Preliminary wins over the Columbia Wildcats and Homedale Trojans lifted the Wood River High School girls’ varsity basketball team into Saturday’s championship game of the Todays Dentistry tournament in Nampa.
Wood River (5-7) built an 18-12 halftime lead and held off Columbia (3-7) by a 43-40 score on Thursday, and then handled Homedale (1-9) by a 53-34 margin Friday.
Yet 5A Skyview Hawks (5-8) defeated Wood River 38-18 in Saturday’s finale, also staged at Columbia’s gym in Nampa.
Coach Kelsey Barg’s Wolverines put together a solid shooting and rebounding effort in Thursday’s close win over host Columbia.
The Wolverines shot 4-for-6 from 3-point range and out-rebounded Columbia 30-18. Wood River also shot 11-for-20 from the free throw line, outscoring Columbia 11-4 there.
Sophomore Olivia Adams (5 points, 13 rebounds, 1 steal, 2 blocked shots) enjoyed her best performance to date in Thursday’s tourney opener. Junior guard Sayler Peavey (5 rebounds, 3 steals, 1 block) led the scoring with 15 points.
Payson Bennett (8 points, 2 assists, 4 steals, 1 block) and Sammi Brunker (6 points, 2 rebounds, 1 steal) showed strong senior leadership. Others were Lily Hogan (4 points, 2 rebounds), Amy Aranda (5 points, 2 boards) and Grace Parke (2 assists, 2 steals).
No scoring details were available from the Homedale win. Turnovers (34) hurt Wood River’s effort against Skyview.
In the Skyview game, Peavey (6 points, 7 rebounds, 6 teals, 2 assists) topped the scoring. Contributors included Aranda (4 rebounds, 3 steals), Adams (5 boards, 1 block), Hogan (2 points, 3 rebounds) and Natalee Morse (4 boards).
Wood River entertains Kimberly on Wednesday, Jan. 8 and Preston on Saturday, Jan. 11 for matinee games.
Kriesien leads WRHS boys
Playing without leading scorer Johnny Radford (concussion protocol) for two games, the Wood River High School boys’ basketball team went 0-3 at the Todays Dentistry Holiday Classic tourney Thursday through Saturday.
Radford was sidelined during Thursday’s opening game with the Capital Eagles at Columbia High gym. Before leaving, Radford (5 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals) scored 15 in Wood River’s 33-32 loss.
Without its star senior guard, Wood River (3-4) dropped a 48-38 decision to Columbia Friday, and absorbed a 62-39 loss to Fruitland (7-1) Saturday.
Senior Walter Kriesien picked up the scoring slack.
Against Fruitland, Kriesien (5 rebounds, 2 assists, two 3-pointers) scored a team-high 14 points and junior forward Tyler Petersen added a season-best 7 points (one 3-pointer, 2 rebounds). Senior Peter De La Cruz (6 points, 5 boards) also had his best game.
Fruitland out-rebounded Wood River 41-21 and the Wolverines (30% shooting) had 19 turnovers. Other contributors were Brogan Ros (6 points, 3 boards), Isai Mendoza (4 points, 3 rebounds, 3 steals), Davis Ros (2 points), Isaac Esparza (4 boards) and Elias Svennungsen (4 rebounds).
Kriesien (10.3 ppg) tallied a season-best 19 points (4-for-8 3-pointers, 7 rebounds) in the 48-38 setback to Columbia. The Wolverines out-rebounded Columbia 32-22 but struggled with 18 turnovers.
Senior Kade Heitzman (4 points, 9 rebounds, 2 steals) was a force on the boards. Senior Davis Ros (11 points) buried three 3-pointers as Wood River was 7-for-18 from behind the arc. Others were Esparza (4 points, 2 steals), Petersen (4 rebounds) and De La Cruz (3 rebounds).
Heitzman (6 blocks, 3 rebounds, 2 steals, 6 points) played tough in the one-point Capital loss. Chipping in were Davis Ros (7 points, 6 boards), Kriesien (2 points, 5 rebounds), Svennungsen (2 points), Brogan Ros (3 rebounds) and Esparza (3 boards).
Nampa (7-1) won the eight-team boys’ tournament by a 42-39 score over Homedale.
The Wood River boys visit Preston Saturday, Jan. 4 and travel to Gooding on Jan. 7.