YAKIMA – For five Freeman seniors, a dream they’d focused on for 10 years came true Wednesday.
The five – Peter Heinen, Dylan Maine, Taylor Vold, Chase Watson and Jared Hinch – have played together since third grade. By beating Nooksack Valley 58-45 in the State 1A boys basketball tournament in the SunDome, the quintet not only realized their dream of playing at state, but they became part of the first Freeman team since 2004 to win a first-round game.
Freeman will play Meridian at 5:30 tonight in the second quarterfinal.
“Us five have been talking about getting here for a long time,” Heinen said after the game. “Now we just want to concentrate on one game at a time.”
The win snapped a four-game state tournament losing streak dating to 2006 for Freeman (18-5) and the Scotties are 1-1 in the SunDome this year. Freeman lost to fellow quarterfinalist Granger in January.
Heinen was the offensive catalyst for Freeman early, scoring 14 first-half points and creating other opportunities with his slashing style. He finished with 17 points and six rebounds, backing up Vold’s 22 points and eight rebounds
Granger 52, Lakeside (Nine Mile Falls) 33: A stifling Spartans defense shut the Eagles out for an 11:57 stretch to close out the game, knocking Lakeside (11-14) into the consolation bracket. Lakeside, which lost in the first round for the third straight time in a state tournament, will play Toledo in a loser-out game at 9 a.m. today.
Granger’s defense made a difference early and late. The Spartans held Lakeside without a field goal for the first 8:40 of the game when Ryan Gunderson hit a short turnaround jumper in the key to make it 12-6.
Granger bounced back from a 14-2 Lakeside run – a burst that gave the Eagles a 33-28 lead – by shutting out the Eagles the rest of the way. Granger scored the final 24 points of the contest.
“They lived through our short run and came back and got their offense going,” Lakeside coach David Pratt said.
Pratt praised the third-quarter play of Chris Cochran who hit two 3-pointers and a layin in the Eagles’ run.
Cascade Christian 54, Lake Roosevelt 38: The Cougars used four 3-pointers in the first half to build a 33-20 lead and then held off two Raiders runs in the second half.
Lake Roosevelt (16-9) will play Burbank at 12:30 p.m. today.
Ty Egbert led Lake Roosevelt with 11 points. Jake Fury chipped in 10.