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By Steve Tool

Wallowa County Chieftain

Published on December 20, 2017 9:01AM

Both Enterprise basketball teams hit the western trail for a stopover at the Rocket Invite tournament in Pilot Rock on Dec. 15-16.

The boys continued their doldrums, dropping two games to Pilot Rock and McLoughlin respectively. The girls added to their sterling reputation defeating the same two teams and extending their winning streak to five games.

The ladies squeaked by Pilot Rock in Friday’s contest, 38-34, while the following day saw the Outlaws participate in a literal massacre, thumping McLoughlin 59-29.

The ladies had a tough fight against Pilot Rock, but evenly spread scoring, led by Karli Bedard’s nine points, followed by seven each from Ashley Exon and Ashlyn Gray helped seal the deal for the Outlaws.

Coach Mike Crawford said the Pilot Rock game was interesting because they’ve been the Outlaws’ nemesis for many years.

“This was a game pretty evenly played,” Crawford said. “We didn’t play our best basketball, but we played well enough through the adversity to win it.”

The McCloughlin game saw the Outlaws visiting destruction on the heads of the pioneers.

“We played much better basketball that day,” Crawford said. “It was a good win to head into next week’s game against Pilot Rock at home.”

The wins saw the ladies ranked fourth in the state with a 7-1 record. They next play Pilot Rock at home on Dec. 22 at 6 p.m.

Illness and injuries kept the boys away from the winners circle in both games. Friday’s game saw the boys surrendering to Pilot Rock with a 52-37 loss that left coach Larry Wells smarting.

“It was a game that we weren’t up to playing,” Wells said. “We didn’t execute our offense, and we had a lot of turnovers.”

The coach said many team members are recovering from the winter flu and point guard Trent Walker is recovering from a tonsillectomy.

Once again, the Outlaws failed to break a 2-3 zone until late in the game. The team was 3 of 6 from the foul line while the Rockets were 24 for 35.

“We were in foul trouble early,” he said. “We had to drop our press and were effectively removed from the game.”

Wells pointed to the 11-point performance of Dylan Marr as one of the few bright spots. Walker fill-in Justus Even and Rylie Hayward knocked in eight points.

McLoughlin proved another loss but had more bright spots and a dark note: The probable season loss of junior Riley Masters who suffered a severe concussion while stumbling and falling during a lay-in attempt after forcing a turnover.

The injury stopped the game for nearly 40 minutes and he was taken by ambulance to the hospital for observation. He is recovering at home.

“We were in it until the end, and we were up by 12 points early the fourth quarter,” Wells said. “Then we went into a slump.”

Overall, Wells thought the team played well, with good defense and some noteworthy offensive performances. Jimmy Wells raked in 12 points as did Brett Greenshields at the post. Marr contributed seven. Starter Chris Bathke didn’t play because of illness.

The losses were the fourth straight for the Outlaws. The team sports a 3-5 record and hosts Pilot Rock on Friday, Dec. 22 at 7:30 p.m.


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