Class 5A, third-ranked Tahlequah won its third consecutive game and fourth over a ranked opponent Thursday, defeating No. 14 Guthrie, 44-40, on the opening day of the Skiatook Invitational Tournament.

Junior Tatum Havens scored a team-high 16 points, and both Faith Springwater and Lily Couch added nine points to pace the Lady Tigers, who improve to 6-1 under head coach David Qualls.

"This was a game we had to gut out," Qualls said. "We didn't play particularly well tonight, but we gave great effort in the second half. Give Guthrie credit, they have some nice players."

Havens buried three 3-pointers and scored 11 of her points during the third quarter. She helped Tahlequah overcome a 23-17 halftime deficit and get even at 34-34 going into the final eight minutes.

The Lady Tigers limited Guthrie to two field goals in the fourth quarter, while Couch and Springwater connected on 3s, and Kori Rainwater and Havens each added a field goal.

Tahlequah will take on Muskogee for a second time this season at 4 p.m. Friday. The Lady Tigers defeated the Lady Roughers, 61-48, on Dec. 12 in the Tahlequah Invitational.

Slow start dooms Tigers: Tulsa Webster outscored Tahlequah 20-5 over the first eight minutes and cruised to a 61-45 win Thursday at the Skiatook Invitational.

The No. 12 Tigers were led by sophomore forward Hayden Smith's 16 points, while Walker Scott contributed with 10 points. Senior Qua'shon Leathers closed with nine points.

Tahlequah, who will face Muskogee at 2:30 p.m. Friday, fall to 3-4 under head coach Marcus Klingsick.

Webster received a game-high 17 points from Isaiah Sanders, while Anthony Pritchard followed with 16.

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