OKLAHOMA CITY — Christian Heritage decided it had to tighten the screws on defense in the second half. It did, and sure enough, the results were golden — again.
The Class 2A No. 1 Crusaders allowed only six Cashion field goals in the second half, and Christian Heritage was able to pull away in the fourth quarter to cap a perfect season, one that culminated with a second straight gold ball.
“We needed to lock up our defense better,” said Christian Heritage’s Rylee Langerman, whose team finished a 30-0 season with a 57-46 victory over Cashion at State Fair Arena on Saturday. “We were kind of going through the motions, so we really worked on our unit on defense.”
Christian Heritage’s Lexie Davis led all scorers with 20 points on 5 of 12 shooting. She did most of her damage by converting on 10 of her 13 free throw attempts.
The Crusaders, who took down Dale last year in the finals for their first championship in program history, trailed second-ranked Cashion 28-21 at halftime before going 8 of 15 from the floor in the second half.
“Felt a little systematic in the first half,” Christian Heritage coach Lisa Littlejim said. “It was a little abnormal for us, so really just wanted to free them up and get (the team) back to a basic man-to-man defense.”
Myka Parrish added 13 points for the Crusaders, and Olivia Curtis (11) and Langerman (10) both scored in double figures, too.
For Cashion (28-3), Sydney Manning labored her way to 13 points and seven rebounds. She finished 4 of 13 from the field and 3 of 11 from beyond the 3-point arc.
Presley Payahsape chipped in with 11 points for the Wildcats, and Talli Robinson poured in 10 points of her own.
As for a vow to win a third straight title in 2019, Langermanreeled in the expectations — for now.
“We’re going to enjoy this one,” she said. “Then we’ll see what next season holds.”
No. 1 Christian Heritage 57, No. 2 Cashion 46
Cashion (28-3): Sydney Manning 13, Presley Payahsape 11, Talli Robinson 10, Karlie Owens 8, Lexy Maroney 2, Haley Pickle 2.
Chr. Heritage (30-0): Lexie Davis 20, Myka Parrish 13, Olivia Curtis 11, Rylee Langerman 10, Mary Kathryn Nuthman 3