Playoffs next after WWCC women take down Wolves

The Warrior women, already a tourney seed, top Blue Mountain 67-57 to close the regular season.


PENDLETON - Even though Walla Walla Community College didn't need to win its final regular-season NWAACC women's basketball game, the Warriors still traveled to Blue Mountain seeking a victory.

Blue Mountain took a one-point lead at the half, 27-26, but the Warriors - led by Alex Pfefferle's 26 points and a combined 49 points off the bench - rallied for a 67-57 win.

"Alex (Pfefferle) picked a great time to have her best game of the year," said WWCC head coach Bobbi Hazeltine.

Pfefferle and the rest of the bench stepped up big when the Warriors starters struggled, Hazeltine said.

"Our starters really struggled and we got great play out of the bench," she said. "In order to be a good team, you have to have a deep bench and I thought our freshmen played very well."

Blue Mountain opened with a trapping zone defense, which the Timberwolves used throughout the game, Hazeltine said. The press and a quick rotation of players caught the Warriors off guard, she said.

"In the first half we struggled with that because we're not used to seeing it," she said. "So we made some adjustments in the second on how we would attack their defense, and we did a pretty good job."

The Warriors also held Blue Mountain leading scorer Stephanie Lopez to 12 points on the night.

Lopez, the fifth scorer in the NWAACC, averages 19.16 points per game.

Shiann Dreadfulwater and Sienna Edmunson kept her down, Hazeltine said.

Kristen Van Cleave led the Timberwolves with 25 points on the night.

"You have to pick your poison, because they have two or three good scorers," Hazeltine said of the decision to guard Lopez over Van Cleave. "We concentrated on shutting down Lopez and Shainn and Sienna did a really good job."

Hazeltine was pleased with bench players Leslie Stillar, Edmunson and Stevie Humphries.

Those three combined for 23 points on the night.

"They gave us a bunch of points," Hazeltine said. "We pride ourselves on having a really good bench. Maybe some of those kids should be starting, but we like to bring them off the bench and they played a long time last night."

The Warriors improved to 10-4 in league and 19-6 overall. They locked the fourth East-region playoff seed with a Yakima loss Tuesday night.

Hazeltine plans to give her team the weekend off and begin preparing hard on Monday for the weekend's first-round match.

The Warriors face the North region's No. 1 seed, Skagit Valley, at 6 p.m. March 5 at the Toyota Center in Kennewick.

Walla Walla 67, Blue Mountain 57

WALLA WALLA (67) - Dreadfulwater 0-7 2-2 2, Klarich 1-1 1-2 3, Wolff 0-6 2-2 2, Stillar 3-9 1-3 9, Pfefferle 9-11 5-6 26, Duncan 3-6 0-0 6, Humphries 2-4 0-3 6, Edmunson 4-6 0-2 8, Smith 0-0 0-0 0, Jensen 1-3 3-3 5. Totals 24-53 14-23 67.

BLUE MOUNTAIN (57) - Furlow 1-4 0-0 2, Weaver 0-0 0-0 0, Evans 0-2 2-2 2, Martin 0-2 0-0 0, Van Cleave 11-16 3-7 25, Lopez 3-11 4-4 12, Telles 3-8 0-0 6, McIntyre 2-4 0-0 4, Howerton 2-6 0-0 6. Totals 22-53 9-13 57.

Halftime score - Blue Mountain 27, Walla Walla 26. 3-point goals - WWCC 5-18 (Stillar 2-8, Pfefferle 3-5, Dreadfulwater 0-1, Wolff 0-2, Duncan 0-1, Edmunson 0-1), Blue 4-17 (Lopez 2-7, Howerton 2-5, Furlow 0-1, Telles 0-2). Total fouls - WWCC 13, Blue 21. Fouled out - Evans (Blue). Technical fouls - none. Rebounds - WWCC 40 (Pfefferle 8), Blue 29 (Van Cleave 9). Turnovers - WWCC 25, Blue 24. Assists - WWCC 11 (Dreadfulwater 3, Edmunson 3), Blue 15 (Martin 4).


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