By Rongi Yost
Correspondent 

Outlaws host Holiday Tournament

 

Last updated 1/3/2023 at Noon

JERRY BALDOCK

Menkye Froelich of Sisters scores during a game against Henley.

The boys basketball squad hosted their annual Holiday Tournament Wednesday through Friday, December 28-30, and competed against tough 4A squads from around the state. The girls squad also served up holiday competition (see story, page 4).

In their first match-up on Wednesday, the Outlaws lost 38-47 to the Klamath Union (KU) Pelicans. Sisters struggled to score in the first quarter and Kale Gardner scored their only points in the period off of a transition layup.

Klamath Union was on fire in the second quarter, and shot 83 percent from the field. Landon Scott hit a three-pointer to highlight Sisters’ scoring effort. At the half, the Outlaws trailed 9-25.

The Outlaws clamped down on defense in the third. Jessey Murillo got some good looks at the basket and scored five points, along with Adam Maddox-Castle, who hit a field goal and a triple for five points.

In the final quarter the Outlaws were able to cut the Pelicans’ lead to seven behind three-pointers from Mehkye Froehlich and Gardner. Unfortunately, KU was able to hold the Outlaws from getting any closer and posted the nine-point victory.

Maddox-Castle led the Outlaws with 10 points, and Gardner followed with eight points, seven rebounds, and two steals. Murillo contributed seven points and eight rebounds, and Scott added seven points. Froehlich pitched in with six points and two steals.

Coach Chad Rush said, “This was a game of two halves. In the first half we struggled to do anything offensively and found ourselves down big at the half. But, like I have become accustomed to expect with this team, they did not quit and almost were able to complete the comeback. I loved the offensive and defensive intensity we showed in that second half.”

On Thursday, the Outlaws fell 57-56 to Mazama.

The Outlaws had an outstanding first quarter against the Vikings, as they attacked the basket and hit their outside shots. Gardner scored all nine of his points in the period, including a three-pointer. Scott scored five points and also hit a three. At the close of the first quarter the Outlaws held a comfortable 21-13 lead.

The Vikings ramped up the physicality in the second period and the Outlaws didn’t respond well. Sisters scored only six points in the quarter, while the Vikings put up 15. At the half, the Outlaws were down by one, 27-28.

In the third, the game went back and forth and ended in a 39-39 tie. Diego Silva connected on a long ball from behind the arc and a free-throw to score four points. Murillo also had four points in the quarter.

The final period started much like the third with the score going back and forth. Unfortunately, the Vikings connected on more of their shots down the stretch and the Outlaws had no answer on their end of the floor. Once again, the Outlaws lost by a nine-point margin.

Scott and Gardner both scored nine points in the contest. Murillo had seven points and eight rebounds, Silva scored six, and Froehlich added five.

Rush said, “I was very pleased that we were able to come out from the beginning and knock Mazama back on their heels and take command of the game early. However, in the second quarter we forgot what made us successful and began to take some tough shots. As usual, our kids did not quit and continued to battle against another athletic and physical team. I believe that will help us as we head into league play.”

In their final game of the tourney on Friday, the Outlaws were defeated 56-37 by the Henley Hornets.

The Hornets played a physical style of defense that made it tough for the Outlaws to get any good looks at the basket. Sisters was only able to score seven points in the first quarter.

Sisters showed their grit and determination in the second period as they outscored the Hornets 13-9 and cut the deficit to seven at the half. The Outlaws switched to a 1-3-1 zone defense and forced Henley into multiple turnovers. Gardner led the Outlaws in scoring for the quarter with eight points.

The Outlaws outscored Henley by two in the third and cut the Hornets’ lead to five as teams headed into the final period. Maddox-Castle had a great quarter with six points on three aggressive, tough drives to the basket. Gardner contributed six points as well.

In the final quarter the Outlaws’ only points came from two free-throws, while the Hornets put 16 points on the scoreboard and recorded the win.

Gardner led the team with 19 points. Froehlich contributed seven points and Maddox-Castle tallied six.

Rush said, “In the fourth quarter the Hornets made an offensive adjustment to attack the zone defense that the Outlaws did not figure out in a timely manner. And to make things more difficult, we only scored two points in the quarter. Those two things made for the large margin of defeat.

“I was proud of how we competed with a very talented, physical, and athletic Henley team,” added Rush. “To do that in the third game of a three-day tournament was great to see. I hope that intensity and grittiness from the team will be a great formula when we get to league play next week.”

 

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