All-State BB Game capped Howe hoopster's prep career

TULSA — Megan Brown’s time of playing basketball goes way back.She’s been involved, “ever since I could dribble the ball,” she said. “About when I was 3 or 4.”But Wednesday night marked the last time the Howe High School graduate played an official game on the hardwood, as she played for the East in the All-State Small School Girls Basketball Game at the Oral Roberts University Mabee Center. She got to start and scored just six points. But they were big, consisting of a pair of 3-point baskets. She also made her share of contributions in blocking.The East led just 35-33 at halftime but broke the game open in the second half.Brown’s first 3-pointer came from the left wing with 5:52 remaining in the third quarter. It upped the East advantage to 43-35.Her second came with 5:40 left in the game, making the score 68-53 as the East rolled to a 83-64 victory.“In an All-State Game, everybody is good,” Brown said. “There are not players out there just to fill the holes. I felt really good about contributing to the team.“I’ve never experienced anything like it (All-State),” she said. “These girls got it really fast.”Some players are bound for college on a scholarship after high school. Some seek a place to walk-on, and then there are those who decide to and move on from their sport. For Brown, she is going with the latter.“I think there is always going to be a little bit of regret because it’s (basketball) been a part of my life for so long,” said Brown, who played in the Oklahoma Girls Basketball Coaches Association All-State Game last month at Southwestern Oklahoma State University in Weatherford. “But for the most part, I’m just glad to be going to college and getting my mind on my education.”The Lady Lion graduate plans on going to Carl Albert State College for one year, then transfer to the University of Oklahoma, seeking a career in physical therapy.One thing she will always remember from her All-State experience is making friends with former foes.“There are only two girls that I played with (for the East) that I played against,” Brown said.Those girls were Pete Douglass of Oktaha and Charitee Evans of Red Oak.“During a high school game, you kind of hate them because you are trying to beat them,“ Brown said. “But as I met them, I really liked them. I think I made friends to last a lifetime.“Playing against them, they were hard to guard, but I like playing with them because they are nice passers.”Brown, who was coached by her father, Chris, in high school, also got to have him by her side in pre-game introductions.“It was kind of bittersweet because this is my last game, and he was my coach my whole life, so I’m glad he got to be part of this.”In the game, Kelsey Barnwell of Kansas led the East with 16 points. She was followed by the 14-point effort of Brooke Watkins of Prague. Salina’s Courtney Backward had 11 and Courtney Cowan, another Kansas player, logged 10.Lacey Paulk of Washington led the West with 14 points and Jordan Van Pelt of Snyder scored 13.