Little consolation for area teams
NAMPA, Idaho – North Idaho boys basketball teams went 1 for 5 in consolation trophy games Saturday morning, securing just one piece of hardware.
St. Maries was the lone winner as the Lumberjacks captured fourth – their first trophy since 1998 – with a 60-52 win over Filer in the 3A state tournament at Meridian High School.
In other games, Twin Falls held off Post Falls 51-45 for third in 5A; Jerome handled Sandpoint 83-67 for third in 4A; Sugar-Salem got past Priest River 61-55 for third in 3A; and Wilder topped Wallace 47-40 for fourth in 1A Division I.
Twin Falls 51, Post Falls 45: Just like the night before, the Trojans had opportunities. But they made things more difficult than they needed to be at Columbia High School.
Like Madison on Friday, Twin Falls brutalized Post Falls on the boards, gaining a 41-27 advantage. The Bruins outrebounded the Trojans 14-8 on the offensive end.
“We had a common denominator in these games down here,” Post Falls coach Mike McLean said. “It’s a problem that’s not fixable until we get to the offseason. We just have to get stronger.
“It’s a little bit of an issue we’re dealing with at Post Falls High School. The biggest difference between where we are and where we need to be is strength.”
Senior wing Justin Carter agreed.
“The offensive boards, they killed us,” Carter said.
Twin Falls (20-9) got a three-point play to open the second half, building a 26-17 lead.
Midway through the period, McLean called a timeout and gave an intense chat to his team.
The Trojans responded, pulling within 36-35 on a 3-pointer by Malcolm Colbert with 59 seconds left in the quarter.
Two free throws from Shawn Reid gave the Trojans (18-7) their lone lead in the fourth quarter at 41-40 with 6:08 remaining.
An 8-0 spurt by Twin Falls put the Trojans back in a hole they didn’t escape.
“It’s a tough loss,” Carter, the Trojans’ lone senior starter, said. “We thought we should have been (playing for the state title). We should have come out and played harder. I don’t think we showed up to the game to play.”
“Our kids were not excited about playing this game,” McLean said. “We tried to get our guys fired up, but that’s no excuse. There’s absolutely no excuse why we shouldn’t be fired up to play in the third-place game at state. That’s just being very immature.”
McLean was at least pleased that his team responded after a lethargic first half.
“I really got on our guys at halftime,” he said. “I really challenged them to be a little more physical, to become more physically active – to play like we can. I thought we complained to the officials. I thought we acted ‘crybabyish.’ I think it came back to our feelings being hurt (after Friday) and that’s a sign of immaturity.”
Reid led PF with 16 points and Carter had 10. Jon Pulsifer led TF with 20 points and 14 rebounds – six of which were offensive rebounds.
PF didn’t play as well at state as it did in defeating Lewiston 69-62 in the Region I title game.
“You come down here and you’re not on top of your game, there are no second chances,” McLean said.
Jerome 83, Sandpoint 67: The Tigers pulled away in the second half as the Bulldogs, seeking their first state trophy, couldn’t keep pace. The Tigers led 36-33 at halftime, but they built as much as a 62-44 lead in the second half. Doing most of the damage was Logan Parker, who had a game-high 31 points on 10-of-16 shooting, including 7 of 13 3-point tries.
Stefan Buratto led Sandpoint (10-16) with 25 points, five rebounds and five assists. Tanner French had 11 points, four steals and three assists and Spencer Swerin had 10 points and 11 rebounds.
Sugar-Salem 61, Priest River 55: The Spartans led 29-20 at halftime, but the Diggers took control in the final two quarters.
Brennon Bean led the Diggers with 21 points. Jake Weimer led the Spartans (19-3) with 19 points and Max Salesky had 17.
St. Maries 60, Filer 52: The Lumberjacks (19-5) outscored the Wildcats 15-7 in the third quarter to seize control. Aaron Corsi led St. Maries with 20 points, 13 rebounds and seven blocked shots while his brother, Matt, had 11 rebounds and seven assists. Zach Lehman chipped in 15 points.
1A Division I
Wilder 47, Wallace 40: The Wildcats got 15 second-chance points to the Miners’ four and that proved the difference.
Jared Bilaski led Wallace (16-8) with 24 points, nine rebounds and three steals.