Cheney Free Press -

By PAUL DELANEY
Staff Reporter 

Cardinal boys season ends with Grizzly mauling

Newport takes out frustrations in 67-22 win over Medical Lake season

 

February 22, 2018

Paul Delaney

Medical Lake's Jordan Petersen (4) and Matteo Duran (33) defend against Newport's Koa Pancho in their Feb. 14 game, a 67-22 Grizzly win.

A wounded animal can be doubly dangerous and downright ornery out in the wild.

The Newport Grizzlies proved that wounded pride can be just as harmful too, especially on the basketball court after they rolled over the Medical Lake Cardinals 67-22 in a District 7 playoff game played Feb. 14 at West Valley High School in Spokane Valley.

The win for the Northeast A League regular season runners up in the loser-out matchup sent Newport (17-6) on the road where they defeated Omak and earned a trip to the regional round of the state playoffs.

Medical Lake saw its season come to an end with an 11-13 record and head coach Noel Hachtel appeared to still be feeling the pain days later.

"Ooh, that was a rough one," Hachtel said. "I think more of it was they were upset the game prior (by Lakeside 68-66 on Feb. 9) and they just took it out on us."

Things were still within grasp as the first quarter wound down with the Grizzlies leading 11-7. But Newport reeled off 21 consecutive points, and outscored ML 28-6 to lead 44-13 at the half and it was game over.

Derek Steege had 10 points for Medical Lake with Newport's Danny Bradbury leading all scorers with 19 points. Medical Lake, used to shooting about 37 percent from the field on the season, was a miserable 6-for-48 or 12.5 percent.

"You don't win too many games shooting those numbers," Hachtel said. "We've never shot that poorly, even in games that we were beaten badly."

While offering it as a no excuse, Hachtel said that with the fact school had been cancelled due to the snow, routines might have been out of sync. "Who knows, if they go to school we lose by (only) 20 instead of 45," he said.

"It was the shooting, us missing, them making," Hachtel said was one difference.

Rebounding favored Newport by less than 10, but the Grizzlies had the edge on the offensive end, scoring points. "We just got beat in every facet of the game, they took out their frustrations on us," Hachtel said.

While disappointed the season came to an end, Hachtel, in his second season as head coach, put things in some form of perspective. Medical Lake, it turns out, played the fifth most difficult schedule among 1A schools in the state according to Max Preps.

The Cardinals lost to No. 2 RPI Freeman three times, to No. 4 Newport three times, Lakeside once and Cheney once, all of them are headed to the state tournament.

"We lost 13 games, but we lost to some pretty stiff competition," Hachtel said. Add to this a late-season game, and loss against Kellogg which placed third in 3A tournament play in Idaho.

The Cardinals had a senior-rich lineup with seven players seeing their final action in a Medical Lake uniform.

"Unfortunately, the one senior we lost that is going to hurt us the most is Derek (Steege)," Hachtel said. However, "I've been saying this for a long time, his little brother (Sam) is a better shooter than he is," playing junior varsity and putting up some 30-point games.

Other bright spots, Hachtel said, will be juniors-to-be Jordan Petersen and Nick Mason as well as Garren Garza, injured late in the season and who will be a senior.

There's also Alex Stith who got solid varsity minutes late against Newport where he scored some key points and had a number of rebounds.

As last season, Medical Lake will be part of an aggressive off-season schedule of tournaments, but not as busy, Hachtel said. The kids said the summer of 2017 was just a little too intense so it has been dialed back.

Paul Delaney can be reached at pdelaney@cheneyfreepress.com.

 

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