PENDLETON — Saturday’s game with Columbia Basin College found the Blue Mountain Community College women playing catch up. They never led but on multiple occasions in the second half, the Timberwolves pulled to within a possession or two.
The Hawks erased any lingering chances for a comeback, though, with at 15-3 run in the game’s final minutes. CBC pulled way out in front at the end for a 69-52 victory in NWAACC East play.
Blue Mountain’s shots became rushed and the ball handlers took a few more risks that would lead to turnovers. The Hawks (6-9, 2-1 NWAACC-E) were right there to capitalize. CBC scored 20 points off turnovers in the victory.
“We need to take more high percentage shots,” Blue Mountain coach Christy Martin said. “You need to be balanced, wait to take some shots when there’s not a hand in your face.”
Blue Mountain shot just 32 percent for the game compared to Columbia Basin’s 46 percent and Martin wasn’t happy with the way her team performed.
“We didn’t deserve to win this game,” she said.
Kim Pickett scored 14 to lead the T-Wolves, but made only 5-of-21 shots, including 1-of-7 from 3-point range. Several of those long balls came during Columbia Basin’s final run as Blue Mountain became more desperate with its shot selection.
Via netted 11 points on 5-of-10 shooting and Hailey Markham-Pattie added 10 more.
But on the other side, Sierra Higheagle and Hannah Depew were helping the Hawks pull away. Higheagle finished with 18 points and the latter ended at 14, both from their guard positions.
Despite holding a height advantage on nearly each matchup for the majority of the game, Columbia Basin would not win the rebounding battle. Blue Mountain edged the visitors 41-39 on the boards, including 11 on the offense end.
The Hawks’ issues in the rebounding game presented a red flag for coach Cheryl Holden, but the overall victory did enough to outweight the negatives. CBC has a young roster with just one sophomore on it and taking a game in hostile BMCC territory has the players with new expectations of themselves.
“It just gives our kids extra confidence, I think, to win like this on the road,” Holden said. “Blue Mountain’s a good team. It’s just really, really hard to win on the road in the East.”
And the road is exactly where BMCC is headed this week. The T-Wolves have stops at Big Bend (12-5, 2-1 NWAACC-E) and Spokane (9-6, 2-1 NWAACC-E) on their schedule with the team in need of a turnaround. Blue Mountain has dropped five of its last six games.