Crater nearly completes comeback in 5A quarters
Facing one of the best defenses in the state Wednesday night, Crater head coach Brian Broaddus knew his team would have to be efficient with the good looks they did get.
But after falling behind Wilsonville early, the hill was just a little too tough to climb.
Crater’s offense battled but ultimately couldn’t complete a fourth-quarter comeback bid after trailing nearly start to finish, as the sixth-seeded Comets fell 64-58 to No. 3 Wilsonville in the quarterfinals of the Class 5A boys basketball state tournament at Gill Coliseum in Corvallis.
“This is just the story of our season,” said Crater head coach Brian Broaddus. “We’ve had this about five times — mount a furious comeback and come up just a little short.”
The Wildcats (25-2) came into Wednesday’s quarterfinal matchup allowing just 36 points per game, and they were able to flex their defensive muscle once again against the Comets (21-6) in the opening three quarters.
Crater will face the loser of the final quarterfinal matchup of the night between Midwestern League foes No. 7 Eagle Point and No. 2 Churchill in a consolation bracket matchup at 10:45 a.m. this morning. The final score of the Eagle Point-Churchill game was not available as of press time.
Wilsonville, which has made five consecutive state final appearances, will face the Eagle Point-Churchill winner in Friday’s state semifinals.
The Wildcats led by as many as 14 midway through the third quarter, with Crater knocking it down to single digits with 2:37 to go in the game.
That’s when the Comets’ late surge began, with a 3-pointer by Tate Broesder making it 57-50. Layups on back-to-back possessions by Colton Vranes and Kadin Price cut the deficit to six points, 60-54, with 48 seconds to go.
It got even tighter, as Price split a pair of free throws and Caden Lasater made his fourth 3-pointer of the night to suddenly make it a one-possession game, 60-58, with 35 seconds to go.
But that ultimately was as close as the Comets got, with the Wildcats getting it done from the free-throw line in the waning seconds.
Crater outscored Wilsonville 30-23 in the fourth quarter, giving the Comets more points in the final period (30) than they had combined over the first three quarters (28).
“We went into a fullcourt press, obviously, and even in the halfcourt we were trapping more,” said Broaddus of the fourth-quarter changes. “Offensively, we either wanted a bucket at the rim or a kick and a 3-point attempt. We wanted no more than two passes and we were trying to score quickly without using much time.”
Lasater led the Comets with 14 points, while Broesder had 13 and Price chipped in 11 and Javon Smith added nine. Logan Price, scored 33 points in Crater’s opening-round win over Corvallis last Friday, was held to five points but pulled down a game-high 10 rebounds.
All five Wilsonville starters scored in double figures, led by 6-foot-7 post Tristan Davis and Kallen Gutridge each scoring 13. Maxim Wu finished with 12 points, while 6-foot-10 senior Logan Thebiay and Enzo Chimienti each had 11 points.
Davis and Thebiay both fouled out during the fourth quarter, with the Wildcats’ presence inside drastically limited after both exited the game.
Crater held the lead for all of 20 seconds in the first half, with Smith hitting a corner 3-pointer to put the Comets ahead 3-2.
But that turned out to be in the midst of a 14-5 Wilsonville run to start the game, with Davis scoring eight of those points, including a pair of 3s of his own.
The Comets chipped away at the deficit, getting as close as 19-17 after a Lasater 3-pointer and a Broesder basket in the paint on back-to-back possessions.
The Wildcats, however, closed the half on a 10-5 run to take a 29-22 lead into the break.
“Wilsonville is too tough if they have the lead,” said Broaddus. “They milk the clock, milk the clock, milk the clock. ... Wilsonville doesn’t beat themselves.”
Caden Lasater 4-8 2-6 14, Tate Broesder 5-13 0-1 13, Kadin Price 3-6 5-5 11, Javon Smith 2-7 3-4 9, Logan Price 2-8 1-3 5, Colton Vranes 2-8 0-0 4, Marcus Idiart 0-0 2-2 2. Totals: 18-50 13-21 58.
Kallen Gutridge 5-13 3-4 13, Tristan Davis 4-5 3-5 13, Maxim Wu 4-4 3-4 12, Enzo Chimienti 4-5 3-4 11, Logan Thebiay 5-9 1-2 11, Kellen Hartford 1-1 1-2 3, Nick Colyer 0-0 1-2 1. Totals: 23-37 15-23 64.
3-point goals—Crater 9-23 (Caden Lasater 4-5, Tate Broesder 3-10, Javon Smith 2-5, Colton Vranes 0-3), Wilsonville 3-5 (Tristan Davis 2-3, Maxim Wu 1-1, Kallen Gutridge 0-1). Fouled out—Crater-None, Wilsonville-Logan Thebiay, Tristan Davis. Rebounds—Crater 26 (Logan Price 10), Wilsonville 25 (Logan Thebiay 6). Assists—Crater 12 (Colton Vranes 4), Wilsonville 14 (Kallen Gutridge 5). Total fouls—Crater 21, Wilsonville 17.
Reach reporter Danny Penza at 541-776-4469 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @penzatopaper.