Staying alive

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Cushing girls pop Berryhill, reach region final

By Jim Perry

Managing Editor

They came. They saw. They kicked some booty.
The Cushing Lady Tigers, playing in perhaps the most difficult game of the high school basketball playoffs, took out rival Berryhill 42-23 Friday afternoon in the Class 4A regional tournament at Tiger Fieldhouse.
The victory advanced Cushing to Saturday afternoon’s regional consolation final — and within one victory of a berth in the Stillwater Area Tournament — against either Cleveland or Victory Christian School. It lifted CHS to 17-9 for the season.
Cushing beat Berryhill, its mate in the Tulsa 7 Conference, for the third time in as many meetings this year. The Lady Tigers won after a brief break following their painful loss Thursday night to Tulsa Will Rogers.
“It was not an easy game,” Cushing coach Brian Busby said. “We were coming off an emotionally draining game the night before and trying to beat them for the third time.
“That is not an easy task.”
Cushing, after a slow start, made it look that way.
The teams staggered to a 10-point first quarter — CHS led 8-2 — and were still struggling when Cushing got untracked in the second quarter. A 3-point shot by Braelyn Berlowitz touched off a 14-0 Tiger run. Cushing led 25-6 at halftime.
The margin never got dangerous in the second half although Cushing, in a bit of a hurry, lost nine turnovers and scored only 17 points. A 6-0 CHS blitz in the middle of the fourth quarter all but put the game out of reach.
Berlowitz scored a game-high 10 points for CHS. Karlea Jones and Kayla Vasquez had nine points each.
Berryhill got a team-high eight points from Kennedy Zimmerman. The Maidens, who finished the season at 11-13, never led in the game.

Cush 42, B’hill 23
Berryhill 2 4 8 9 — 23
Cushing 8 17 6 11 — 42
Berryhill (11-13) — Brightwell 7, Fugate 4, Zimmerman 8, Labarge 2, McAdams 2.
Cushing (17-9) — Stump 2, Hightower 2, Ailey 4, Jones 9, Berlowitz 10, Leverich 2, Vasquez 9, Hunt 4.