Vale’s Rachel Wolfe (No. 23) battles for a rebound with a Umatilla player during first half action of their game Saturday night. (The Enterprise/Pat Caldwell)
VALE – Matyson Siddoway scored 18 points and Emersyn Johnson added 14 to help blast the Vale girls basketball team past Umatilla, 54-27, last Saturday night in an Eastern Oregon League contest.
Friday night the Lady Vikings beat Riverside 35-14.
Vale entered this week at 8-0 in league play.
Against Umatilla, defense and a disciplined and balanced offensive attack paid dividends for the Vikings. They staked out an early 14-5 lead after the first quarter and never looked back.
“We are in a good spot defensively,” said Vale coach Jason Johnson.
Umatilla coach McKenzie Davis said her team (2-6) was just “flat-footed.”
“We were just not very disciplined on the court and they did a good job defensively,” said Davis.
Taylor Durfey paced Umatilla with 13 points.
The Lady Vikings built a 27-13 advantage at halftime and had a big second half to put the game on ice.
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Vale led 34-20 at the end of the third stanza, and clinched the win with key outside shooting from Siddoway and Johnson in the fourth.
Johnson’s 3-point jumper with 4:05 to go put the home team ahead 46-25 and Siddoway’s lay-in with 2:21 pushed Vale’s lead to 50-25.
“We just came out knowing we had to play with a lot of energy,” said Siddoway.
While the victory looked lopsided, she said all late-season games take on a special significance.
“The wins are really starting to matter now,” said Siddoway.
Johnson said the team’s balance is the key to its success.
“It’s a team. We don’t have just one kid we can rely on,” said Johnson.
Umatilla utilized a full court press most of the night, but Vale was usually able to slice through it, which was no surprise to Siddoway.
“We have three or four people that can handle the ball really well,” she said.
As the season winds down, Vale faces some tough foes.
Tuesday night, past press time, the Vikings faced Nyssa (5-3). They host Baker on Thursday and then Burns (7-1) Saturday. The Baker game is a non-league contest.
Burns now holds down second place in EOL standings but Vale defeated the Hilanders in Burns 36-32 Jan. 16.
Sierra Cleaver (No. 15) pulls up for a jump shot whle Umatilla’s Taylor Durfey tries for the block during their game Saturday in Vale. (The Enterprise/Pat Caldwell)
Have a news tip? Contact reporter Pat Caldwell at [email protected] or 541-473-3377.
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