The highly regarded South Wasco County High Redsides girls basketball team remained undefeated at 5-0 after winning three games last week.
The Lady Redsides have the No. 1 ranked offense (51.6 points per game average) out of 45 OSAA Class 1A teams. South Wasco demonstrated its impressive offense in winning a pair of road games, including 58-51 over the Culver Bulldogs (0-7) May 31 and a 41-29 victory over the Echo Cougars (1-5) June 1.
The Redsides then faced their most formidable opponent so far this short eight-game spring season in a matchup against Dufur High (3-2). Dufur came into the area rivalry matchup with momentum after two straight league wins. Dufur won 50-31 over the Horizon Christian Hawks (0-3) June 1, followed by a 61-41 home win over Sherman (0-4) June 2.
The Rangers, guided by Coach Nathan Morris, were on the verge of winning, but the Redsides came from behind in the final moments of the game to win a thriller 43-42 Friday at South Wasco High in Maupin.
“It was a tough loss against a pretty decent team (South Wasco),” said Morris. “We didn’t shoot the ball very well early in the game and we just didn’t play well for three and a half quarters. Instead of giving up, we fought back and gave ourselves a chance, but we just came up short. I was disappointed with the loss, but I was definitely not disappointed with our effort and heart.”
South Wasco led 21-13 at the half and 30-23 after three quarters. Dufur trailed the entire game and then rallied by scoring 19 points in the fourth quarter to take a 42-38 lead with 28 seconds remaining. South Wasco freshman Julie Hull (six points) sank a three-point field goal trimming the margin to 42-41. On Dufur’s ensuing possession the Rangers missed a free throw and South Wasco’s Jade McCoy grabbed the rebound and passed the ball to her sister, Sadie, who scored the game-winning basket on a layup with three seconds left for a 43-42 win.
“We were a little flat in a hot gym to start the game, but we came alive in the second half with great effort and improved offensive movement,” said Morris. “Hannah Kortge (four points) had some great defensive plays down the stretch and a couple of put back layins despite being the smallest player on the court. Piper Neal (seven points) hit a game-tying three-pointer with a couple of minutes left. Kierstan White played one of the best games of her career with 13 points and 12 rebounds. They (Redsides) made two big shots down the stretch to come away with the one-point win.
For South Wasco, senior Destiny Mora-Lopez scored a team-high 13 points, Sadie McCoy and Kylie Iverson both scored six points and senior Jade McCoy had five.
South Wasco’s next game is on the road Wednesday against the Trout Lake Mustangs (6-0). The Redsides conclude the season with a 4 p.m. contest June 12 at Dufur, followed by a June 14 season finale home game at 3 p.m. versus the Country Christian Cougars (6-1). The Cougars won 69-52 over the Redsides in an OSAA first-round state playoff game Feb. 25, 2020, in the last matchup between the two 1A powerhouse squads.
Dufur played Horizon (0-3) Tuesday (results came after the printed edition deadline) and the Rangers meet the Damascus Christian Eagles (2-1) on Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Dufur High School, followed by a 4 p.m. home contest June 12 against South Wasco. The Rangers conclude the season with a 6 p.m. road game June 14 against the Ione/Arlington Cardinals (2-2), followed by a season finale home game June 15 versus the Trinity Lutheran Saints (4-0) of Bend.
Sherman played the Ione/Arlington Cardinals (2-2) June 8 (results came after the printed edition deadline) and the Huskies conclude their seven-game schedule with a pair of games this weekend. The Huskies will be seeking their first win when they play on the road against the Horizon Christian Hawks Friday at 6 p.m. in Hood River, followed by their season finale at home Saturday at 6 p.m. versus the Trout Lake Mustangs.
Horizon lost 49-24 on the road June 2 to Trout Lake, despite Zoe LeBreton’s 13 points, and had a rematch at home with the Mustangs June 7, followed by a contest June 8 on the road against Dufur (results came after printed edition deadline). Horizon plays its final road game of the season Thursday at 5:30 p.m. against the North Clackamas Christian Saints (3-2) in Oregon City and hosts Sherman Friday.