Central Valley has many ways they can beat a team.
The Bears have a luxury in 6-foot-10 Gavin Gilstrap – coming into his own after a year mostly lost to injury. They’ve got guys that can fill it up from the outside, and they’ve got all-star players in other sports willing to provide quality minutes off the bench.
And they have a guy at point guard that conducts it all like a maestro.
It was all on display on Friday in the District 8 4A championship game.
Gilstrap scored 21 points – nine in the first quarter when the Bears built an 18-10 lead – and added eight rebounds and Greater Spokane League champ Central Valley handled third-seeded Gonzaga Prep 68-53 in the late game at the Toyota Center in Kennewick.
Noah Sanders had 17 points for Central Valley (21-2) while Jayce Simmons added 16.
“One thing we pride ourselves on is was have a lot of guys that can fill it up,” Simmons said. “I think people are starting to see we’re for real now.”
“We were able to avoid that big Prep run,” CV coach Mike Laws said. “”We took pretty good care of the ball and our shot selection for the most part was solid
“When we got in trouble we just took our big guy and let him go to work.”
Gonzaga Prep (17-6) was led by Liam Lloyd with 20 points. The Pups plays Chiawana in the district second-place game on Saturday.
Carsen Raab’s 3-pointer at the horn gave CV an 18-10 lead after one.
Jayce Simmons heated up in the second quarter. He banged home a 3 and had two more baskets for seven points in the frame and nine for the half as CV led 37-23 at intermission.
G-Prep got its deficit back to 11 midway through the third, but Simmons nailed a 3 from the top of the key and Gilstrap scored from close-in then next time down to make it 48-33.
Gilstrap fed the 6-2 Sanders for an alley-oop later in the quarter. Sanders had eight in the frame and CV led 56-40 after three.
Lloyd has a quick six points early in the fourth as the Pups whittled the deficit down to 12. But the offense dried up down the stretch and Gilstrap’s layin with 2 minutes left put the Bears back up by 15.
Local journalism is essential.
Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.
Subscribe to the sports newsletter
Get the day’s top sports headlines and breaking news delivered to your inbox by subscribing here.