SPOKANE VALLEY — Every time the Chelan girls basketball team plays Okanogan, the game — and the result of the game — means a little bit more to the Goats.
The two squads have developed a nice rivalry over the past couple of years. That’s not entirely surprising considering the fact that the teams have played each other eight times in the past 15 months.
The Goats have a healthy respect for the Bulldogs, the defending 1A state champions. Last year, Okanogan beat Chelan four times in the five games they played each other. This season, though, things have been markedly different.
Chelan beat the Bulldogs for the third time in the past two months (and second time in eight days) with a 54-46 win Saturday in a bi-district contest at West Valley High School.
The win clinches a state regional berth for the Goats, who will play Brewster on Saturday in Omak for the bi-district championship.
“Okanogan is a good team, and for us to get them in this spot is extra special for us,” Chelan coach Frank Phelps said.
The Goats’ victory ended two exceptional nights of basketball for the Caribou Trail League’s boys and girls teams.
After going 7-1 on Friday, the CTL clinched all four state regional berths that were available on the tournament’s first weekend on Saturday.
The Brewster boys beat Lakeside to advance to Saturday’s bi-district title tilt against Okanogan, which crushed Chelan.
The Brewster girls beat Cashmere to advance to the bi-district final against the Goats.
Chelan 54, Okanogan 46
Chelan opened up a tight game in the second half and made several critical plays in the game’s waning moments to hold on for a victory.
Abby Phelps had one of the best games of her career, finishing with a season-high 26 points on 11-of-19 shooting and seven rebounds.
“She looked very athletic,” Frank Phelps said. “Tonight, they didn’t have an answer for her.”
Caitlyn Behymer scored 19 points for Okanogan.
“(This win is satisfying) because we always play the underdog role, and nobody thinks we can do it,” Abby Phelps said. “It would be a good feeling against anybody, but especially Okanogan. Our games are always close and intense. The competition creates the rivalry.”
Okanogan will play Riverside on Friday in a loser-out contest in Omak.
Brewster 60, Cashmere 42
Brewster dominated the first and fourth quarters, and that was enough for a double-digits win over a pesky Cashmere squad.
“(Clinching a state regional berth) is a good feeling for the girls, but they know there’s more to do,” said Bears coach Roger Boesel. “They don’t want to let up. It helps that they went through this last year. We haven’t talked about (last year’s run to the 2B state title game) a lot, but it is mentioned, and the girls want to finish this thing off right.”
Chandler Smith scored 30 points for the Bears, a day after tallying 11 against Riverside.
“I always come into games with the same mentality, but sometimes the shots aren’t falling, and I look to find my teammates because I know they can score,” Smith said. “When my shot is on, I keep on shooting.”
Cashmere, which received 14 points from Lauren Johnson, will play Lakeside on Friday in a loser-out game.
“We shot 15 percent in the second half and still (cut Brewster’s lead) to five a few times,” Cashmere coach Chris Cloakey said. “Give Brewster credit. They executed on defense and made shots.”
Brewster 48, Lakeside 35
A young Brewster team, down by two at halftime, pulled away from Lakeside in the second half of “a very physical game,” according to Bears coach Tim Taylor.
“The refs let us play, and we started to match (Lakeside’s) physical-ness,” he said. “We had a spurt in the second half when we started going inside to Josh Hammons.”
Cameron Jacobsen came off the bench to score 13 points for Brewster.
“He’s been waiting for his chance, and he was great tonight,” Taylor said. “He contributed all-around hustle, made shots, made free throws and played good defense.”
Okanogan 71, Chelan 46
Okanogan dominated inside in the second half to open up a close game.
Jim Townsend scored 12 of his 20 points in the third and fourth quarters, and fellow post Justin VanderWeide tallied 10 of his 12 points in the final 16 minutes.
“We played tremendous defense,” Okanogan coach Mike Carlquist said. “That led to a lot of transition baskets. That’s the way we play.”
The game featured an intriguing contrast of styles — Okanogan, led by speedy point guard Justin Rivas, likes to run, while the Goats prefer to play a slower game and win with defense.
Okanogan’s style won out on Saturday.
“The mistakes that we made in the first half were magnified in the second half,” Chelan coach Joe Harris said. “We were tentative and didn’t get back well on defense.”
The Goats will take on Cashmere in a loser-out contest Friday.
Cashmere 74, Medical Lake 45
Cashmere extended its season with one of its best performances of the year.
Cashmere went 9-of-19 from the 3-point line, out-rebounded the Cardinals 47-18 and dished out 21 assists.
“Our kids have good character and a will to win,” Cashmere coach Keith Boyd said. “Sometimes the game looks better when the ball goes in. It sound like a simple thing, but we didn’t shoot well (Friday), and we were hitting our shots today.”
Cashmere suffered a 79-72 double-overtime loss to Lakeside on Friday.
“I think (Friday’s loss) made it easier to give all that we had (Saturday),” said Jordan Christensen, who made five 3s and tallied a game-high 25 points. “We had to win this game. I didn’t want this to be the last game of my senior year, and everyone else felt the same way. It gave us the push that we needed.”
Dylan Boyd added 16 points and 11 assists for Cashmere.
Waterville 66, CBSS 21 (boys)
The Shockers pounded the ball inside for their first round district win. Jamie Abrahamse led all scorers with 22.
Entiat 60, Wilson Creek 14 (girls)
Entiat pulled away with a 23-point third quarter. Leading scorer Deserie Parks contributed 12 in the third and 22 in the game.
World sports staff contributed to this report.