OLYMPIA — Moral victories don’t count in the standings, but how well her team executed against one of the Cascade Collegiate Conference’s top women’s basketball teams was one of the messages Evergreen State College women’s basketball coach Monica Heuer delivered to her team after a 90-83 double-overtime loss to Oregon Tech on Saturday.
Her players’ body posture set the tone for her postgame speech.
“We made sure we left with that,” Heuer said, ‘Sit up, don’t have a defeated posture because you did not play defeated basketball.’”
After trailing for most of regulation, Evergreen (6-8 overall, 2-5 CCC) had the lead in the final 10 seconds of regulation (68-66) on Sammi Clark’s 3-pointer and the first overtime (76-74) on Natasha Trinidad’s turnaround in the lane, only to see OIT hit the tying shot or free throw to extend the game.
“They always had to make the play, whether it was to tie it or to separate (from) us in the end,” Heuer said.
The Owls of Klamath Falls, Ore., rank first in the CCC in scoring defense, allowing their opponents to a league-low 56.7 points per contest. The Geoducks’ 83 points in the most OIT has surrendered this season, and the play of Clark (24 points) and Brittany Gray (19 points, 13 rebounds) was a big reason.
But in the second overtime, fatigue set in for Evergreen as OIT (17-3 overall, 5-3 CCC) outscored Evergreen 17-4. Tess Armstrong, who finished with 14 points, had nine in a row as part of the Owls’ run. Karissa Dixon had a game-high 26 points.
Evergreen was 1-for-5 from the field and committed three turnovers in the second overtime. Four players played 40 or more minutes for the Geoducks, including Clark, who played 50. Clark leads the CCC in minutes per game (36.2).
“By the time you get into second overtime,” Heuer said, “you have to be mentally tough.”
At Evergreen 90, Oregon Tech 87: Jordan Rawls hit two free throws with 28 seconds left to give the Geoducks a six-point lead – the team’s largest of the second half – and Evergreen held off a late rally by the Owls to earn its first conference win.
The Geoducks (2-12 overall, 1-6 CCC) shot 49.2 percent from the field (30-for-61) and had four players in double figures, led by Dre Taylor’s 20 points.
At Northwest Nazarene 80, Saint Martin’s 76: Grayson Moore’s 3-pointer with 44 seconds left broke a 73-all tie to give the Crusaders the lead for good in a Great Northwest Athletic Conference game in Nampa, Idaho.
Ryan Rogers had a game-high 22 points to lead the Saints (5-9, 2-4 GNAC).
Riley Carel and Evan Coulter each had 13 points and had a combined nine assists for Saint Martin’s.
Saint Martin’s 85, at Alaska Anchorage 78: Angela Gelhar’s career-high 36 points led the Saints (10-4, 4-1) to their first win in Anchorage since 2006.
Gelhar, out of Prairie High School, was 9-for-15 shooting from the floor, including 6-for-9 from 3-point range.
Gelhar was 12-for-14 shooting from the free-throw line.Meg Wochnick: 360-754-5473 firstname.lastname@example.org @megwochnick www.theolympian.com/southsoundsports