OREGON CITY, Ore. — After shooting just 20 percent from beyond the 3-point arc in the first two games of the Clackamas Holiday men’s basketball tournament here over the weekend, Walla Walla heated up from long distance on Sunday.
But despite draining 17-of-35 3-pointers (49 percent) against NWAACC Eastern Region rival Yakima in the game to decide fourth and sixth places in the tourney, the Warriors fell victim to four costly mistakes late in the game and allowed the Yaks to escape with a 103-100 victory.
“We had the ball and we were up by six points with six minutes to play,” WWCC coach Jeff Reinland said. “And we made four bonehead plays in a row where Yakima got layins. It happened real fast.
“We thought we had Yakima panicked just a little bit. They were running around and pressing us, and we forced the issue. I just think it shows a little inexperience on our part, because we have just one player out there who saw any meaningful playing time last year.”
The Warriors never regained the lead after Yakima’s four-basket flurry, Reinland said. The Yaks built their lead to six points before Eric Harr sank a 3-pointer at the buzzer to cut the final margin to three points.
For Harr, a 6-foot freshman, it was his seventh 3-point basket of the night and gave him a game-high 32 points. The Twin Falls, Idaho, guard was 7-for-10 from beyond the 3-point line and 10-for-17 from the field overall.
Harr got plenty of offensive help from another freshman, Case Rada, a 6-2 guard from Kennewick, who tallied 26 points on 8-for-20 shooting from the floor and 7-for-8 from the free-throw line. Sophomores Hunter Hahn, who was 4-for-5 from downtown, and Dylan Radliff were also in double figures with 16 and 13 points, respectively.
Yakima’s attack was more balanced as six different Yaks finished in double figures.
Joel YellowOwl led the way with 22 points, and he also snagged a game-high eight rebounds as the Yaks held a 44-36 advantage on the glass. Tomas Ogbaslassic added 16 points, Lawrence Fiander tallied 15, Shannon Isadore and Erik Martinez chipped in with 13 points each and Rico Bolivar added 11 points.
“Neither team played very good defense,” Reinland noted. “But on the reverse side, both teams had some offensive players who were very hard to stop.
“I would like to see us work a little harder on the defensive end of the floor. That has kind of been the theme of our season so far, and it is what we have to focus on. It’s not a work-ethic thing, but it is where we have to get mentally tougher.”
The loss leveled Walla Walla’s record at 6-6. The Warriors opened tournament play here on Friday with a 76-65 loss to Centralia in which it made just 5-of-34 3-point shots and then defeated Everett 99-91 on Saturday with an 8-for-31 mark from beyond the arc.
“We’re not shooting the ball very well and that’s another issue,” Reinland said. “Our 3-point shooting here the first two days was horrendous, although we were a whole lot better against Yakima.
“We started the season 0-3 and now we’re 6-6, so we’ve done some pretty good stuff. And we’ve played some pretty good teams, too.”
The Warriors open Eastern Region play Saturday when they travel to Columbia Basin College in Pasco. The opening tip is slated for 4 p.m.
Yakima 103, Walla Walla 100
YAKIMA (103) — Flowers 1-1 0-0 2, Martinez 5-8 2-3 13, Bonser 2-4 2-2 6, Isadore 5-10 2-2 13, Fiander 7-9 1-3 15, YellowOwl 9-15 4-7 22, Ogbaslassic 7-12 0-0 16, Howe 2-3 1-1 5, Bolivar 0-0 0-0 0, Pale 5-7 1-2 11. Totals 43-69 13-20 103.
WALLA WALLA (100) — Radliff 3-13 5-6 13, Rada 8-20 7-8 26, Mills 1-3 0-0 2, Reich 2-4 0-0 5, Hahn 6-10 0-0 16, Harr 10-17 5-9 32, Hight 0-2 2-2 2,Nooner 1-4 202 4.
Halftime — WWCC 47, Yakima 46. 3-point goals — Yakima 4-9 Martinez 1-1, Isadore 1-3, Ogbaslassic 2-5), WWCC 17-35 (Radliff 2-6, Rada 3-12, Reich 1-2, Hahn 4-5, Harr 7-10). Total fouls — Yakima 30, WWCC 18. Fouled out — WWCC (Radliff). Technical fouls — WWCC (bench). Rebounds — Yakima 44 (YellowOwl 9), WWCC 36 (Rada 7). Turnovers — Yakima 17, WWCC 13. Assists — Yakima 23 (Martinez 8), WWCC 12 (Harr 4).