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No. 2 Lynden wears down Columbia River in 2A quarterfinals

Rapids look to rebound quickly to keep trophy hopes alive

By Micah Rice, Columbian Sports Editor
Published: February 29, 2024, 5:22pm
4 Photos
Columbia River's Paige Johnson drives to the basket by Lynden's Kiki York (20) and Columbia River's Marley Myers (3) during a Class 2A girls basketball state quarterfinal game on Thursday, Feb. 29, 2024 in Yakima.
Columbia River's Paige Johnson drives to the basket by Lynden's Kiki York (20) and Columbia River's Marley Myers (3) during a Class 2A girls basketball state quarterfinal game on Thursday, Feb. 29, 2024 in Yakima. (Micah Rice/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

YAKIMA – Columbia River girls basketball coach Tuileisu Anderson told her team not to dwell on their Class 2A state quarterfinal loss to Lynden on Thursday afternoon.

On tap for the evening: Self-care.

“I told the girls to take an ice bath, take care of their bodies, relax, sleep, play cards in bed,” Anderson said. “I really don’t care. Just stay off your legs. Mentally take care of yourself and physically take care of yourself.”

Such are the rigors of the state tournament, where a team like Columbia River could face four tough opponents in as many days at the Yakima Valley SunDome.

After hanging close for a half, the Rapids lost 50-34 to a bigger Lynden team that improved to 25-1 and is the tournament’s No. 2 seed.

To extend their season to Saturday’s trophy round, the No. 8 Rapids must rebound in Friday’s fourth-place semifinal against No. 6 Archbishop Murphy.

Recovery was on Anderson’s mind as soon as Thursday’s game went final. That’s vital for a team who typically sees just six players log a majority of the minutes.

“I think at the end of the day we just got gassed,” Anderson said. “I told them once they leave this locker room we’ve got to move on.”

Anderson said her team’s work-rate, especially on defense, means there’s not much energy left when a game ends. That’s not a big deal when games are spaced out during the regular season, but the state tournament is a different challenge.

“To be gassed like that just shows that they give everything they have,” Anderson said. “I can’t ask for a better group of girls.”

Peyton Dukes scored 16 points, hitting three 3-pointers on 6 for 11 shooting. Dukes fearlessly drove into the interior of Lynden’s defense, where a frontcourt of 6-foot-2 Payton Mills and 6-foot-1 Finley Parcher lurked.

“She’s just a feisty one,” Anderson said of the 5-foot-10 junior. “She’ll get it and look to run through the offense. But if she sees she can take someone, she’s like ‘I’m just gonna go.’”

The Rapids otherwise struggled from the field, going 13 for 40. With no starter taller than 5-foot-10, Columbia River scored just two second-chance points and was outrebounded 40-20.

“We would get defensive stops but weren’t knocking down shots on the offensive end,” Anderson said. “But hats off to them. That’s a really good team and a really good program.”

That frontcourt duo of Mills and Parcher scored 15 and 13 points respectively. Leading 22-19 at halftime, the Lions gradually gained separation and led 38-28 after three quarters.

Lynden then closed out the win on defense, allowing just six points in the fourth quarter.

LYNDEN 50, COLUMBIA RIVER 34

COLUMBIA RIVER (19-8) – Marley Myers 2, Peyton Dukes 16, Camy Drake 0, Paige Johnson 2, Reese Dunning 0, Charmayne Castro 0, Emma Iniguez 9, Annie Morgan 0, Kaya Mirtich 0, Gracie Glavin 5. Totals 13-40 (7-23) 1-3 34.

LYNDEN (25-1) – Mallary Villars 2, Kalanie Newcomb 2, Degitu Bowler 0, Mya VanderYacht 0, Rilanna Newcomb 0, Jules Slayton 0, Rian Stephan 4, Lexi Hermanutz 2, Haylee Koetje 3, Kiki York 8, Finley Parcher 13, Payton Mills 15. Totals 21-51 (1-18) 7-11 50.

Columbia River 6 13 9 6—34

Lynden 11 11 16 12—50

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