MOXEE - Composure is the one word that stands out and best describes the performance of the Grandview High School boys basketball team.
The Greyhounds took the best shot East Valley had to offer last night, winning 87-69. The road win by Grandview gave the Greyhounds at least a share of the league title right now and top seed into next week's postseason tournament.
The win over the always tenacious Red Devils boosted the Greyhounds' league record to 10-1 (17-2 overall). Grandview is one game up on Connell in the league standings heading into Friday night's regular season finale at home against Othello. Even if the Greyhounds end up in a tie with the Eagles for the league title, Grandview will take the top seed into next week's bi-district tournament at Kiona-Benton as a result of a pre-season number draw to decide tiebreakers. Grandview Coach Scott Parrish said his Greyhounds will play the No. 4 seed from the north division, which looks to be Omak, in the opening round of the postseason.
The opening half of last night's game between Grandview and East Valley can be compared to the gunfight at the O.K. Corral. Both teams battled in a shootout in the first half. Both teams exchanged numerous 3-pointers in the first half on their way to racking up a combined 89 points in the opening two quarters.
"We told them (Grandview) at halftime the first few minutes of the second half would be critical," said Parrish.
The first few minutes of the second half were crucial, as the Red Devils came out of the locker room flat. The same energy that East Valley matched Grandview with in the first half was nowhere to be found in the last two quarters.
Grandview built on its 47-42 halftime lead by outscoring East Valley 40 to 27 in the second half. The Greyhounds opened the second half scoring on its first couple of possessions. East Valley made a late charge in the third quarter, accounting for the Red Devils 14-point showing.
"I was real proud of my kids," said Parrish. "East Valley was coming at us like crazy in the first half. I told the kids during halftime I think you just took their (the Red Devils) best shot and withstood it. I was real happy with the way we kept our poise."
The key, said Parrish, was the defensive play of the Greyhounds in the second half. In the first half, East Valley was beating Grandview back in transition, getting several good looks at 3-pointers. Parrish called off Grandview's press in the second half and went to a half-court defense, which the Red Devils had a hard time penetrating.
The Red Devils also had a hard time finding an answer for the play of Chris Mejia. Mejia basically did what he wanted to against double and sometimes triple coverage, finishing with 33 points. Mejia was 14-of-17 from the field. Parrish praised the play of his big man and the way he made things happen in the game.
Grandview did have several turnovers in the game, but Parrish said they were ones he could live with as a coach.
"That pressure they were putting on us (was tremendous)," said Parrish. "They were bodying us. We played a pretty physical game."
Parrish also had strong words of praise for the play of his floor captain, James Vela, and Adam Dion. Parrish said Dion had some crucial buckets early in the game that helped establish the tone. Parrish added that Vela was solid in leading the Greyhounds. Vela was also money at the free throw line for Grandview, going 9-for-11.
Grandview hit 26-of-32 from the free throw line while East Valley hardly saw the charity stripe, going 9-for-17 from the line.
The Greyhounds shot the ball well from the field, hitting 27-of-49.
Grandview ends the regular season at home Friday night against Othello. Before the start of the boys basketball game, the Greyhounds will be honoring former head coach Mike Schuette and his State championship teams from 1989 and 1990.
1 2 3 4 T
Grandview 20 27 14 26 87
East Valley 17 25 14 13 69
Scoring: Grandview-Chris Mejia 33, James Vela 18, Anthony Andrews 14, Adam Dion 11, Cordero Cisneros 6, Frankie Medina 5.
East Valley-Matt Snell 23.