PENDLETON - Senior guard Dallas Reich scored 16 points and ripped down eight boards to lead the Weston-McEwen TigerScots, but it wasn't enough to overcome the Vernonia Loggers' posts Austin Edgar and Austin Cutright.
The TigerScots eventually lost, 46-37, in a battle for fourth place at the Oregon state 2A basketball tournament Saturday morning.
The inside duo of Edgar (6-foot-6) and Cutright (6-4) proved to be too much for the TigerScots, swatting four shots each and grabbing 12 and 15 rebounds, respectively. Cutright scored 14 points to wrap up a double-double and Edgar scored nine points.
With the win, the Loggers take home fourth at state and the TigerScots, thanks to their 69-62 victory over Stanfield Friday night, took home a sixth-place trophy. It was the first state basketball trophy for the TigerScots in 16 years.
"The end of this year is bittersweet," W-M coach Brian Pickard said. "We take home a state trophy, but it is hard to see our four seniors graduate."
The loss was the final match for seniors Reich, Ron Terjeson, Riley Sederberg and Elliot Salter. Despite facing a height disadvantage against the Loggers, Sederberg and Terjeson still managed to grab 12 and 10 boards, respectively.
Vernonia sported seven players at 6-2 or taller in their playing rotation, and their size helped limit the TigerScots to just 23 percent shooting from the field.
"All of those tall kids on Vernonia really had something to do with our poor shooting percentage for the game," Pickard said. "This game against Vernonia was the best game that we've played in state this season and it was against the best team we've faced. That is a good basketball team over in Vernonia. They're big, tall and athletic. They've got a few good guards. So hats off to them."
W-M was outrebounded 48-42 in the loss, but the game came down to free throws. The TigerScots hit nine-of-14 shots from the stripe. In comparison, the Loggers shot 21-of-27 from the line (77 percent) while shooting just 20 percent from the field.
Weston-McEwen started hot - jumping out to a 6-2 lead in the first three minutes on two 3-pointers from Reich - but Cutright hit a couple of free throws and Edgar a jumper to tie it at 6-all with 4:30 remaining in the first.
A putback from Terjeson gave W-M the lead at 8-6, and Sederberg sank one-of-two free throws. The Loggers then closed the first on a 6-0 run to make it 12-9, Vernonia, after one.
Vernonia's Cutright hit two more free throws and Pavel Jiranek nailed a jump shot to make it 16-9 at the 6:30 mark of the second.
Out of a W-M timeout, Zane Chapman assisted a Terjeson layin to bring the TigerScots within five, 16-11, with 6:15 left before halftime.
Champan narrowed the difference to 16-13 after scoring a fastbreak bucket, but Vernonia's Edgar scored a driving basket to push the Loggers' lead back to five, 18-13, with 5:30 remaining in the second.
Edgar struck again for two and Jiranek nailed a triple to push the Vernonia lead to 23-15 with three minutes to go before the half.
Reich cut to the hoop for a bucket on an assist from Terjeson before Cutright connected for two more points to make the score 25-17 with 2:21 remaining.
Terjeson made a free throw and hit a turn-around jumper to again bring the TigerScots within five, 25-20, at the half.
After a free throw from Salter and a jumper from Chapman, the TigerScots took a 26-25 lead with 5:11 left in the third when Reich hit another 3-pointer.
But the Loggers then went on a 5-0 run over the next 2:45, with Cutright scoring a 3-point play on a putback and the ensuing foul shot and Craig Weller scoring 2 off a driving bucket, and rebuilt a four-point, 30-26 advantage with 2:26 left in the third, a lead the Loggers did not relinquish.
The Loggers hit three free throws, and the TigerScots drained two freebies to end the third trailing, 33-28.
Vernonia outscored W-M 13-9 over the final frame to take the nine-point victory. Vernonia was 11-of-16 from the line in the fourth and three TigerScots - Terjeson, Salter and Sederberg - fouled out in the quarter.
"Our big guys got into foul trouble in the fourth and we didn't have the guys to match up with their size anymore," Pickard said. "Once Riley (Sederberg) and Ron (Terjeson) got fouled out, it caused us some problems. We still hung in there and fought until the very end."
Vernonia 46, Weston-McEwen 37
WESTON-MCEWEN (37) - Salter 0-0 1-2 1, Terjeson 4-16 1-2 10, Chapman 3-11 0-1 6, Reich 5-18 4-5 16, Sederberg 1-7 3-4 12, Ramirez 0-4 0-0 0, C. Thacker 0-0 0-0 0, L. Thacker 0-0 0-0 0, Peterson 0-0 0-0 0, Pease 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 13-56 9-14 37.
VERNONIA (46) - Jiranek 3-17 6-8 13, B. Weller 1-2 0-0 2, C. Weller 1-5 6-8 8, A. Edgar 3-14 3-4 9, Cutright 4-20 6-7 14, Leaverton 0-0 0-0 0, J. Edgar 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 12-59 21-27 46.
Weston-McEwen 9 11 8 9 - 37
Vernonia 12 13 8 13 - 46
3-point goals - W-M 2-15 (Reich 2-11, Chapman 0-2, Terjeson 0-1, Ramirez 0-1), Ver 1-11 (Jiranke 1-5, B. Weller 0-1, C. Weller 0-3, Cutright 0-2). Total fouls - W-M 23, Ver 15. Fouled out - W-M (Salter, Terjeson, Sederberg). Technical fouls - W-M (bench). Rebounds - W-M 42 (Sederberg 12), Ver 48 (Cutright 15). Turnovers - W-M 15, Ver 13. Assists - W-M 9 (Salter, Terjeson 3), Ver 7 (Jiranek 4).