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Kelso girls fend off Martin, Hudson’s Bay in tiebreaker game

Hilanders earn home game, 3A GSHL's No. 2 seed

By , Columbian sports reporter
4 Photos
Kelso celebrates their win over Hudson’s Bay during a game at Mountain View High School on Friday night, Feb. 7, 2020.
Kelso celebrates their win over Hudson’s Bay during a game at Mountain View High School on Friday night, Feb. 7, 2020. (Nathan Howard/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

A heated rivalry has started brewing between Hudson’s Bay and Kelso girls basketball the past two years. In a 3A Greater St. Helens League tiebreaker game Friday night, it reached its boiling point.

Kelso held off a late charge from Hudson’s Bay, earning a 52-49 win to earn the second seed into next week’s 3A West Central/Southwest Bi-District Tournament.

The Hilanders (14-7), until the past two weeks, were on the wrong end of the youth-laden meetings. An influx of young stars or the growth off budding ones highlighted the rivalry. Before Kelso’s 59-58 win on Jan. 24, the Eagles (15-6) had taken six straight. Friday’s victory is a testament to how far the Hilanders have come.

“You can just see the growth in every single player as we’ve played them,” Kelso sophomore Natalie Fraley said. “We’ve been practicing to push as much as we can to push it past that line where we’re ready for playoffs and ready to take it to the Dome.” 

Fraley had 12 points, nine rebounds and four steals Friday before fouling out with 3 minutes, 5 seconds remaining and her team up 47-41. She was helpless as Bay junior Jaydia Martin tried to pioneer a comeback.

17 Photos
Hudson’s Bay’s Jaydia Martin, left, checks on Kelso’s Natalie Fraley after Fraley was hit in the face on a drive during a game at Mountain View High School on Friday night, Feb. 7, 2020.
Kelso vs Hudson’s Bay Basketball Photo Gallery

Martin scored all 16 of the Eagles’ points in the final frame, finishing with a game-high 27 on the night.

“That’s someone you don’t see every day,” Kelso coach Jen Hamilton said of the Bay star. “She can drive to the basket, square up, shoot from 32 feet. She’s put in a lot of time and she is just tough.” 

A pair of driving buckets by Evermore Kaiser and Erin Tack immediately following Fraley’s exit kept the Eagles charge at bay, and the lead at six points.

“I have so much confidence in my team,” Fraley said. “We each know our roles and we play to that very well.”

Martin responded by drawing two fouls on ensuing possessions and making all four free throws to draw within two, 51-49. Devon Johnson-Brown got a steal with 25 seconds left and Kelso fouled Kamelai Powell with 17 ticks remaining. Powell missed the front end of the 1-and-1, only to see Martin haul in the offensive rebound, one of a team-high 16 boards. But Martin fell to the ground and was called for a travel with 12 seconds left, getting whistled for a technical foul in the process.

Alexis Kleven, who finished with 10 points, made one of her four free throws down the stretch to seal the game.

Kaiser also added 10 points and Cooper Joy hauled in nine rebounds for Kelso, which hosts the winner of Bonney Lake and Timberline on Wednesday.

Aside from Martin’s 27 and 16, the Eagles got production from Kamelai Powell (eight points, 13 rebounds) and Ashley Rodriguez (eight points). Hudson’s Bay will travel to play Wilson (14-6) on Wednesday in the bi-district tournament.


At Mountain View


KELSO (14-7) — Alexis Kleven 10, Cooper JOy 6, Erin Tack 6, Evermore Kaiser 10, Matisyn Ohlson 3, Natalie Fraley 2, Madison Harkins 2, KK Perez 2. Totals 17-57 (4-18) 13-32 52.

HUDSON’S BAY (15-6) — Maria Arroyo 0, Jaydia Martin 27, Ashley Rodriguez 8, Devon Johnson-Brown 0, Paytin Ballard 4, Mahaila Harrison 4, Kamelai Powell 8, Stacia Mikaele 0. Totals18-51 (2-8) 11-13 49.

Kelso 6 16 13 17—52

H. Bay 6 7 18 18—49

Columbian sports reporter

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