YAKIMA – There’s no doubt Kennedy Hobert and the rest of her White River Hornets teammates were down following their 46-40 loss to East Valley of Yakima in Friday night’s 2A girls state semifinal. But they’re still pleased to be playing basketball today, the final game of the 2011-12 season.
“We’re happy to get this far,” said Hobert, who had a team-high 17 points on 8 of 14 shooting in the loss. “We’re upset, but we’ll be fine (today).”
The Hornets will play game No. 30 of their season today when they face Lynden at 11:15 a.m. in the third/fifth-place game. Win or lose, it will be the program’s highest finish at state since placing third at the Class 3A state tournament in 2000.
“I’m pleased when my kids get to play on the last day of basketball,” White River coach Chris Gibson said. “That’s when Senior Night should be, and that’s what it gets to be for us.”
East Valley used a zone defense against White River to limit the inside touches of Hobert, which in turn meant outside shooting would be critical.
After going 0-for-7 from 3-point range in the first half, White River hit four 3-pointers – two by Sutton Mills and one each from Amanda Lance and Kristin Sturdivan – in the third quarter. Sturdivan’s 3 with 1:08 left in the third quarter gave the Hornets a 34-28 advantage after trailing 20-17 at halftime.
Unfortunately, those were the only 3’s the team made the rest of the game and finished 4 of 19 from long distance.
“We knew we were going to have to hit some 3’s,” Gibson said. “That’s what you have to do. At the same time, you have to be careful with that. We wanted to get the ball inside, and they (East Valley) did a nice job of taking things away.”
East Valley went 15 of 20 from the free throw line, and used a 14-4 run to take a 42-38 lead with 47.4 seconds left in the game. In all, the Red Devils hit 8 of 9 from the line in the fourth quarter.
Meg Wochnick: 360-754-5473 firstname.lastname@example.org