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Raiders seeded fourth into postseason with flashy finish

 

Cameron St. Pierre brings the score to 48-46 Waterville, with a layup late in the fourth quarter. - Scott Hunter photos

After trailing Waterville most of the night Thursday in Coulee Dam, the Raiders willed themselves back into the game in the fourth quarter, stunning the Shockers 53-50, and setting Lake Roosevelt up for a fourth-seed finish in league play after a win against Soap Lake.

LR's wins against the Soap Lake Eagles and Waterville Shockers finished up the regular season with a 10-6 win-loss record in the Central Washington 2B League, and an overall record of 10-10.

Top seed in the league is Brewster (16-0, 18-2), second is Oroville (11-5, 13-7), and Tonasket (10-6, 11-9) took the third seed.

LR and Tonasket both finished league play with a 10-6 record. The next determining factor to break a tie is to look at who beat whom during the regular season, in which Tonasket and LR each won one of two games against one another. A number draw, of all things, is what breaks a tie in that situation. At the beginning of the season all the coaches drew numbers, 1-9, with one being the best. LR had drawn a seven and Tonasket a three, thus giving the Tigers the higher seed.

But that technicality likely was not on the minds of fans in the Raider gym Thursday as they watched the team fall behind 13 points in the first quarter, shot after shot bouncing out.

"In the first half we didn't match their intensity," said Raider Head Coach Jeremy Crollard. "I think we were down 13 at half. We had a fiery talk at halftime to get the kids pumped up."

Crollard said they implemented a full-court zone press the rest of the game, and forced an estimated 15 turnovers from the Shockers.

"We sped up the tempo to what we like to do; that's what did it," Crollard said.

The Raiders took the lead in the last minute of the game, when Cameron St. Pierre hit a jumper. The final point of the Raider lead came via Trevor McCraigie off a technical against Waterville, when, with 2.8 seconds on the clock, a Shocker about to inbound the ball from the sidelines called a timeout when the team had none left.

St. Pierre finished the game with 16 points. McCraigie added 12. Soren Marchand scored eight in the first half, and Adam George added eight in the second half.

Hosting the Eagles on Feb. 3, the Raiders pulled off a solid win with a final score of 63-40.

The Eagles were playing with only six of their varsity players, Crollard explained, with a couple of their other players quitting in the past week.

Trevor McCraigie shoots for two Thursday.

The Raiders were up by 12 at the start of the fourth quarter. "I had my starters in, built the lead up to 20, then I put in all my subs," Crollard said. "I've been giving the younger guys more experience so that they feel confident in the playoffs."

Player highlights include Marchand scoring 17 points for the day and Hunter Whitelaw, who contributed 10 points and 12 rebounds.

The number-four Raiders move on to district play, where they will face off against the number-five seed from the 2B Eastern Washington league, Walla Walla Valley Academy, in Grandview on Friday, Feb. 9 at 2:30 p.m.

The loser of that game will be eliminated and the winner will move on to play at 7:45 p.m. on Feb. 10.

Both the winner and losers of the second game will move on.

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