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GIRLS BASKETBALL: Comets fall in battle of MWL’s best

EUGENE — After trailing for the entire game, Crater’s furious fourth-quarter rally came up short in a battle of the Midwestern League’s top two teams, as top-ranked Willamette clinched the outright Midwestern League title with a 45-36 win over the third-ranked Comets on Tuesday night.

With the Wolverines leading 33-21 entering the fourth quarter, the Comets (18-5, 11-3 MWL) began the period on an 11-2 run to cut the Wolverines’ lead to 35-32 with two minutes left. Willamette (23-1, 15-0), however, responded with an 8-2 run to wrap up the victory.

The Comets’ Kate Stidham recorded eight points, 13 rebounds and four steals, who also got 10 points and six rebounds from Abigail Winslow and nine points and four assists from Kayleigh Gugliotta.

Lydia Traore pulled down 10 rebounds to go with her four points for Crater, which still has two regular season games remaining.

The Wolverines picked up a game-high 14 points from freshman Brynn Smith.

CRATER (36): K. Gugliotta 9, Sizemore 0, Gish 0, Dippel 2, Hirsch 1, Stidham 8, S. Winslow 1, McCauley 1, A. Winslow 10, Vranes 0, A. Gugliotta 0, Traore 4. Totals: 14 7-13 36.

WILLAMETTE (45): Morris 4, Warberg 10, Nguyen 8, Smith 14, Wagner 2, Coffman 6, Ireland 1. Totals: 19 4-15 45.

Crater281115— 36

Willamette8151012— 45

3-point goals — Crater 1 (K. Gugliotta 1), Willamette 3 (Warberg 2, Smith 1). Fouled out — A. Winslow.

SOUTH EUGENE 55, GRANTS PASS 49: At Eugene, Grants Pass raced to a 19-6 first-quarter lead but could not hold on in the Southwest Conference contest, with Sofia Megert scoring 14 of her 17 points in the second half to spur South Eugene’s comeback.

Brooke Anderson led all scorers with 23 points for the Cavers (11-9, 4-5 SWC), who were outscored 35-22 in the final two quarters.

Alia Harris added 16 points for the Axe (7-14, 5-4).

GRANTS PASS (49): Brandes 2, Anderson 23, Thompson 0, Bruner 2, Pastrell 3, Mock 8, B. Wakefield 5, Vainuku-Johnson 6, Tobey 0. Totals: 17 13-18 49.

SOUTH EUGENE (55): Megert 17, Lucas 6, Harris 16, Davis 6, Betenson 5, Bilenki-Boyd 3, Tuguldur 0, Keiper 2, Galloway 0. Totals: 19 10-13 55.

Grants Pass198814— 49

South Eugene6142312— 55

3-point goals — Grants Pass 3 (Pastrell 1, Mock 1, Vainuku-Johnson 1), South Eugene 7 (Megert 3, Lucas 2, Betenson 1, Bilenki-Boyd 1).

CHURCHILL 46, EAGLE POINT 24: At Eugene, Eagle Point wasn’t able to keep up with host Churchill in the Midwestern League game, falling behind 10-2 after one quarter and 22-7 by halftime.

Morgan Dole scored six points and Haley McCornack added four points and five rebounds for the Eagles (5-15, 2-11 MWL) with three games remaining in the regular season.

Rivers Richardson’s 16 points led Churchill (16-6, 10-7), which is tied with Springfield for third place in the MWL.

EAGLE POINT (24): Raber 0, Dole 6, Nielsen 0, Hanan 4, Baldwin 4, Pena 0, Munoz 0, Balero 2, McCornack 4, Schauffler 0, Cabrera 4, Lindstrom 0. Totals: 8 5-8 24.

CHURCHILL (46): Dotts 5, Gansen 3, Poetzl 2, Rodman 2, Woolley 0, Jackson 2, Moody 5, Statzer 4, Scott 5, Humphery 2, Richardson 16. Totals: 18 6-6 46.

Eagle Point25413— 24

Churchill10121212— 46

3-point goals — Eagle Point 3 (Dole 2, Baldwin 1), Churchill 4 (Dotts 1, Gansen 1, Moody 1, Scott 1).

THURSTON 46, ASHLAND 24: At Ashland, after hanging tough with Thurston in the first half, Ashland didn’t shoot well enough to keep pace thereafter in the Midwestern League contest.

Gabby Heiken splashed in three 3-pointers for the Grizzlies (1-20, 0-14 MWL) for nine points while Mary Montgomery chipped in six.

The Colts (10-10, 7-7) received 19 points from Morgan Casley.

THURSTON (46): Brady 0, Casley 19, Carpenter 2, Bonar 1, Jones 0, Hall 7, Graves 0, Newell 2, Montes 0, Kauffman 5, Tovey 8, Custer 2. Totals: 16 12-19 46.

ASHLAND (24): Montgomery 6, Sayre 0, Lambert 3, Caruso 2, G. Carter 0, Jenkins 1, Heiken 9, L. Carter 0, Robinson 0, Pokrob 3. Totals: 9 1-4 24.

Thurston1291114— 46

Ashland9645— 24

3-point goals — Thurston 3 (Casley 2, Newell 1), Ashland 5 (Lambert 1, Heiken 3, Pokrob 1). Fouled out — Custer.

JV result — Thurston won.

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