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St. Marys rallies for upset in state quarters

COOS BAY — St. Mary’s roared back from a halftime deficit and upset third-ranked Salem Academy, 71-55, in the quarterfinals of the Class 3A boys basketball state championships Thursday at Marshfield High.

St. Mary’s (16-9) trailed 32-27 at halftime, then outscored Salem Academy (19-6) 27-9 in the third quarter to take a 54-41 lead.

St. Mary’s, ranked seventh in the state coaches poll, next faces Medford and Far West League rival Cascade Christian in the semifinals at 8:15 p.m. Friday. Tenth-seeded Cascade Christian surprised No. 2 seed Dayton, 53-45 Thursday.

“It was a huge third quarter,” said St. Mary’s coach Richard Vasey. “We talked at halftime about we’ve really got to come out and jet get a couple stops and let our defense kind of flow into our offense. And man, I thought it would take a little longer, but we came out and they did exactly as I asked them to.”

A 3-pointer by Luke Bennion and a steal and a layup by Aiiloa Kaeo-Wailehua tied the game at 32-32 just 31 seconds into the second half.

After it was deadlocked at 36, St. Mary’s went on a 14-3 run to build its cushion.

St. Mary’s was seeded sixth and Salem Academy third entering the quarters.

“I think we were a little tight,” said Vasey, “but once we got that layup, I think the kids were kind of like, all right, we can play with these guys, and loosened up a little bit. And away we went.”

Tre Foster had a huge game for St. Mary’s. The 6-foot-5 senior, who was player of the year in the Far West League, amassed 28 points, 13 rebounds, five blocks and two assists. He made 11 of 20 field goals.

Vasey noted teams could have about 20 games of film on his Crusaders by now, and marvels at what Foster accomplishes despite a lot of defensive attention.

“It’s still impressive to me that he does what he does,” said the coach. “This team, before the game, we actually heard them talking, and they said, if you stop Tre, you win.”

Will Kranenburg added 14 points, six rebounds, four assists and four steals for the winners, and Josh Banton had 10 points, three rebounds and two assists.

Bennion scored nine points and Kaeo-Wailehua tallied six points, three assists and three steals.

“We’re going to enjoy this evening,” said Vasey, “and we’re glad we don’t have to play in the morning.”

ST. MARY’S (16-9)

Tre Foster 11-20 6-13 28; Will Kranenburg 3-4 8-10 14; Josh Banton 2-3 4-4 10; Luke Bennion 4-8 0-1 9; Aiiloa Kaeo-Wailehua 2-7 2-4 6; Sean Snyder 1-1 0-0 2; Jonah Hadley 1-1 0-0 2; James Forrester 0-4 0-0 0. Totals 24-48 20-32 71.

SALEM ACADEMY (19-6)

Benett Bos 7-14 2-2 20; Luke Miller 4-11 0-0 8; Austin Miller 3-7 2-3 8; Chase Brown 3-4 1-2 7; Hunter Schwenke 2-10 0-0 6; John Pass 2-6 0-0 4; Cameron Haslebacher 1-3 0-0 2. Totals 22-55 5-7 55.

St. Mary’s11162717— 71

Salem Academy1616914— 55

3-point goals—St. Mary’s 3-13 (Josh Banton 2-2; Luke Bennion 1-3; Aiiloa Kaeo-Wailehua 0-3; James Forrester 0-3; Tre Foster 0-2), Salem Academy 6-23 (Benett Bos 4-7; Hunter Schwenke 2-7; Austin Miller 0-3; John Pass 0-2; Cameron Haslebacher 0-1; Luke Miller 0-3). Fouled out—St. Mary’s-None, Salem Academy-Benett Bos. Rebounds—St. Mary’s 27 (Tre Foster 13), Salem Academy 38 (Hunter Schwenke 7; Austin Miller 7; Benett Bos 7). Assists—St. Mary’s 14 (Will Kranenburg 4), Salem Academy 10 (Austin Miller 3; Luke Miller 3). Total fouls—St. Mary’s 11, Salem Academy 20. Technical fouls—St. Mary’s-None, Salem Academy-Team.

Moda Health Players of the Game:

Tre Foster, St. Mary’s

Benett Bos, Salem Academy