Tahlequah Daily Press

January 10, 2014

Indians get another crack at Jenks

By BEN JOHNSON
Sports Editor

bjohnson@tahlequahdailypress.com



Checotah posed little threat to Jenks on Monday night. The Trojans boat-raced the Wildcats right out of Milam Gymnasium at Muskogee High School by a final score of 70-39.

The Class 6A No. 14 Trojans did so without the likes of Cameron Booty and Steven Parker — both members of Jenks’ state-championship football team in 2013.

That won’t be the case against Class 3A No. 5 Sequoyah tonight at the Muskogee Civic Center.

“They should have their football guys for the game,” Sequoyah coach Jay Herrin said of the 6 p.m. semifinal matchup in the Bedouin Shrine Classic. “It will be tough to handle their speed and athleticism.”

It’ll be the second year in a row that Sequoyah gets its chance to knock off the likes of Jenks at the Shrine Classic. In 2013, Sequoyah hung around against Jenks through three quarters but ultimately lost 67-55.

Same teams and same setting — just one year later.

“We have a game plan for them,” said Herrin, whose team is 7-1 after blowing out McAlester, 65-43, in the first round of the tournament.

“They’re a little different than last year.”

Sophomore TJ Washington leads the charge for the Trojans (2-2). Against Checotah, the 5-foot-9 guard logged 19 points.

“They are very guard-oriented,” Herrin said of Jenks. “They have a lot of speed and they shoot the ball well.”

Since falling to 4A No. 7 Fort Gibson at the Inola tournament, Sequoyah has rattled off five straight victories, including two wins over McAlester. And while the Indians return the likes of Caisen Green, B.J. Leach, Quinton Johnston and Zach Parish from last year’s squad, Herrin said his club this year features different characteristics.

“[Like Jenks], we’re a different team, also,” Herrin said. “We’re playing more man (defense).”

Speaking of defense, Herrin said his club will have to overcome Jenks’ tenacious defense and ball pressure.

“They have a real good full-court press,” Herrin said, “and their traps are really good. We have to do our best to stay out of those.”

Sequoyah could also be down a man going against Jenks. After suffering an ankle injury earlier this season, Leach reaggravated the same injury against McAlester this week. Herrin said Leach’s status against Jenks was unknown.

“We don’t know if he’ll be back (this week),” Herrin said. “His ankle was pretty swollen (on Wednesday).”

As for other action in the Shrine Classic tonight, the Sequoyah girls will take on Haskell at 7:30 at Muskogee High School. In a nightcap, the Hulbert boys will attempt to knock off 3A No. 4 Spiro at the Muskogee Civic Center.