Sam Bensley paced the Cushing attack, scoring 11 points in the middle two periods and finishing as the game's high scorer with 17 points. Mackenzie Tucker dumped in seven points, Amanda Murdock scored five and Krystal Barrett added four points. Christina Carpenter scored two and Danielle Crawford finished with one point.
Caraway scored on a breakaway layup and Harris converted a Cushing turnover into a layup and was fouled, then made the free throw for a 5-4 Timpson lead.
By the end of the period the Galkats had fought back to an 8-5 lead, and had forced six Timpson turnovers in the first period.
Prather tried to do anything he could to break the Cushing momentum in the second quarter, calling a pair of timeouts and even pressing the Galkats. But Cushing finished the quarter by outscoring Timpson 10-0 to lead by 13 at the break.
After Harris missed a pair of field goals 35 seconds into the third quarter, Timpson finally got a free throw to fall when Reeves hit 2-of-3 free throws when she was fouled while shooting a trey. Caraway then stole the ball and went coast-to-coast for a layup for the first field goal in 15:39.
Surprisingly, Timpson looked as if it had gained some momentum as Harris scored on a layup with 4:14 left in the third and Timpson was within 22-11 with plenty of time left. By the end of the third Cushing used a 5-0 run to post a 29-14 lead.
"We had a little chance near the end of the third quarter," Prather said. "But we still couldn't score with any consistency. Then the frustration continued to set in and Cushing took advantage of it."
Bensley hit a baseline jumper for Cushing with 6:46 on the clock in the fourth as the Galkat lead grew to 17, 31-14.
Timpson scored seven points in the fourth quarter, while holding Cushing to seven, but the Lady Bears were out of sync and never got on track.
Cushing will now meet District 24-1A champion Zavalla in the Area round of the playoffs. The Eagles received a bye in the opening round.
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