Warrior men knock off Wenatchee Valley

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WENATCHEE - Jason Smith hit 9-of-15 from beyond the arc to power a less-than-energetic Walla Walla Community College offense to a 57-48 NWAACC East Region men's basketball victory over Wenatchee Valley here Saturday.

The Warrior guard posted a game high 29-points - all but two of which came via the 3-ball - accounting for over half the total WWCC offensive output.

"We didn't bring the energy on offense and we couldn't get anything going inside," WWCC coach Jeff Reinland said. "The guys looked nervous. It was a big game. It was a team we needed to beat if we wanted any hope at the postseason. Thankfully, Jason got it going for us for a time there in the second half."

The Warriors, who average 84 points per game, were held to their lowest point total of the season due in large part to Wenatchee Valley's slow pace of play.

"(Wenatchee Valley) was really patient on offense," Reinland said. "I'd say there were 15 possessions where they ran down the entire shot clock."

"We did play good defense," he said. "We forced them to put up some very tough shots with the shot clock running down."

Wenatchee Valley was led in scoring and rebounding by Dontese Tower. Tower tallied 17 points, while cleaning the boards for eight.

WWCC played the game without guard/forward D.J. Wright, who sat out the game with a shoulder stinger. Wright, a starter, routinely scores in double figures for the Warriors.

"We definitely lost some offense by not having D.J. Wright," Reinland said.

WWCC's win boost its overall record to 16-5, 8-3 in league, good for third place in the NWAACC East behind Spokane and Big Bend. The Sasquatch and Vikings are tied atop the East with identical 9-2 records.

The Warriors face Spokane next in a home game on Wednesday. In their previous meeting in January, the Sasquatch topped the Warriors in Spokane, 88-77.

Three games remain on the Warriors schedule before the NWAACC playoffs commence in Kennewick from March 6-9 - Spokane, Big Bend, and Blue Mountain.

WWCC (57) - Roll 0-3 0-0 0, Andrews 1-7 1-2 3, Steele 2-4 0-0 6, Gibson 1-1 0-1 3, Van de Graaf 0-1 4-5 4, Fullerton 0-2 0-0 0, Smith 10-18 0-1 29, Moore 0-0 0-0 0, Corsi 1-4 1-2 3, Henning 2-8 2-2 6, Baker 1-2 0-0 3. Totals 18-50 8-13 57.

Wenatchee Valley (48) - Irwin 1-5 0-0 2, Barber 1-5 0-0 2, Peterson 4-8 3-4 12, Miller 1-3 0-0 2, Beard 2-8 2-2 6, Mifflin 0-4 0-0 0, Tower 6-15 3-5 17, Hoffman 0-4 0-1 0, Smith 1-6 0-0 2, Cubean 2-3 1-1 5. Totals 18-61 9-13 48.

HALFTIME SCORE - Walla Walla 25, Wenatchee Valley 22. 3-point goals -WWCC 13-27 (Smith 9-15, Roll 0-1, Andrews 0-4, Steele 2-3, Gibson 1-1, Van de Graaf 0-1, Fullerton 0-1, Baker 1-1), WVC 3-16 (Tower 2-3, Peterson 1-5, Miller 0-2, Beard 0-1, Mifflin 0-3, Irwin 0-2). Total fouls-WWCC 15, WVC 17. Fouled out-none. Technical fouls-none. Rebounds-WWCC 38 (Andrews 7, Steele 1, Gibson 2, Van de Graaf 2, Fullerton 3, Smith 5, Moore 2, Corsi 2, Henning 9, Baker 2, Team 3), WVC (Irwin 4, Barber 3, Peterson 4, Miller 5, Beard 2, Tower 8, Hoffman 2, Smith 5, Cubean 6, Team 6). Turnovers-WWCC 12, WVC 13. Assists-WWCC 13 (Roll 1, Andrews 7, Smith 2, Henning 3), WVC 7 (Irwin 1, Miller 2, Beard 2, Mifflin 1, Cubean 1).

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