IRRIGON — A win that cemented Weston-McEwen into the fourth-place spot in the Blue Mountain Conference left Irrigon’s postseason hopes crumbling Saturday.
After losing to the overpowering rebounding of the TigerScots 64-49, the Knights got worse news from Elgin. The Huskies victory bumped Irrigon (12-11, 5-9 BMC) from the final spot in the Blue Mountain Conference’s girls’ basketball district tournament next weekend in Pendleton.
The Knights dropped their final six games of the season — including two to Elgin by a total of six points.
“I don’t think anything changed, we just play in a really tough league,” Irrigon coach Stuart Dick said of his team’s slide. The bounces in the team’s favor in the early season, when they were 12-5, evened out by going the other way recently.
Molly von Borstel rebounded 20 basketballs alone — 11 offensively — while also scoring 15 points to lead the TigerScots. Makayla Christopher also had a double-digit rebounding night with 10.
“(Irrigon) has a pretty fast team so we knew we had to get out in front of them to box them out and close them out,” von Borstel said. The TigerScots don’t play with much size — no major minute player over 5-foot-8 — so speed was imperative, she added.
Tessa McLauhlin led Irrigon with 13 points and Celina Munoz added 12 more.
By securing the fourth spot in the tournament, which starts this Friday, The TigerScots set a date with Pilot Rock. The teams split a pair of games this season.
Coach Amber Doremus said she’s feeling more confident about Weston-McEwen’s chances at the tournament after a pair of wins this weekend. The team has struggled to find the groove it had clicked into earlier this season.
“When that ice storm came, it just took us out of rhythm,” she said, referencing the weather that forced the postponement of two games in January. “It was pretty unexplainable, but I’m glad we’re back.”