OROVILLE – The Oroville Hornets traveled to Liberty Bell last Friday hoping to prove once and for all who would be the sole league champ, but came away from a loss that had them sharing the title with not only Liberty Bell, but Kittitas as well.
Despite the tie, Oroville had the luck of the draw and will be the number one seed at the playoffs with Liberty Bell seeded second and Kittitas third.
“We ended the season with a three way tie for the league championship with
Kittitas and Liberty Bell, but we got the tie breaker for the #1 seed because of a higher draw,” said Oroville Coach Carl Iverson. “We play Saturday at 2:30 at Wenatchee High School against the winner of Soap Lake at Bridgeport game.”
Against Liberty Bell on the Mountain Lion’s home court the game was perhaps closer than its 65 to 51 score might lead one to believe. Oroville trailed after the first quarter by four, but cut the Mountain Lion’s lead to just three going into the locker rooms at half time. However in the third quarter Liberty Bell outscored the Hornets two to one, increasing their lead to 12. Oroville was unable to come back from the deficit and their rivals for top league honors finished ahead by 14 points.
“(We had a) good first half, but in the third we turned the ball over and they got many lay-ins because we allowed dribble penetration. We lost our concentration,
and they went up 14 and we never recovered,” said Coach Iverson. “Another key was Zeb and Marcus were held to just one point in the second half, after scoring 14 in the first half.
Zac Kinman led the Oroville team with 22 points, followed by Zeb Guenther with 10, Luke Rowton with six, Cody Mills and Marcus Kinman with five each and Brandon Funston, with three.
The Hornets had just come off a terrific senior night against Manson sending the Trojans home with a 79 to 42 loss.
Z. Kinman was again the top point maker with 31 points, followed by Mills with 14, Guenther with 10 and Luke Rowton with seven. Chris Wolley contributed six, Jake Thornton, five; M. Kinman, three, Jacob Hilstad two and Funston, one.
Oroville got off to a quick start putting a ten point lead on the board in the first quarter and growing it to 23 by the end of the half. By the end of the third it was Oroville 62 to 32 and there was no looking back for the Oroville team.
“Every player scored and it was a great senior night. We played good team defense and had our fast break was working well, which got us some quick, easy baskets,” said Iverson.
The Oroville Boys will play Saturday, Feb. 16 at Wenatchee at 2:30 p.m. against
the winner of Bridgeport/Soap Lake Game. They will play Monday, opponent and time to be determined. Only one team from the North Central District will advance to state.
“If we win we will play Monday at 7 p.m.,” said Iverson. “If we lose we will play Monday at 4 p.m.”
According to the Washington Interscholastic Athletic Association website, the schedule is as follows:
The Oroville girls also lost their game against Liberty Bell. They play Tuesday Feb. 12 at 6:30 p.m. at Bridgeport in a loser-out/winner-in play-off, according to Oroville High School Athletic Director Greg Farley. Should they win they will play Thursday at 4:00 PM in Wenatchee against Soap Lake and Monday opponent and time to be determined.