Sapulpa remembers basketball standout Mark Tucker

Sapulpa remembers basketball standout Mark Tucker
Posted on 10/20/2021
(SPS) -- Not long after longtime Sapulpa head coach Ray Reins passed away, his standout player, Mark Tucker, lost a battle with COVID-19.

Tucker died Saturday at the age of 65 in Waxahachie, Texas.

Along with charismatic head coach Ray Reins, Tucker led the 1973 and 1974 Chieftains to  state 3A basketball tournaments, and was known for his outstanding performance.

The Chieftains were the state runners-up in 1973 and made it to semi-finals in 1974.

Tucker admired "Pistol" Pete Maravich, modeling his skills and showmanship on the court after the legendary NBA star. Tucker, an All-State player, averaged 24.3 points per game during his last season at Sapulpa, according to the Tulsa World. 

Tulsa World: Sapulpa's ball-handling wizard, Mark Tucker, dies at 65

Tucker played at the University of Tulsa and Oklahoma State and was drafted by the the Chicago Bulls in 1979. He decided that coaching was his calling and coached at OKC Southeast and Union, as well as high schools in Kentucky and Fort Worth. He coached at Sapulpa from 2001 to 2003.

Tucker's family says his faith and family were the most important things in his life, followed by basketball.

Donia Doudican, Sapulpa's Executive Director of Teaching and Learning, was a close friend of Tucker and his wife of 43 years, Sandra.

"When you think of people who define the Sapulpa community, Mark Tucker is one of those people," said Doudican, reminiscing on his positive attitude and kindness.

Mark Tucker was 65 years old. He is survived by his wife, two daughters, two sons and five granddaughters he called the "Starting Five."

His funeral will be held Saturday, Oct. 23 at Smith Funeral Home Chapel in Sapulpa.
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