Central Plains 46, Oakley 35

By Paul Harris

Pressure defense and clutch play by Central Plains’ Sydney Rugan — who led all players with 21 points — pushed the fourth-seeded Oilers into the second round with a 46-35 win.

Oakley closed the gap to three points at 35-32, but the Plainsmen were unable to get any closer. Oakley had trouble connecting from deep and finished the game 3-for-16 from behind the arc. Central Plains forced the Plainsmen into 27 turnovers behind a three-quarters-court press.

Laura Dennis scored 11 points to lead the Plainsmen, while pulling down nine rebounds. Three more players scored six points apiece. No other players scored in double figures for the Oilers, but Jennifer Hitschman finished with a team-high eight.

Central Plains will face the top-ranked and undefeated Olpe Eagles on Friday at 3 p.m.

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