Photo by Ted Escobar
Zillah senior guard Kaia John tries dives for a loose ball as Cle-Elum Roslyn senior guard Emily Lussier gains control just outside the key.
As of Thursday, March 1, 2018
YAKIMA Playing a much more balanced game on offense and defense than they did against Medical Lake at regionals Saturday, the Zillah Leopards hammered Cle Elum, 61-35, last night to advance in the 1A girls state basketball tournament at the Yakima Valley SunDome.
The Leopards, 23-2, will have all of the motivation in the world for tonight’s game against LaSalle. Until LaSalle stopped them at the district tournament, Zillah was unbeaten.
Game time at the Yakima Valley Sun Dome will be 7:15 p.m. The winner will advance to the final four on Friday.
Zillah came out hot against the Warriors and led, 18-4, with 2:45 left in the first period, scoring from all over the floor. Abbie Myers led the early charge with 7 points. Samantha Bowman added 4.
Cle Elum closed the gap to 20-10 at the end of one quarter, but Zillah took charge again to build a 33-21 halftime lead.
If there was any doubt that Zillah wasn’t back in form, the Leopards dispelled that with a 16-6 fourth period. They played as furiously with the lead as the did building it. The Leopards ran from the first whistle to the final horn.
“We got back to playing Zillah Leopard basketball,” coach Brandie Valadez said.
Hollie Ziegler dropped a 3-point bomb from the side with 33 seconds left to give the Leopards their biggest lead of the night, which was the final score.
The 6-3 Bowman, who was hounded and pounded by the Warrior defense all game, worked her way to 14 points and 10 rebounds. Myers, who made both of her trey attempts, scored 9 points and pulled down 9 rebounds.
Others to score for Zillah were Lauren Ziegler 6, Madison Elizondo 6, Kaia John 5, Hollie Ziegler 5, and Addison Krueger 4. Myers took down 4 rebounds, Krueger 3 and Karissa Delp 1.
The Leopards shot 56 percent from the field in the first half and backed that up with 55.3 percent in the second half.
Cle Elum was led by the 15 points of Anna Kelly. No other Warrior scored in double figures.