The Wallowa Cougar ladies hung on to a tenuous two-point lead with just two minutes to go in the game Dec. 12 with Cove to pull out their first preseason win, 34-32 over leave rival Cove.

“We almost gave it away,” said coach David Howe. “But we hung tough in the last two minutes.”

The two teams kept the score close throughout the game, with the Wallowa Cougars taking the lead in the last few minutes. They led by five points with just 40 seconds to go.

Some risky passing led Howe to call a time out and provide some fervent counseling to his team. Back on the floor, the Cougars kept possession and eked out the win.

The win was the Cougars’ first triumph of the season.

Shanna Rae Tillery scored 13 points and Jamie Johnston had 12 for Wallowa. The Cougars held a 13-8 lead at the half of the low-scoring contest, and the game was tied at 23 after three.

Maggie Frisch had 13 points to lead Cove.

“Our inexperience showed at different points in the game,” Howe said. “However, the girls kept fighting and came away with a win. Jamie Johnston had a good game offensively and defensively in her first game back from a shoulder injury.”

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