POLK COUNTY — Dallas got into the Mid-Willamette Conference win column last week.
Central picked up its second league victory, then bowed to a very strong Silverton team.
West Salem had Liberty cancel a game, after the Titans had defeated Newberg to get to 8-1, with six wins in a row.
Perrydale kept winning, taking four games in five days and raising its record to 9-1.
Falls City plucked its second win of the season.
More on the local teams follows:
The Dragons were 3-7, 1-2 MWC going into a scheduled Monday game at home against North Salem.
Also this week, Dallas will battle South Albany on Thursday and Crescent Valley on Monday, both on the road.
Dallas’ first game since Dec. 21 was a 74-44 league loss at home to Silverton, which was ranked No. 5 in Class 5A by the Oregon School Activities Association at the start of this week.
The Dragons came right back to knock off visiting West Albany 66-64. Dallas rallied from 14 points down at halftime.
Key plays and free throws down the stretch made the difference. Senior Ashton Foster had some big plays around the basket to finish the game with 21 points and 13 rebounds. His driving basket with 1:38 remaining pushed the Dragons’ lead to four points.
Seniors Kailyr Gibson and Kobe Braziel tallied 18 and 17 points, respectively.
“We went into halftime and made some adjustments, went to more of a 1-2-2 zone look on defense after playing really poorly defensively in the second quarter,” Dallas coach Jordan Sollman said. “We were also trying to get shots up too quickly.”
The Dragons forced more turnovers in the second half, and back-to-back technicals on the West Albany bench with 1:50 left led to Braziel sinking three of four free throws.
“That was a big win. The kids were stoked,” Sollman said.
The Panthers, who were slated to play Corvallis at home on Monday, will stay home for a Thursday night game against North Salem.
Central was 3-5 overall and 2-1 in league heading into this week.
The Panthers began last week with a 51-46 victory at home over Lebanon.
The score was tied 12-12 in the second quarter, but Central played well late in the half to go to intermission up 27-17.
But Lebanon found its offense in the third quarter, outscoring the Panthers 22-9 to lead 39-36 with one quarter remaining.
Central regained the lead midway through the final quarter and stayed there. Sophomore Matt Quinn had a key rebound basket at the 3:03 mark, sophomore Estaban Chavez sank two free throws nine seconds later, senior Gabe Cirino scored off a rebound with 2:29 remaining, and junior Chase Nelson scored off a spin move with 1:43 left.
Lebanon came back to get within 49-46 with 11.9 seconds to go. Central secured the victory with Chavez dropping two free throws with 8.5 ticks left and Nelson grabbing the rebound of a missed Lebanon 3-point try.
Central’s other game was a 57-18 loss at Silverton. The Foxes dominated from the start.
“They were clicking on all cylinders,” Central coach Dean Sanderson said, “and we’re still getting our feet back under us. So they were ready to go and we weren’t. They took us out of everything we wanted to do.”
The Titans were to open Class 6A Mountain Valley Conference play on Tuesday at McKay. Their second league game will be Friday night at home against McNary, and they’ll visit Sprague on Tuesday.
On Jan. 3, the Titans won 67-39 at home against Newberg, turning up the defense in the second half, when the Tigers were outscored 32-16.
West Salem led 19-12 after one quarter and was never in danger. Newberg shot under 30 percent from the field as “we forced them into difficult shots,” West Salem coach Travis Myers said. “And we rebounded the heck out of the ball.”
Junior guard Tommy Slack and senior post Brooks Ferguson each had six rebounds, with Ferguson scoring a team-high 14 points. Sophomore post Trenton Ferguson had 13 points and six rebounds as well, five on offense.
The Pirates’ upcoming schedule was in flux as of Monday morning due to COVID-19 issues. Coach Brian Domes said three players had tested positive, with minor symptoms, and practices were off until Thursday at the earliest. A Thursday showdown of Class 1A Casco League unbeaten teams, Perrydale and Crosshill Christian, was called off, along with a Saturday game for the Pirates at North Clackamas Christian.
Perrydale was looking to line up a game for Monday, Jan. 17, and looks like it will be able to play a regularly scheduled game on Tuesday at C.S. Lewis Academy/Veritas.
Perrydale was 9-1 overall, 5-0 and league and ranked fourth going into this week.
Last week, Perrydale got off to an 8-0 start in the first 2 ½ minutes at home against Falls City, stretched the lead to 18-5 after one quarter and led 34-11 at halftime en route to the league victory.
Next was an 82-34 victory at Livingstone Adventist Academy, followed by a 47-23 win at home over Jewel and a 43-39 road win versus Alsea.
Trailing by one point in the fourth quarter at Alsea, senior McGuire Perkins hit a 3-pointer with a couple of minutes remaining to give the Pirates the lead.
“Had he not made that shot, they would have tried going four corners” with a hold-the-ball stall, Domes said he heard from the opposing coach after the game.
Junior Kamren Poulson had a three-point play for the Pirates on their next possession, and that was too much for Alsea to overcome.
Poulson finished with 12 points, McGuire had 11, Kaej Hayness scored nine and Brandon Graber had eight.
“So who are you going to pick on?” Domes said of how opposing defenses try to cover the Pirates.
The Mountaineers are away for their next three games — Wednesday at Willamette Valley Christian, Friday at St. Paul and Monday at Alsea.
Last week began for the Mountaineers with a visit to Perrydale and a 55-23 loss.
Falls City then beat Oregon School for the Deaf 59-22 at home before going back on the road and falling 66-38 to Crosshill Christian.
Sophomore point guard Elliot Foust scored 22 points in the win.
Even after the loss to Crosshill, “I was feeling pretty good,” Falls City coach Pat Irving said. “It was probably the happiest I’ve been after a game because I saw a glimmer of the potential.”
Senior center Noah Preston did a ton of work in the Crosshill game, and “he’s starting to get going,” Irving said.
Turnovers continued to be a problem, though.
“If you just took the turnovers away, we’re getting the ball inside,” Irving said.
One factor, he noted, was that the offense doesn’t get to work in practice against the caliber of defenses and defenders it runs into in games.
“They’re not adjusting to the difference yet,” he said. “I’ve got to figure out a way for us not to try to force the ball inside when it’s not open.”