LACEY - River Ridge clinched its fourth consecutive 2A Evergreen Conference boys basketball title and earned the No. 1 seed into next week's district tournament after its 76-67 victory over North Thurston on Thursday night.
The Hawks (10-1) will face North Thurston for the second time in eight days at 7 p.m. Feb. 12 at River Ridge in the opening round of the 2A District IV tournament.
But before that, the Hawks travel to Aberdeen on Monday for the regular-season finale.
Regardless of Monday’s Tumwater-Chehalis result, North Thurston (7-5 EvCo) will be the league’s No. 4 seed into the district tournament.
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Chehalis (7-4) defeated Centralia, 75-66, on Thursday, and also won both games against the Rams this season. Thursday’s game also was the regular-season finale for North Thurston.
A close game in the first half turned into a 20-point lead by River Ridge in the fourth quarter. The Hawks led at halftime, 38-34, and the Rams tied it at 38, but never took the lead.
River Ridge turned up the pace, getting points off the fastbreak and dominating on rebounds, going on a 23-10 run to increase its lead to 75-55 with 2 minutes, 27 seconds left in the game after Rahmel Moton’s jumper.
“The kids stepped up defensively, and kept them out of a rhythm,” River Ridge coach Jeremy Landram said.
Moton led all scorers with 20 points, and Brad Wallace had 19.
Landon Rushton and Matt Reid had 14 points apiece to lead the Rams.
Raymond 52, Northwest Christian 31: Kami Bates had a game-high 20 points for the Navigators (9-9 overall, 6-5 league) , who despite the loss earned the Pacific 2B League’s No. 4 seed.
Foul trouble and rebounding were some difference-makers, Northwest Christian coach Ron Collins said.
The Navigators’ front line of Alison Sowers, Courtney Wagner and Mackenzie Reeves combined for 14 rebounds.