TACOMA — It can’t win the championship, but the Camas girls basketball team is still playing with two days left in the season.
That’s something the Papermakers can appreciate.
Thursday did not go their way, though.
Moses Lake never trailed in a 46-36 victory in the Class 4A state girls basketball quarterfinals at the Tacoma Dome.
Jessica Olson scored 16 of her 21 points in the first half to lead the Chiefs.
Moses Lake (21-3) will take on Glacier Peak in the semifinals Friday.
Camas (17-9) falls into the consolation bracket and will take on Sunnyside at 2 p.m. Friday in the fourth-place semifinals. The Papermakers need to win Friday to assure themselves a trophy from the state tournament for the first time in program history.
“A lot of teams in Washington would want to be where we are,” said Camas’ Madison Freemon. “We are so fortunate to be here.”
The Papermakers just wish they played better in the quarterfinals, especially in the first half.
The opportunity for a title is gone now after Thursday’s loss.
Olson hit back-to-back 3-pointers to set the tone early in the first quarter for Moses Lake.
“It’s my senior year,” Olson said. “I figure, ‘Just go all out.’ My teammates were finding me, too. A team sticking together really helps a lot.”
The Chiefs just kept pushing, too. The lead grew to 11 after the first quarter and 17 by halftime.
Jamie Loera also had the hot hand early for the Chiefs, with 12 of her 14 in the first half.
“We didn’t have the same mentality as we did yesterday,” said Camas’ Courtney Clemmer, who had a double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds. “We’re going to get together and find that mentality for (Friday). We came in here with the mentality to dominate. Now we have to find that same determination for (Friday).”
This was the second victory for Moses Lake over Camas this season. The Chiefs took a seven-point contest in December.
“It was the same type of game, actually,” Olson said. “We knew some of their strengths and some of their weaknesses.”
To Camas’ credit, the Papermakers never went away in this one.
Clemmer had her strong performance. Teague Schroeder came off the bench to score eight points. Freemon had back-to-back blocked shots, leading the defensive charge that kept the Papermakers within shouting distance, holding the Chiefs to 12 points in the second half.
“It was just our energy. It brought us all together,” Freemon said of the second half that saw the Camas defense hold the Chiefs to two field goals. “The pep talk really helped us. We had to keep it positive. There was a lot of negative energy in that first half.”
Clemmer’s basket midway through the fourth quarter made it an eight-point game.
Moses Lake, though, would make three free throws in the ensuing possessions as Camas’ offense struggled, as well. The Papermakers finished the game shooting 29.5 percent from the floor.
The Papermakers got it to eight again with 37 seconds left, but two free throws from Olson ended the scoring.
Clemmer tried to remain upbeat after the loss.
“There is a first for everything. First time going to the dome. First time winning in the dome,” she said, referring to Wednesday’s win. “Now a first time losing in the dome. A world of firsts this year. But we’re going to make it to the top one day.”
MOSES LAKE 46, CAMAS 36
CAMAS — Jordyn Wilds 1, Meghan Finley 0, Jillian Webb 5, Teague Schroeder 8, Haley Hanson 3, Hannah Booth 0, Marianna Payne 0, Maggie Wells 2, Emma Jones 4, Madison Freemon 2, Courtney Clemmer 11. Totals 13-44 (4-16) 6-13 36.
MOSES LAKE — Jamie Loera 14, Ellie Mayo 3, Kiera McPartland 0, Maggie Srom 2, Mrgan Yamane 0, Taylor Stevens 0, Jessica Olson 21, Alexya Sandman 0, Abby Rathbun 6. Totals 14-36 (6-17) 12-17 46.
Camas 7 10 8 11–36
Moses Lake 18 16 4 8–46