GIRLS PREP BASKETBALL
Hoquiam 56, Aberdeen 22
Hoquiam’s defense smothered Aberdeen in the second half on its way to a 56-22 win over the Bobcats at Sam Benn Gym on Friday night.
Hoquiam (6-3 overall) swept both matchups in this season’s installment of the Myrtle Street Rivalry with the help of a big game from Rylee Vonhof, who was one of three Grizzlies players to reach double figures with 14 points. The senior post player also grabbed 18 rebounds and was a menace on defense with five blocks.
The Grizzlies’ defense set the tone early on, but Hoquiam couldn’t get shots to fall, allowing Aberdeen to take a 9-7 lead at the conclusion of the first quarter.
Aberdeen’s first quarter was their best offensively, with Hoquiam using a 1-3-1 zone defense, but Grizzlies head coach Denny Hinchen said some adjustments needed to be made heading into the second quarter.
“We ran that 1-3-1 trap and Aberdeen was able to get shots in the corners, so we took that time out in the second quarter and got on that run,” he said. “I knew right then and there that man defense was what we were going to finish with. Going into man was a huge key.”
Hoquiam outscored Aberdeen 14-5 in the second quarter to give the Grizzlies a 21-14 lead by halftime.
Aberdeen’s offensiveness woes continued into the second half where they only scored eight points for the rest of the game and struggled to get into offensive sets.
Bobcats head coach Rachel Wenzel said it was disappointing to see her team struggle to execute.
“My girls were going rouge a lot in the second half. They weren’t running their offense, they were making bad passes and not playing the game that we practiced for the last month,” she said.
Emmy Walsh led the Bobcats in scoring with six points.
While Aberdeen (0-5) struggled to get open looks, Hoquiam continued to cruise on offense and spread out the scoring. Kylee Bagwell scored 10 of her 14 points in the second half as she and Vonhof scored the majority of their points from the paint.
Hoquiam’s scoring output comes in spite of the absence of Maddie German, who is recovering from a knee injury she sustained against Centralia on Wednesday.
Vonhof said overcoming injuries and early struggles has the team feeling good as the leauge schedule approaches.
“We need to do better job of running the offense, but having a night like tonight is big for our confidence,” she said.
Aberdeen will get a week off before before heading to Vancouver to play in a tournament on Dec. 28-29.
The Grizzlies are also looking forward to some time off before they face the Hyaks (2-5) in North Beach on New Year’s Eve.
As North Beach is the last game on their non-league schedule, Hinchen is encouraged with how his team has progressed thus far.
“This time last year we were 2-7,” he said. “This is a new program, I didn’t expect to be 6-3, but we’ll take it. It’s quite a good turnaround.”
Elma 44, Marist 37
Elma fought off a late-game comeback attempt thanks in large part to a double-double performance from Quin Mikel in Friday’s 44-37 win over Marist at the Seaside Holiday Tournament in Seaside, Oregon.
Mikel dropped 17 points and grabbed 11 boards while Kali Rambo added another 12 points and 13 rebounds in the victory.
Elma (7-0 overall) led by as many as 15 midway through the third quarter, but Marist nailed a few 3-pointers before the end of the quarter to shrink Elma’s lead to 32-27 by the end of the frame.
The Eagles also had to deal with foul trouble as Mikel, Rambo and Jalyn Sackrider all picked up their fourth foul early in the fourth quarter.
Elma hit six of its 11 free throws and got a pair of big buckets from Sackrider to edge Marist in the final fame and secure the win.
Elma head coach Lisa Johnson gave her team credit for playing with focus down the stretch.
“We played strong and disciplined through the fourth and withstood several comeback attempts,” she said. “It was a great team win.”
The victory puts Elma in the tournament’s championship matchup at 6:45 p.m. tomorrow.
BOYS PREP BASKETBALL
Montesano 63, Cottage Grove 54
Montesano rallied from a 17-point halftime deficit to earn a 63-54 comeback victory over Cottage Grove on Friday at the Seaside Holiday Tournament in Seaside, Ore.
“It felt like we were sleepwalking. Not much was working for us,” said Bulldogs head coach Doug Galloway, whose team climbed back in the game by outscoring the Lions (0-6 overall) 18-4 in the third quarter. “We started to apply a lot of defensive pressure in the second half and that got us back into the game.
Monte (5-3) completed the comeback with a 23-11 fourth quarter led by junior guard Sam Winter, who went 4-for-5 from the free-throw line and scored 19 of his game-high 28 points in the second half.
“He just started being more aggressive and taking the ball to the hole a little better,” Galloway said of Winter’s second-half improvement.
In addition to his high-point total, Winter grabbed seven rebounds, distributed six assists and had three steals on the night.
Evan Bates also played a big role in Monte’s comeback. The 6-foot-1 senior scored 17 points and grabbed five rebounds. He also went a perfect 6-for-6 from the free-throw line in the second half.
Bulldogs center Tanner Nicklas had a double-double on the evening, registering 11 points and 10 rebounds in the contest.
Monte shot 22-for-66 from the field and hit an impressive 12-of-13 free throws, all of which were in the second half.
Cottage Grove shot 19-for-55 from the field and 11-for-21 from the charity stripe.
Montesano is back at it tomorrow when it faces Madras at 1:30 p.m. in the final day of the tournament.
— Ryan Sparks, Grays Harbor News Group