As of Wednesday, February 17, 2016
GOLDENDALE A hot hand sparked the Sunnyside Christian boys basketball team to a 72-49 victory over Goldendale in a loser-out, winner-to-regionals contest last night.
The Knights led 35-21 at the half and looked to be on their way to Friday’s regionals game.
But in the third quarter the Pirates went on a 14-3 run to close within 38-35.
“We struggled with foul trouble in the third,” Sunnyside Christian coach Dean Wagenaar said.
The Knights also struggled in the quarter to stop Bickleton’s Nathan Powers, who canned three 3-pointers to lead the Pirates’ charge.
Wagenaar praised Bickleton’s defense in slowing the Knights’ leading scorer, Luke Wagenaar.
“We needed to have another guy hitting shots,” coach Wagenaar said.
That other guy proved to be Lane Marsh, who nailed four consecutive shots from 3-point range to put the Knights back up by double digits.
“That gave us a cushion and we extended it,” Wagenaar said.
Marsh scored 18 to share game-high honors with Luke Wagenaar. Marsh’s twin brother, Lane, tallied 17 points.
Powers paced Bickleton with 17 points and Riley Brown added 13.
“The boys made a mighty comeback in the third quarter, but we ran into some roadblocks that kept us at bay,” Bickleton coach Jerry Roberts said. “I am so proud of the effort and heart that the boys have shown through the season.”
Dean Wagenaar praised Bickleton and their coach. “Kudos to those kids. We knew it was going to be a difficult game.”
Sunnyside Christian plays Yakama Tribal at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Zillah Middle School. Win or lose, the Knights are through to the regional round. A victory over Yakama Tribal would force another game against the Eagles this Saturday to decide the district title.
At 6 p.m. Friday, also at Zillah Middle School, the Sunnyside Christian girls play Lyle-Wishram with the district title on the line.