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Crusaders come up short at 2A tournament

PENDLETON — Until the St. Mary's girls basketball team was able to shake the playoff jitters, it seemed to have no hope of advancing from the quarterfinals of the Class 2A state tournament on Wednesday.

The Crusaders totaled just six points in the first half and faced a 10-point deficit, but came roaring back, making shot after shot.

But with 17 seconds to play, Kylee Eden hit a go-ahead jumper for Kennedy, which came away with a 35-33 victory over the resurgent Crusaders.

"Oh yeah, we had a really rough first half," said Crusaders assistant coach Jolyn Marshall. "We were playing really hard, but were tentative on offense. We passed up a lot of open opportunities."

The Crusaders (21-5) will take on Glendale at 10:45 this morning in the consolation bracket for a chance to take fourth place in the state tournament.

St. Mary's came alive in the final two minutes of the third quarter with a 7-0 run, highlighted by Domonique Valdez's deep 3-pointer. The spurt cut the Crusader deficit to two.

"It's huge that she's willing to take that kind of a shot as a freshman in a playoff game," said Marshall.

Veronica Valdez led the Crusaders' balanced attack with eight points and added five rebounds, while Nikki Steinsiek added seven points.

"Our goal right now is to come home with a fourth-place trophy," said Marshall. "We're a young team, so I think that would be huge."

KENNEDY (35) — Eder 7, Bochsler 5, Hettwer 9, Fleck 10, Halter 2, Donohue 0, Dye 2, Wavra 0. Totals: 14-37 3-5 35.

ST. MARY'S (33) — W. Adderson 2, Steinsiek 7, K. Adderson 0, Bates 2, D. Valdez 3, Bladek 1, Street 0, Williams 5, Carini 3, V. Valdez 8, Picknell 0. Totals: 14-41 2-7 33.

Kennedy 11 5 8 11 — 35

St. Mary's 5 1 14 13 — 33

3-point goals — Kennedy 4 (Hettwer 2, Eder 1, Bochsler 1), St. Mary's 3 (Steinsiek 1, Williams, D. Valdez 1).