Henning, Searle lead Warrior men past Saints

The Warriors post scores 23 points and snags 12 rebounds in an 82-63 victory over Mount Hood.

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WALLA WALLA — Center Emery Henning produced a double-double — with 23 points and 12 rebounds, both game highs — and wing Ben Searle added 22 points Friday night to lead Walla Walla Community College’s men’s basketball team to an 82-63 victory over Mount Hood during the opening session of the annual Warrior Classic in the Dietrich Dome.


In another men’s game played Friday, involving two of the Warriors’ rivals in the NWAACC Eastern Region, Big Bend hit the century mark while downing Columbia Basin, 101-80.


Classic games scheduled for Saturday had Mount Hood playing Big Bend and WWCC opposing CBC.


"It was a good win," Walla Walla coach Jeff Reinland said. "They are big and physical. Any time you hold Mount Hood to 63 points, you’ve got to feel pretty good.


Searle gave the Warriors an early 15-6 lead with a transition layin at the 12:32 mark of half one.


Following a brief Mpunt Hood surge, D.J. Wright stroked back-to-back 3-point goals — the latter coming with 8:09 on the clock — that re-established the nine-point spread, 23-14.


Henning gave Walla Walla its biggest lead of the period, 28-18, by sinking two free throws with 4:42 to go.


The Warriors went into halftime on the long end of a 36-27 count.


Mount Hood’s Earl Jones drained a 3-pointer to tie the game at 46-46 with 11:59 left.


The Saints took a two-point edge, 48-46, moments later before WWCC went on a 12-0 run to reclaim control of the game. A Boris Vlaco basket ended the surge with 7:02 remaining.


A defensive adjustment was another key during the run.


"We went to a match-up zone," Reinland said. "It slowed them down. I thought it was the turning point of the game because they were outplaying us. They took it to us for a while."


Searle, who made just 2-of-8 shots in the first half and was 1-for-6 from 3-point range, helped put the game further out of reach with a trio of treys over a one-minute, 10-second stretch. The last of his makes, with 3:05 to go, gave the Warriors a 72-55 lead.


"Ben had kind of struggled prior to that," Reinland said. "He got it going in the second half."


Jason Smith added 11 points for the Warriors and Wright ended up with 10.


Jamar Johnson led the Saints with 16 points and Jones added 15. The two combined for 52 points against the Warriors last season in a match-up at the Mount Hood Christmas tournament, Reinland said.

MOUNT HOOD (63) — Jones 5-17 3-4 15, D. Johnson 1-6 1-2 4, J. Johnson 3-14 10-12 16, Williams 1-3 0-0 3, Strasburg 5-10 1-2 11, D. Jones 0-0 0-0 0, J. Jones 3-5 1-2 7, Weitzel 2-3 0-0 4, Moreland 1-5 0-2 3, Gepford 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 21-65 16-24 63.
WWCC (82) — Wright 3-5 2-2 10, Roll 1-2 0-2 2, Andrews 0-4 4-7 4, Steele 1-2 0-0 3, Gibson 0-4 1-2 1, Van de Graff 1-1 0-0 3, Schultz 0-0 1-2 1, Smith 3-7 2-2 11, Searle 8-15 0-0 22, Vlaco 1-1 0-0 2, Moore 0-2 0-0 0, Corsi 0-2 0-0 0, Henning 7-8 9-14 23. Totals 25-53 19-31 82.

Halftime score — WWCC 36, Mount Hood 27. 3-point goals — Mount Hood 5-19 (Jones 2-9, Williams 1-1, Moreland 1-2, Johnson 1-3, Strasburg 0-1, Johnson 0-3), WWCC 13-30 (Searle 6-11, Smith 3-6, Wright 2-3, Steele 1-1, Van de Graaf 1-1, Roll 0-1, Moore 0-1, Henning 0-1, Gibson 0-2, Andrews 0-3). Total fouls—Mount Hood 26, WWCC 19. Fouled out—Moumt Hood (Weitzel, Johnson). Technical fouls—none. Rebounds—Mount Hood 41 (Strasburg 10), WWCC 51 (Henning 12). Turnovers—Mount Hood 16, WWCC 23. Assists—Mount Hood 4 (four with one each), WWCC 13 (Andrews 7).

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