YAKIMA — Friday night, for the first time this season, the Panthers took on the West Valley Rams.
Wenatchee lost to West Valley the two times they met last season, but Wenatchee has been on a roll with a four-game winning streak, and with comparable records so far this season, the Panthers were primed for an upset. But the Rams were ready and kept their streak alive, winning 67-46.
“We struggled to score,” said Wenatchee Girls Head Coach Pat Loftus. “We didn’t shoot the ball well enough. Our defense was okay, not great.”
From the start, West Valley had the Panther’s number, almost doubling Wenatchee’s offensive production in the first half to stretch the lead 37-21.
“West Valley was able to incrementally increase the lead little by little,” said Loftus. “They executed well against our zone, attacking the center and corners of our defense, finding the holes. And when we were in man-to-man they attacked well.”
The second half was much more competitive for the Panthers. They nearly matched every West Valley bucket but with the hole already so deep, it wasn’t enough, especially when you consider around 20 of the Ram’s points were from free-throws.
Kristina Blauman led the Panthers with 16 points and Kristen Sanford added 9 points. West Valley’s Gillyan Landis had 18 points and Ariel Winslow added 14.
Wenatchee is 2-3 in league and 4-9 overall. West Valley is 3-2 in league and 6-7 overall. Wenatchee plays Moses Lake at home on Saturday, Jan. 18 at 5:45 p.m.
Bulldogs befuddle the Goats with a 55-point blowout
CASHMERE — The Bulldogs and Mountain Goats, for the second time this season, squared off. Only two weeks ago these teams faced each other when Cashmere ran away with a 40 point victory. And as things proved Friday night, even the Bulldogs showed they can improve when they left with yet another blowout victory 69-14.
“We had a great start,” said Cashmere Girls Head Coach Brent Darnell. “We had a great week of practice. They were ready to play. Hailey (Van Lith) was great on both sides of the ball and our team defense was very good. Our subs didn’t miss a beat, playing smart and physical.”
From tipoff, the Bulldogs eager and ready to play. They scored 42 points this quarter alone and held Chelan to 4.
“It was an ugly game for us,” said Chelan Girls Head Coach Rob Huddleston. “Our girls didn’t show up, they were intimidated from tip-off. What Darnell has them doing on defense is special. It’s something that everyone has to buy into and they get after it.”
The Goats improved in the second half, scoring 10 of their 14 points, but the Cashmere defensive machine just kept rolling until finally ending the night with a 55-point lead.
Hailey Van Lith led the Bulldogs with 39 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists, and 6 steals.
The two Graces also had a great night.
Grace Hammond contributed 15 points and 3 steals and Grace Erdmann had 9 points with 10 rebounds. Chelan’s Katie Rainville had 6 points on the night.
Cashmere remains undefeated at 6-0 in league and 13-0 overall. Chelan is 2-5 in league and 6-7 overall. Cashmere plays Cascade on Tuesday, Jan. 21 in Leavenworth at 5:45 p.m.
Pioneers pile on the points over the Kodiaks
LEAVENWORTH — One month ago the Omak Pioneers finished with a 22-point victory over the Cascade Kodiaks. The second time around, Friday night, with Cascade down their leading scorer Kascia Muscutt due to ankle injury, they more than doubled that deficit to take another victory 57-11.
“We gave up too many second-chance points on rebounds,” said Cascade Girls Head Coach Dane Lewman. “We didn’t find the open shooter on offense but if we did they didn’t take the shot. We got most of our points by breaking the press and finishing lay-ins.”
Omak scored double digits every quarter but the last and held Cascade to five points or less every quarter but the last when they were held scoreless.
Jocellyn Rodriguez, Emma Halseth, and Amber West led Cascade with 3 points apiece. Omak’s Aaliyah Marchand finished with 13 points.
Cascade is 0-7 in league and 1-13 overall. Omak is 5-2 in league and 10-5 overall. Cascade plays Cashmere at home on Tuesday, Jan. 21 at 5:45 p.m.
EAST WENATCHEE — For the first time this season, Eastmont faced the Sunnyside Grizzlies. The Wildcats are on a four-game winning streak and after beating the Grizzlies twice last season they fully expected to make it five by the end of Friday night. Which they did. After building an eight-point lead in the first quarter the Wildcats were able to hold on throughout the night to finish 74-66.
“We got off to a 10 plus lead,” said Eastmont Boys Head Coach George Juarez. “Whenever we stretched the lead to 15 or 16 Sunnyside would bring it back down to 9 or 10.”
The first quarter was critical for the Wildcats. They built an eight-point lead at 18-10 by the end of the quarter and this sustained them to the second quarter where they only outscored the Grizzlies by three points to finish 38-27.
After the half, both sides canceled each other out scoring 19 apiece. And like the second quarter, one side outscored the other by three only this time the Grizzlies came out on top. But that lead from the first quarter carried through to the end for the Wildcats.
“I would have like to be more intense,” said Juarez. “But we maintained the lead throughout the night. We were in control. If Sunnyside made a run we would respond.”
Isaac Welborn led Eastmont with 27 points and Evan Smith added 21. Sunnyside’s Ethan Copeland had 25 points and Daniel Singleterry added 18.
Eastmont is 5-1 in league and 9-4 overall. Sunnyside is 2-3 in league and 4-9 overall. Eastmont plays Kennewick at home on Saturday, Jan. 18 at 7:30 p.m.
Wenatchee routed by the Rams
YAKIMA — Wenatchee took on the West Valley Rams Friday night, for the first time this season. The Rams are currently at the top of the Big 9 and they showed the Panthers why when they stretched their lead to 23-points, finishing the night 64-41 to remain undefeated in league.
“We came out and competed well,” said Wenatchee Boys Head Coach Travis Williams. “We shot the ball well.”
The first quarter was a close contest between the two teams until West Valley’s 7-foot big-man, Conner Turner, decided to step back behind the arc and sink a three-pointer before the buzzer to stretch their lead 17-12. The second quarter was a near stalemate the Rams only growing the lead before halftime by two points 29-22.
“We had a really good first half,” said Williams. “Their 7-foot kid hit some tough shots. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him square up for a three, so when he hit that shot it was a little deflating.”
Unfortunately, the trend continued for the Panthers in the second half and the deficit grew before the Rams finally took the win.
“West Valley played really well tonight,” said Williams. “They have a lot of size. They eliminated most of our second chances by rebounding the ball well.”
Wenatchee is 2-3 in league and 6-7 overall. West Valley is 5-0 in league and 11-2 overall. Wenatchee plays Moses Lake at home on Saturday, Jan. 18 at 7:30 p.m.
Goats gotten by the Bulldogs
CHELAN — Only two weeks ago Cashmere ran away with a 21-point win over Chelan. Friday night, for the second time this season, these teams faced each other. Though the Bulldogs would ultimately remain undefeated, the game was a bit more competitive before ending the night 68-51.
The first quarter was an even battle until Chelan edged out one extra point before the end of the quarter 20-19. Chelan’s Connor Wilson hit 10 of his 13 points in the first quarter and Nate Harding hit 7 of his 9 also. But the Bulldogs took over in the second quarter, holding the Goats to just four points while they hit 20, ending the half 39-24.
“We challenged the boys to play better defense after that first quarter,” said Cashmere Boys Head Coach Levi Heyen. “And they played great defense from that point on. Our offense was steady all game. We had four in double figures. They did a good job of shutting down Nate (Phillips) but he was able to create open looks for his teammates.”
That trend spilled over into the third quarter but Chelan was able to reduce the deficit in the final quarter after Cashmere put in their bench players.
Sam Phillips lead Cashmere with 15 points and Brooks Elliott added 14. Carter Alberts and Reid Smith each finished with 10. Chelan’s Connor Wilson had 13 points, Reed Stamps had 11, and Nate Harding added 9.
“I was pleased with the way came out playing in the first quarter,” said Chelan Boys Head Coach Jeff Pearl. “They had lots of energy and intensity in a tough, road environment. Our second quarter killed us. That proved to be the difference in the game, really. Cashmere got a big lift tonight from a lot of their role players. Guys you don’t typically expect to put up a lot of points hit some big shots for them. No excuses, we just need to play better when we see them again on Friday.”
Cashmere is still undefeated in league at 6-0 and 9-3 overall. Chelan is 2-5 in league and 7-6 overall. Cashmere plays Cascade in Leavenworth on Tuesday, Jan. 21 at 7:15 p.m. Chelan plays La Salle on Saturday, Jan. 18 at 7:30 p.m. in Yakima.
Kodiaks drenched by Pioneers from deep
LEAVENWORTH — Cascade, still in search of their first league win, faced Omak Friday night for the second time this season. On their last outing, the Pioneers shot the ball well to take the win and things weren’t too different this time around when they hit 12 three’s, equaling 36 points, to take another win over the Kodiaks 63-30.
“We started out guns blazing,” said Cascade Boys Head Coach Paul Fraker. “But they followed with a run, hitting a lot of uncontested three’s and our defense didn’t answer.”
The Kodiaks came out hot, going on an early 7-0 run but between the first and second quarter, the Pioneers went on a 19-2 run, largely fueled by the offensive output of Reilly Davis who hit six of the team’s 12 three-pointers, earning 18 of his 20 points from deep. Cascade went into halftime down 34-19.
“Omak’s pressure defense gave us problems,” said Fraker. “We didn’t show up after that initial run.”
The second quarter was more evenly matched but the Pioneers went right back to work in the final quarter to stretch the lead and take the win.
Isaac Cortes led Cascade with 10 points and Cole Warnaca added 7. Omak’s Reilly Davis finished with 20 points and Tre Marchand added 13.
Cascade is 0-7 in league and 4-10 overall. Omak is 4-3 in league and 12-3 overall. Cascade plays Cashmere at home on Tuesday, Jan. 21 at 7:15 p.m.
Rand Stevens: 509-665-1167