Warriors have some fun against CBC

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WALLA WALLA — The Walla Walla Community College men had their way with Columbia Basin Wednesday night.

Case Rada scored a career-high 41 points to lead the Warriors in an 89-50 rout of the shorthanded Hawks in an NWAACC East Region men’s game that saw WWCC hit 18-of-42 (42.9 percent) attempts from beyond the 3-point arc.

NWAACC men’s standings

North

Team League Overall

Edmonds 7 0 17 2

Peninsula 5 2 14 6

Whatcom 5 2 13 6

Bellevue 4 3 12 7

Everett 4 3 11 8

Skagit Valley 2 5 9 11

Shoreline 1 6 3 14

Olympic 0 7 1 15

East

Team League Overall

Big Bend 7 1 18 4

Yakima Valley 5 3 15 7

Spokane 5 3 14 7

Treasure Valley 5 3 11 8

Blue Mountain 4 4 10 10

Walla Walla 4 4 10 10

Wenatchee Valley 2 6 8 13

Columbia Basin 0 8 1 17

West

Team League Overall

Pierce 8 1 16 4

Tacoma 6 2 13 6

Lower Columbia 5 4 7 11

Clark 4 5 11 7

Green River 4 5 12 8

Highline 4 5 9 10

SPS 1 8 4 14

Grays Harbor 1 8 3 15

South

Team League Overall

Lane 5 2 17 4

Chemeketa 5 2 12 6

SW Oregon 5 2 10 6

Mount Hood 3 4 7 12

Portland 3 4 7 12

Umpqua 3 4 6 12

Clackamas 2 5 10 11

Linn-Benton 2 5 6 11

Columbia Basin (1-17, 0-7 East Region) brought just one substitute to the game.

Nevertheless, WWCC coach Jeff Reinland, who saw his team lose by an average of 27 points in its last two games against Spokane and Big Bend, was pleased to be on the other side of a blowout.

“They’ve been playing people tough — tougher than we have, actually,” Reinland said of CBC, which lost to the same schools by an average of 16 points last Wednesday and Saturday. “We’ve had a couple of bad games here against Spokane and Big Bend where we just played awful... So we were expecting a tough game.”

Walla Walla jumped on the Hawks from the get-go, going over, around and through Columbia Basin’s zone defense en route to a 48-26 lead at the break.

Rada, who finished 11-of-18 from 3-point range, hit 7-of-9 in the first half.

He could do no wrong, sinking 3s whether he was off balance, had a hand in his face or was wide open.

Sophomore guard Dylan Radliff joined in the offensive explosion, scoring 21 points on the night on 7-of-17 shooting (5-of-9 from 3) and tallying nine assists.

As a team, the Warriors hit 47.8 percent (32-of-67) from the field.

Reinland credited his team’s production with a change in mentality, among other things.

“We’ve just been focusing on getting these kids to have fun playing some basketball,” Reinland said. “I think you get all hung up on winning games and doing everything right, the coaches get intense, and we just quit having fun there for a while. If we’re not enjoying what we’re doing, there’s no point in doing it.”

That shift in mentality was evident from the beginning, as WWCC made three consecutive 3s to start the game and built an 11-2 lead before a shell-shocked CBC could respond.

“I thought they took the floor and really were more relaxed, and looked like they wanted to have fun playing the game,” Reinland said of his team.

The Warriors cooled slightly after their opening barrage, with CBC pulling to within four, 11-7, at the 14:24 mark of the first.

The teams traded blows to 22-18, Walla Walla, but the Warriors re-engaged warp drive, going on a 23-4 run over the next six minutes behind 12 points from Rada to build an insurmountable 45-22 lead with 2:55 left to go in the half.

Radliff hit a trey as the first half ended and another at the beginning of the second. Rada hit his eighth 3 at the 18-minute mark and Dallas Reich took a Radliff dish to the hole as the Warriors pushed their lead to 30, 56-26, four minutes into the second.

That lead expanded to 41, 80-39, with 7:34 left to play and the Warriors cruised the remainder of the game.

Columbia Basin hit 37.7 percent of their shots from the floor in the loss, but was outrebounded 34-26 and pickpocketed 12 times.

“Basketball is... just such a momentum deal,” Reinland said. “You get it going and it seems like everything is going your way. That’s (other teams getting hot) happened to us a couple of times last week, so we’re just happy to come out and play like we enjoy playing.”

The Warriors improve to 4-4 in East Region play and 10-10 overall with the win.

With just six games left to play before the NWAACC tournament, the Warriors are tied for fifth place with Blue Mountain in the jumbled East.

Three different teams, Yakima Valley, Spokane and Treasure Valley, are tied for second in the region at 5-3, meaning the Warriors are still within range of making the tournament, which takes the top four teams from each region.

But with games against TVCC, YVCC, Spokane, Big Bend and BMCC on the horizon, each game is now critical to the Warriors’ tournament hopes.

“We dug ourselves a little hole by losing at home to Yakima and Spokane,” Reinland said. “We needed to win at least one of those games. Now it puts us in a position like tonight, where we had to win this game.

“And that’s what impresses me about our guys,” he said. “Everybody knew that this was a game that we had to win, and we’d been struggling with that urgency. Tonight they came out and just put all that on the backburner and said let’s just go out and play basketball and have fun.”

Walla Walla will hope to let the good times roll when it hosts Treasure Valley Saturday at 4 p.m.

WALLA WALLA 89, COLUMBIA BASIN 50

COLUMBIA BASIN (50) — Ronquillo 3-13 0-0 6, Harrell 4-7 0-0 9, Mahoney 2-4 3-4 7, Dewitt 5-17 2-2 14, Crandall 1-2 0-0 3, Corrigan 5-10 1-2 11. Totals 20-53 6-8 50.

WALLA WALLA (89) — Radliff 7-17 2-2 21, Rada 14-21 2-2 41, Mills 1-2 0-0 2, Reich 2-5 2-2 7, Hahn 3-5 1-2 7, Nooner 1-2 0-0 2, Scharf 2-3 0-0 4. Totals 32-67 7-8 89.

Halftime — WWCC 48-26. 3-point goals — CBC 4-17 (Harrell, Dewitt 2, Crandall), WWCC 18-42 (Radliff 5, Rada 11, Reich, Harr). Total fouls — CBC 11, WWCC 14. Fouled out — none. Technical fouls — none. Rebounding — CBC 26 (Corrigan 7), WWCC 34 (Radliff 6, Nooner 6). Turnovers — CBC 18, WWCC 10. Assists — CBC 6 (Dewitt 3), WWCC 21 (Radliff 9).

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