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Grizzlies' comeback attempt falls short against Mazama

A year after suffering a demoralizing 30-point loss to Mazama, the Ashland High girls basketball team had a chance to win in the closing minutes on Thursday before going down 44-39 in the first round of the Crater Basketball Invitational at Scenic Middle School in Central Point.

Ashland fought back from a 36-24 deficit through three quarters to take a short-lived lead in the fourth and was within a point with three minutes to go when Mazama’s Amber Lease drilled a key shot to help the Vikings stay in front. Lease finished with 17 points and Hannah Thompson 15 to lead Mazama (2-0), which also has a win over North Medford under its belt.

“I was really happy with our girls’ performance tonight,” Ashland coach Ashley Hafner said. “They were really disciplined, they were focused and the played great defense. We made adjustments and competed when it mattered most.”

Senior guard Georgia Williams scored 11 of her game-high 20 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Grizzlies’ comeback, and senior post Michaela Dunn added 11. Senior post Sierra Webster scored all four of her points in the final frame for Ashland (2-2), which has a bye tomorrow and will play an opponent yet to be determined in the final day of the tournament Saturday.

ASHLAND (39) – Williams 20, Altig 0, Honeycutt 0, Teixeira 0, Dunn 11, Webster 4, Sukles 2, Read 2, Rooney 0, Brookins 0. Totals: 12 13-21 39.

MAZAMA (44) – Smith 2, Thompson 15, Jenar 2, Lease 17, Paschal 6, Benson 2, DelaRosa 0, Williams 0. Totals: 15 8-10 44.

Ashland 8 10 6 15 – 39

Mazama 12 16 8 8 – 44

3-point goals – Ashland 2 (Williams 2), Mazama 6 (Thompson 3, Lease 3). Fouled out – Benson.

Boys Basketball

At Central Point, Walker Shibley-Styer scored 20 points and Collin Malcolm added 12, including a monster and-one dunk in the Grizzlies’ 26-point fourth quarter as Ashland derailed Cascade Christian 56-38 in the first round of the Crater Basketball Invitational.

The Challengers were within striking distance before Ashland’s full-court press, spearheaded by Jeremiah Hasskamp and Stenley Graham, broke the game open and gave the Grizzlies (3-1) their most lopsided win of the season.

“(Shibley-Styer) was solid all game long, but what really sparked the fourth-quarter run was the full-court defensive pressure,” Ashland coach Keithan Gregg said. “They just picked it up defensively.”

Christian Kammerzell scored 11 and Jason Wyncoop 10 to pace the Challengers (1-1).

Ashland will face Ridgeview in the semifinals today at 4:30 p.m., at Crater High School.

Gregg said he’s pleased with Ashland’s growth on offense.

“We were patient with the offense and started to actually run some of our stuff,” he said. “They’re trying to figure out concepts and slowed down in that second half and really started looking for each other.”

ASHLAND (56) – Shibley-Styer 20, Malcolm 12, Hasskamp 5, Pippa 5, Feinberg 4, Ellis 4, Kennedy 3, Graham 3, Jones, Edson 0, Scott 0.

CASCADE CHRISTIAN (38) – Kammerzell 11, Wyncoop 10, Cochran 6, Olson 4, Winter 3, Wager 2, Morris 2.

Ashland 15 8 6 26 – 56

Cascade Christian 8 5 12 13 – 38

3-point goals – Ashland 7 (Shibley-Styer 4, Hasskamp 1, Graham 1, Kennedy 1), Cascade Christian 1 (Kammerzell 1). Fouled out – Ellis. Technical foul – Ashland coach Keithan Gregg.