Experienced Braves defeat Blue Devils

Kamiakin builds a 28-17 lead late in the first half and runs to a 64-44 win.

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Wa-Hi's Seth Alden, left, comes down in a tangle of arms with Kamiakin's Zach En'Wezoh, right, under the basket Thursday evening. Alden came away with possession and put a shot back up in the 64-44 Wa-Hi loss.

WALLA WALLA - Wa-Hi's Matt Watson converted a feed from Seth Alden to cut the Kamiakin lead to 18-17 with 2:15 left in the first period here Thursday in non-conference boys basketball action.

The Braves then went on a 10-0 run as Justin Pedley capped the run with two of his game-high 21 points, and Kamiakin grabbed a 28-17 lead with 3:07 left in the first half.

Wa-Hi could never dig out of the hole as the deep and experienced Braves went on to post a 64-44 win.

"Every single one of those guys played us last year in the regional (a Wa-Hi win) to go to state," Blue Devil coach John Golden said. "It was good for us to measure up against a quality team like that. We've still got some things we need to work on. But I liked how our guys competed."

Both teams couldn't miss to open the game. The Braves hit eight of their first 10 shots from the field, and Wa-Hi hit eight of its first 12 Kamiakin went up 18-17 with 2:15 left in period one.

Kamiakin hit three of its next seven shots and converted all four free throw attempts, and went to a zone that slowed the Blue Devils as Wa-Hi failed to score over the seven-minute stretch to open a 28-17 lead.

"They started out ‘man,' and I thought we did some great things against their man," Golden said. "They went ‘zone' and that's when we hit that stretch and didn't score."

Wa-Hi got treys from Moe Handcox and Kevin Toon to close out the first half down 32-23.

Watson opened the second half with a Blue Devil bucket to narrow the gap to 32-25, but the Braves answered with a 6-0 run to push the lead to double digits at 38-25 with 4:37 left in the third quarter.

"We come out and scored a bucket," Golden said of the second-half start. "Then, we just aren't able to put the ball in the hole."

A Watson bucket, two Alex Ceron free throws and a 3 from Alden got Wa-Hi back within 39-32 with 2:50 left in the third.

But Case Rada hit a deuce and a trey to spark a 7-0 Brave run to close out the third with the Braves up 46-32.

Ceron scored to get Wa-Hi within 53-40 with five minutes left, but the Braves, behind Pedley's eight points, went on a 11-0 run to take charge at 64-40 with 1:12 to play.

Two Handcox free throws and a Levi Swenson bucket closed this one out as Kamiakin improved to 6-1 with the 64-44 win.

Kamiakin got balanced scoring, with Rada's 18 and Shad Fletcher's 10 joined Pedley in double digits.

Ceron led Wa-Hi with 11 points. Watson added 10 and grabbed a game-high eight rebounds. Alden finished with eight points and Handcox added seven.

Wa-Hi returns to Columbia Basin Big Nine Class 4A play next Friday hosting Davis.

"The effort continues to be there," Golden said. "The loss doesn't affect us (in league). We're 2-0 in league and back to focusing on our league. Davis has a lot of guys back from its state tournament team. There are no easy ones, but we did a little work to get two big wins (league, Richland and Moses Lake), and we need to build on that."

Kamiakin 64, Wa-Hi 44

KAMIAKIN (64) - Hayfield 0-2 0-0 0, Rada 8-12 0-0 18, Holle 2-7 0-0 4, Fletcher 4-8 0-1 10, Anderson 1-1 0-0 2, En'Wezoh 3-4 2-3 8, Quinn 0-0 1-2 1, Hunt 0-1 0-0 0, Pedley 7-10 7-8 21. Totals 25-45 10-14 64.

WA-HI (44) - Toon 1-3 0-0 3, Ceron 4-8 3-3 11, Swenson 1-3 0-0 2, Handcox 2-10 2-3 7, Peasley 0-1 0-0 0, Eggers 0-0 0-0 0, Campeau 0-2 0-2 0, Alden 3-9 0-0 8, Dunovant 0-2 0-0 0, Ferenz 1-1 1-2 3, Watson 5-8 0-1 10. Totals 17-47 6-11 44.

Kamiakin 20 12 14 18 - 64

Wa-Hi 17 6 9 12 - 44

3-point goals - Kam 4-12 (Hayfield 0-2, Rada 2-3, Holle 0-2, Fletcher 2-3, Pedley 0-2), Wa-Hi 4-16 (Toon 1-1, Ceron 0-3, Swenson 0-1, Handcox 1-3, Peasley 0-1, Alden 2-7). Total fouls- Kam 16, Wa-Hi 14. Fouled out - none. Technical fouls - none. Rebounds - Kam 30 (Anderson 7), Wa-Hi 28 (Watson 8). Turnovers - Kam 14, Wa-Hi 16. Assists - Kam 13 (Fletcher 6), Wa-Hi 14 (Handcox 4).

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