Hyaks win thriller to clinch regional berth


MONTESANO — After playing exceptional defense for 32 minutes, North Beach’s boys settled for one clutch shot.

Corey Thornton’s basket with four seconds remaining enabled the Hyaks to clinch a regional berth with a 33-32 upset of Onalaska in the quarterfinals of the District IV Class 2B Boys Basketball Tournament on Saturday at Montesano’s Bo Griffith Memorial Gym.

Burned by Adna’s torrid shooting, Pacific League champion Raymond fell to the Pirates, 56-38, in the opening game of the district co-ed quadrupleheader at Montesano.

North Beach (14-8) will face Adna in a district semifinal scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Friday at Centralia. As importantly, the Hyaks are assured a spot in regional competition Feb. 22-23.

“These guys I’ve got here have shown a lot of heart the second half of the season,” an exultant North Beach coach Larry Moore said. “I don’t know if I’ve been more proud of a team in my 28 years here.”

Raymond (16-5) will face Wahkiakum in a loser-out game slated for 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Rochester.

Hyaks 33, Loggers 32

North Beach scored twice in the final 39 seconds to settle a taut defensive battle with Onalaska.

The Hyaks effectively employed a box-and-one defense, with Tyler Turner and Pedro Gonzalez taking turns shadowing Onalaska ace Travis McMillion. The latter, who had been averaging 19 points per game, tallied only seven in this one.

Onalaska was equally tough on the defensive end (although the Hyaks may have threatened a gym record for shots that went in-and-out or hung on the rim and fell off) to maintain a narrow lead for most of the way.

The winning basket, in fact, represented North Beach’s first lead since early in the third quarter.

Onalaska led by three, 32-29, when Travis Lawrence connected from inside the key with 57 seconds remaining. North Beach’s Justin Chong answered with a rebound basket 18 seconds later.

Chong also rebounded a Logger miss at the other end, setting up the game-deciding sequence.

North Beach’s Joseph Wagner missed a long 3-point attempt in the final 10 seconds, but the Loggers lost the rebound out of bounds.

Thornton took Wagner’s inbound pass along the right wing and nailed a 15-foot jumper from the baseline with four seconds on the clock.

“One thing about Corey, he’s not afraid to take the big shot,” Moore noted, “and he wasn’t having a great shooting game. But when it came time, he stepped up.”

Having committed only five team fouls to that point, the Hyaks took a sixth to disrupt the Loggers’ final possession. Under heavy pressure, Onlaska’s Trenton Neilson launched a long shot from the right corner that nearly banked in as time expired.

The 6-foot-1 Chong was the only player on either team to score in double figures. He finished with 10 points and six rebounds. Thornton added eight points, while Gabe Hernandez had five rebounds for North Beach.

McMillion and Lawrence scored seven points each for Onalaska.

Pirates 56, Gulls 38

Raymond got into a jump-shooting contest with Adna, a situation that assuredly worked to the Gulls’ disadvantage.

The Pirates wound up hitting 10 three-point baskets and shot 51 percent from the field. The Gulls were 2-of-13 from beyond the 3-point arc and wound up 32 percent from the floor.

“We knew they were good shooters.,” Raymond coach Mike Tully said. “Our whole focus the last week and a half was to get out on their shooters and close out and I don’t think we did a good job of that. We gave them too many open looks.”

The Gulls used their quickness to help force 30 Pirate turnovers but were unable to convert many of those. Most of Adna’s miscues came in front court, often on muffed passes, and did not lead to fast-break opportunites.

Senior guard Lane Wasson hit four of the three-balls in leading the Pirates with 20 points. Tucker Coleman, Adna’s chief perimeter threat early, finished with 16.

Junior forward Darol Ratsavongsy paced Raymond with 17 points.

Adna hit six of its first seven shots and led 25-9 early in the second quarter.

The Gulls chipped away at that deficit and narrowed the margin to three (33-30) on Ratsavongsy’s rebound basket with 1:01 remaining in the third quarter.

Wasson, however, nailed a howitzer at the end of the third quarter — a three that seemed to re-energize the Pirates and deflate the Gulls. After an exchange of baskets to open the fourth quarter, Adna went on an 18-2 run to settle the issue.

James Hamilton came off the bench to grab six rebounds, while Carte Bisbee had five assists and five steals.

Raymond guard Marvin So missed this contest due to academic ineligibility.

NB 12 5 8 8 — 33 Ona 11 8 8 5 — 32

North Beach (33) — Wagner 6, Thornton 8, Turner, Hernandez 6, Justin Chong 10, Beck, Fry, Gonzalez 3, Ketter. FG — 13-45 (.289). FT — 6-6.

Onalaska (32) — Neilson 3, Smalley 5, Fritch 4, Lawrence 7, McMillion 7, Anderson 3, Taylor 3. FG — 12-43 (.279). FT — 5-8.

Adna 16 11 9 20 — 56 Ray 7 11 12 8 — 38

Adna (56) — Zurfluh 8, Wasson 20, Coleman 16, Webster, Hoven 4, Hampton, Trotter, Moon, Kaech 2, Richardson 6. FG — 21-41 (.512). FT — 4-4.

Raymond (38) — Bisbee, Newman 1, Sida 4, Ratsavongsy 17, A. Hamilton 6, J. Hamilton 6, Maneman, Freeman, Flemetis 2, Villegas 2, Murdock, McFadden. FG — 17-53 (.321). FT — 2-6.