SPOKANE — There’s a lot to like about the way Pateros opened its state run Thursday.
It didn’t just pick up a vital win to advance to the semifinals, it buried Yakama Nation 64-36 with alarmingly efficient 3-point shooting — 38 percent beyond the arc — and leapt out to an almost insurmountable 22-7 lead after the first quarter.
Sophomore Katrina Wilson sunk the first shot of the game, a 3-pointer, and the Nannies followed the wing’s lead by scoring at a torrid pace.
Vanessa Figueroa chipped in a couple of treys and senior post Kim Vasquez was active inside, lifting the team to a 10-0 run to start the contest.
Now comes the next challenge — a semifinal matchup against the Sunnyside Christian Knights at 3:45 p.m. Friday in Spokane, who spent much of the season ranked No. 2 in the state.
“They have two girls that like to drive and go to the hole and do that well,” coach Sheri Mortimer said. “Obviously, we’ve got to stop that.”
While Sunnyside Christian’s inside presence could present problems, Pateros is brimming with confidence, and for good reason.
The Nannies didn’t show any sign of being nervous on Thursday and believe that their tendency to run opponents ragged late in games gives them an advantage.
Pateros rested its starters in the fourth quarter of Thursday’s win, meanwhile the Knights were outscored 22-18 in the second half.
“I think we’ll be more rested than Sunnyside Christian, and we saw that they got tired in the fourth quarter,” Mortimer said.
The Nannies will need to carry their proficient shooting into Friday and plan on a big second half. Defensively, they will need to find a way to contain Sunnyside Christian’s post offense.
“Our game plan is going to be to make them beat us from the outside,” Mortimer said.