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BOYS BASKETBALL: Vranes rallies Crater

EUGENE — With scoring leader Nate Bittle in foul trouble for the Crater Comets, teammate Jayden Vranes filled the void in a 49-45 come-from-behind victory against North Eugene in Midwestern League boys basketball Friday.

Vranes scored seven of his team-best 15 points in the fourth quarter to help rally the Comets (12-6, 6-3 MWL). Vranes made the most of his opportunities in the game — going 4-for-5 from the field and converting 7 of 8 from the foul line. The junior guard also contributed five steals and five assists.

Bittle, the Comets’ 6-foot-10 sophomore forward, finished with nine points, 10 rebounds and three blocks.

Crater led 29-25 at halftime, but Bittle was forced to the bench when he picked up his fourth foul late in the third quater. North Eugene (7-11, 4-6) seized the opportunity and surged ahead 39-37 going into the final stanza.

“(Vranes) was aggressive when Nate had to go out,” said Crater coach Chris Schmerbach. “He took care of the basketball and did a good job controlling the game.”

Comet senior Nathan Johnson scored 10 points, including two free throws in the waning seconds for the final margin of victory.

“It was a gritty win,” said Schmerbach. “We stuck with it and made quality decisions and good basketball plays down the stretch.”

CRATER (49): Vranes 15, Ray 4, Horton 8, Chubb 2, Eaton 0, Edwards 5, Johnson 10, Bittle 9. Totals: 15 16-23 49.

NORTH EUGENE (45): Pratt 2, DeGarmo 3, Rankin 3, Wallace 0, Duke 13, Parker 20, Cross 0, Richardson 4. Totals: 16 8-10 45.

Crater209812— 49

North Eugene169146— 45

3-point goals — Crater 3 (Horton 2, Johnson 1), North Eugene 5 (DeGarmo 1, Rankin 1, Duke 3).

CHURCHILL 99, ASHLAND 59: At Eugene, Churchill, the No. 1-ranked team in Class 5A, showed off its offensive firepower from start to finish, hitting 13 3-pointers on its way to a blowout Midwestern League win.

Six different players scored in double figures for Churchill (16-3, 11-0 MWL), which held a 55-31 lead at halftime.

Brian Goracke finished with a game-high 23 points — 16 of which came in the first half — and hit three 3-pointers. Kaelan O’Neil and Samaje Morgan had 16 and 12 points, respectively, while Ejim Akuma III, Silas Bennion and Isaiah Wallace all added 11 points, the latter two also hitting three treys in the win.

KJ Pippa, in his third game back from injury, finished with a team-high 17 points for Ashland (6-11, 2-8). Joseph Wallner-Sentle and Logan Sanford both added nine points.

ASHLAND (59): Pippa 17, Smith 2, Wallner-Sentle 9, Ekwall 0, Sanford 9, Saulsbury 6, Swenson 2, Sayre 4, Desmond 5, Harris 3. Totals: 22 8-16 59.

CHURCHILL (99): Akuma III 11, Bennion 11, Wallace 11, Morgan 12, Murphy 0, Vasbinder 0, Tofte 0, O’Neil 16, Pia 2, Goracke 23, Case 6, Carson 6. Totals: 37 11-16 99.

Ashland15161414— 59

Churchill27282519— 99

3-point goals — Ashland 5 (Pippa 1, Wallner-Sentle 1, Saulsbury 2, Harris 1), Churchill 13 (Akuma III 1, Bennion 3, Wallace 3, Morgan 1, Goracke 3, O’Neil 2).

WILLAMETTE 70, EAGLE POINT 33: At Eugene, Owen Cross hit four 3-pointers on his way to 18 points as host Willamette (14-4, 9-2 MWL) jumped out to a 40-18 lead en route to the Midwestern League win.

Logan Esquibel scored 15 points and Hayden Neyt nine for Eagle Point (2-16, 0-11), which suffered its 13th straight loss.

EAGLE POINT (33): McHugh 1, Shaffer 1, Neyt 9, Gelbrich 5, Esquibel 15, Gorman 2, Kendrick 0, McGarrell 0, Rodriguez 0, Aguilar 0. Totals: 12 8-10 33.

WILLAMETTE (70): Culver 10, Woods 4, Cross 18, L. Burke 7, J. Smith 2, Puckett 6, L. Smith 15, Curtis 6, C. Burke 2. Totals: 29 6-13 70.

Eagle Point108114— 33

Willamette25151911— 70

3-point goals — Eagle Point 1 (Neyt 1), Willamette 6 (Cross 4, L. Burke 1, L. Smith 1).

PHOENIX 71, HIDDEN VALLEY 45: At Phoenix, Nico Ortega hit five 3-pointers on his way to 17 points, Ethan Hutsell scored 22 and host Phoenix outscored Hidden Valley by 23 points in the middle two quarters to blow open the Skyline Conference game.

Braeden Watts added 10 points for Phoenix (10-9, 1-4 Skyline), which snapped a six-game losing streak.

Jeremiah Noga scored 13 points for Hidden Valley (11-7, 2-3), which struggled at the free-throw line, going 4-for-18.

HIDDEN VALLEY (45): Tanner 2, Harry 4, Burchfield 2, McLean 3, Noga 13, Byrd 7, Blanton 6, Wright 3, Hagerty 2, Iwamizu 3. Totals: 19 4-18 45.

PHOENIX (71): Serna 5, Stanfield 4, Jenkins 3, Watts 10, Ortega 17, Goff 4, Stella 6, Hutsell 22, Martinez 0, Mendez 0, Beer 0, Tuenge 0, Clayton 0. Totals: 28 7-10 71.

Hidden Valley137916— 45

Phoenix11192417— 71

3-point goals — Hidden Valley 3 (Noga 2, Byrd 1), Phoenix 8 (Jenkins 1, Watts 2, Ortega 5); Fouled out — Stella.

JV result — Hidden Valley won.

ST. MARY’S 88, DOUGLAS 52: At Winston, Trevahn Foster scored 20 points to pace St. Mary’s, which had one of its best shooting nights of the campaign on its way to a season-high in points in the Far West League victory.

Foster went for eight rebounds and six blocks as well for the Crusaders (11-10, 5-2 FWL), while Aliiloa Kaeo-Wailehua dropped in 12 points — all in the first half — and Gavin Rajagopal pitched in 11.

The Crusaders, who shot 56 percent from the field on 36 of 64 shooting and had a 38-23 advantage on the glass, also picked up eight points and seven boards from Francis Okeyia.

ST. MARY’S (88): Hristov 9, Kaeo-Wailehua 12, Young 0, Banton 4, Okeyia 8, Conner 2, Reynolds 9, Hadley 2, Rajagopal 11, Sternenberg 4, Snyder 7, Foster 20. Totals: 36 11-24 88.

DOUGLAS (52): Chapman 0, Ledbetter 3, Hoque 8, Silvaz 0, Edwards 19, Jones 0, West 3, Fowler 8, Schofield 10. Totals: 19 8-16 52.

St. Mary’s23272315— 88

Douglas927106— 53

3-point goals — St. Mary’s 5 (Hristov 3, Kaeo-Wailehua 2), Douglas 6 (Hoque 1, Edwards 2, West 1, Schofield 2).

CASCADE CHRISTIAN 57, SOUTH UMPQUA 50: At Myrtle Creek, sophomore guard Donminic Lewis scored 11 of his game-high 19 points in the opening quarter as Cascade Christian got off to a fast start then held off host South Umpqua late in the Far West League road victory.

After trailing 34-24 at halftime, South Umpqua (2-19, 1-7 FWL) cut the margin to four points entering the fourth quarter but the Challengers never relinquinshed the lead.

Levi Sciapiti, a sophomore guard, contributed 11 points and Nathan Spurlock chipped in nine for Cascade Christian (6-15, 4-3).

CASCADE CHRISTIAN (57): Reece 0, Sciapiti 11, Schaan 6, Jackson 0, Coppedge 1, Lewis 19, Collom 8, Sample 0, Spurlock 9, Brehm 0, Flenner 3. Totals: 20 11-23 57.

SOUTH UMPQUA (50): Johnson 9, Thatcher 15, Lamm 12, Chung 0, Wilson 6, Deister 0, Lee 6, Roberts 2. Totals: 18 8-11 50.

Cascade Christian16181310— 57

South Umpqua1014197— 50

3-point goals — Cascade Christian 6 (Schaan 1, Lewis 3, Collom 1, Flenner 1), South Umpqua 6 (Johnson 2, Thatcher 3, Lee 1).

JV result — South Umpqua won.

ROGUE RIVER 66, CANYONVILLE ACADEMY 51: At Canyonville, Rogue River senior Aiden Norris paced a balanced attack with 14 points in the Southern Cascade League victory.

Justin Cook scored 13 points and Diego Agosto added 12 for the Chieftains (9-10, 3-6 SCL), who went up 22-3 through one quarter against Canyonville Academy (4-12, 0-8).

HOSANNA CHRISTIAN 81, PROSPECT 21: At Klamath Falls, Prospect remained winless in Mountain Valley League play, dropping to 0-12 in league and 1-19 overall.

Hosanna Christian improved to 14-7 overall and 9-5 in MVL play.

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