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Jan. 29, 2023

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Boys basketball: Union 73, Battle Ground 72

The Columbian
Published:

The top-ranked team in Class 4A got all it could handle from an insprired Battle Ground squad.

Union remained undefeated, barely. The Titans beat the Tigers 73-72 after trailing for much of the 4A Greater St. Helens League game Tuesday at Batttle Ground High.

Union (18-0, 6-0) overcame a four-point deficit in the final 10 seconds.

Mason Hill, who had 26 points, hit a 3-pointer to cut Battle Ground’s lead to 72-71. Battle Ground then missed the first end of a one-and-one after the Titans fouled.

After a timeout, the Titans got the ball to Ariya Briscoe for a go-ahead lay-in with two seconds left.

Battle Ground had a good look at the buzzer. Nate Millspaugh’s inbounds pass from the opposite baseline found Kaden Perry at the top of the key. He quickly passed to Brendan Beall for on open 3-point attempt which was off the mark.

Perry finished with 28 points and 21 rebounds. Millspaugh scored 14 points and Beall added 11 for Battle Ground (9-8, 3-2).

“We played them really tough,” said Battle Ground coach Manny Melo, who coached the game wearing a Kobe Bryant jersey. “They’re the No. 1 team in the state for a reason. We’ve had our ups and downs, but we’ve really dialed in during league play. I’m super proud of them.”

Tanner Toolson added 21 points for Union, which lost Brad Lackey to a knee injury in the fourth quarter.

UNION 73, BATTLE GROUND 72

UNION — Brad Lackey 3, Ty McCullum 3, Tanner Toolson 21, Mason Hill 26, Izaiah Vongnath 4, Ariya Briscoe 2, Josh Reznick 2, Kaden Horn 12, Connor Flannigan 0. Totals 25 (11) 12-19 73.

BATTLE GROUND — Bishop Straube 2, Max Ramirez 8, Cole Billingsley 6, Nate Millspaugh 14, Brendan Beall 11, Kaden Perry 28, Brian Weeks 0, Jake Kostman 3. Totals 28 (5) 11-19 72.

Union 15 14 23 21–73

B.Ground 22 15 17 18–72

JV — Union won

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