Elma has a worse week than Monte

The new year couldn’t begin soon enough for area boys basketball teams. In four games played between the Montesano and Elma squads, only Montesano came back with a victory.

Bellevue Christian 72, Montesano 71

Bellevue Christian forward Ken West’s 3-pointer with less than five seconds to go was the difference as the Montesano boys baskeball team fell to the Vikings 72-71 in the Cloud 9 Christmas Classic on Dec. 27 at Lynden Christian High School.

Montesano (6-5) led by two points with less than 10 seconds remaining in the game, but BC’s 6-foot-7 senior hit a step-back three with 4.8 second left to give the Vikings the one-point lead.

After a Bulldogs timeout, Monte failed to get a shot off in the final seconds of the contest.

“We played a good team and played probably our best game of the season,” Monte head coach Doug Galloway said.

Tanner Nicklas led the Bulldogs in scoring with 17 points. The junior center also grabbed seven rebounds in the contest.

Sam Winter and Evan Bates had 16 points each for the Bulldogs.

Trace Ridgway also scored in double figures for Monte with 12 points.

Montesano 15 15 23 18 — 71

Bellevue Christian 16 14 26 16 — 72

Top Players: Montesano — Nicklas (17 pts., 7 reb., 2 blk.), Winter (16 pts., 4 asst., 2 stl.), Bates (16 pts.), Ridgway (12 pts.).

Montesano 63, Cottage Grove 54

The Montesano boys basketball team rallied from a 17-point halftime deficit to earn a 63-54 comeback victory over Cottage Grove on Dec. 21 at the Seaside Holiday Tournament in Seaside, Oregon.

“It felt like we were sleepwalking. Not much was working for us,” said Bulldogs head coach Doug Galloway, whose team climbed back in the game by outscoring the Lions (0-6 overall) 18-4 in the third quarter. “We started to apply a lot of defensive pressure in the second half and that got us back into the game.

Monte completed the comeback with a 23-11 fourth quarter led by junior guard Sam Winter, who went 4-for-5 from the free-throw line and scored 19 of his game-high 28 points in the second half.

“He just started being more aggressive and taking the ball to the hole a little better,” Galloway said of Winter’s second-half improvement.

In addition to his high-point total, Winter grabbed seven rebounds, distributed six assists and had three steals on the night.

Evan Bates also played a big role in Monte’s comeback. The 6-foot-1 senior scored 17 points and grabbed five rebounds. He also went a perfect 6-for-6 from the free-throw line in the second half.

Bulldogs center Tanner Nicklas had a double-double on the evening, registering 11 points and 10 rebounds.

Monte shot 22-for-66 from the field and hit an impressive 12-of-13 free throws, all of which were in the second half.

Cottage Grove shot 19-for-55 from the field and 11-for-21 from the charity stripe.

Cottage Grove 14 25 4 11 — 54

Montesano 9 13 18 23 — 63

Top Players: Montesano — Winter (28 pts., 7 reb., 6 asst., 3 stl.), Bates (17 pts., 5 reb.), Nicklas (11 pts., 10 reb.).

Tillamook 62, Elma 41

The Elma boys basketball team still is looking for their shooting stroke after a 62-41 loss Dec. 28 to Tillamook at the Seaside Holiday Classic in Astoria, Oregon.

Sam Schneider hit five 3-pointers to keep his team in the game, but his effort wasn’t enough for the Eagles to overcome their slow start.

“Got more shots and turned it over less than the opponent,” Elma coach Jeff Niemi said, “but we just couldn’t get them to fall. They shot 30 foul shots which is way too many.”

Elma will get a break before hosting Hoquiam on Friday at 7 p.m. to open up 1A Evergreen League play

Tillamook 14 15 15 18 – 62

Elma 5 7 16 12 – 41

Top Players: Elma – Schneider (15 pts.)

Astoria 37, Elma 25

Elma couldn’t get shots to fall at Astoria on Dec. 27 in a low-scoring 37-25 loss at the Astoria Holiday Classic.

Elma turned the ball over 12 times but shot 16 percent from the field in the loss.

The Eagles also didn’t have any of its players reach double-digits. Cody Vollan ended up being the leading scorer with nine points and nine rebounds.

“The kids played exactly how we want, just couldn’t buy a bucket,” Niemi said.

Elma 7 3 3 12 — 25

Astoria 10 10 9 8 — 37

Top Players: Elma — Vollan (9 pts., 9 reb.), Carter Jacobson (5 pts., 5 reb), Cobey Moore (5 pts., 5 reb.).