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Eagles and Lady Eagles lock in postseason seeding

Despite 40 points from junior Addy Clift, the Oklahoma Christian University women’s basketball team fell 95-83 to the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith Feb. 22.

Clift went 9-of-23 from the field, 5-of-11 from 3-point range, and 17-of-18 from the free-throw line as she finished her sixth game with 20 or more points in the last seven contests.

Freshman Katie Mayo put up 16 points and 10 boards while senior Audrey Hayes added eight points and 10 rebounds.

The Lady Eagles led 25-22 going into the second quarter but only scored nine points before halftime as the Lions pulled ahead 45-34.

Oklahoma Christian was outscored 42-6 by the Fort Smith bench unit and allowed 27 points off 19 turnovers.

In the third quarter, the Lady Eagles brought the game within two points, 65-63, on a three-pointer from Clift and stayed within a single possession up until the 8:24 mark in the fourth quarter when the Lions went on an 11-0 run to seal the victory .

In their final game of regular season, the Lady Eagles held off a fourth-quarter push from Rogers State University to win 74-68 Feb. 24.

Clift had her seventh game with more than 20 points in eight contests. She finished with 28 points on 7-of-15 shooting.

Mayo added 13 points and five rebounds, freshman Maddison Collyer put up 13 points and junior Carolyne Lawley scored 11 points.

Oklahoma Christian led for nearly the entire game, taking a 23-20 lead at the end of the first quarter and maintained a three-point lead 29-26 heading into halftime.

The Lady Eagles held a 64-58 advantage with 3:53 remaining in the game, and in the final minute, Collyer made one free throw and Clift made both of her free throws to win the game for the Lady Eagles with 11 seconds left.

With their win against Rogers State, Oklahoma Christian locked themselves into the fifth seed for the upcoming Heartland Conference Tournament.

Clift was named the Heartland Conference Player of the Week for the fifth time this season and Eagle of the Week for the fourth time this season. Clift finished as the regular season Heartland Conference scoring champion at 21.2 points per game. She ranks 11th in NCAA Division II for scoring per game.

For the men’s team, they were outscored by 13 points in the second half as Fort Smith defeated the Eagles 86-73 Feb. 22.

Both senior Elijah Strickland and junior Jordan Box scored 16 points to lead the team, and junior Roderick Smith added 11 points and 12 rebounds.

The Eagles went into halftime tied with the Lions 39-39 and lost despite shooting 40.9 percent from three-point range and 41 percent from the field.

In their final regular season game, Oklahoma Christian fell 80-75 to Rogers State in a battle for playoff seeding.

Strickland led the team with 19 points on 6-of-8 from the field and went 5-for-5 from behind the three-point arc. He moved into 25th on the Oklahoma Christian all-time scoring list with 1,342 points.

Box, Smith and senior Abel Rodriguez all scored 11 points. Smith also recroded 11 rebounds.

The Eagles shot 51.8 percent from the field, 53.8 percent from three-point range and a perfect 100 percent on 10 shots from the free-throw line.

Oklahoma Christian led 40-35 at halftime and pushed that lead to 45-35 in the first two minutes of the second half before the Hillcats went on a 9-0 run.

Box hit a three to even the game 65-65 with 4:51 remaining, but Rogers State broke away with an 11-4 run to pull away and win the game, 76-69.

The loss dropped the Eagles into seventh place in the Heartland Conference seeding for the playoffs.

The seventh-seeded men’s team will have a rematch with second-seeded Arkansas-Fort Smith in the first round of the Heartland Conference tournament Mar. 1 at 12 p.m. The fifth-seeded Lady Eagles will play fourth-seeded Newman University Mar. 2 at 2:30 p.m. Both games will be played at Union Multipurpose Activity Center in Tulsa, OK.

The previous week’s results can be found here.r

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