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Glencoe girls clinch playoff berth with runner-up finish


Crimson Tide finish second in the league behind only Tigard

Even with second place locked up, Glencoe wanted to win this one.

Hosting Tualatin last Friday on Senior Night, the Crimson Tide girls basketball team seemed to have the game well in hand, jumping out to a 14-3 second-quarter lead.

But the pesky Timberwolves built some momentum with the final seven points of the half and then turned up the heat defensively in the second half en route to a 35-29 comeback victory.

The visitors went on a 9-3 run over the last four-plus minutes to break a 26-all tie and close out the contest. The defeat denied Glencoe a season sweep of Tualatin — the Tide took the first game 29-21 on the road on Jan. 31.

“We got kind of caught up in the pressure,” Glencoe coach Dylan Hettrich said about the Timberwolves, who pressed and harassed the Tide constantly in the second half.

“We never really rebounded from that. We kind of played right into them, dribbling the ball out of control, making a lot of out of control passes.”

Even with the setback, Glencoe could do no worse than a tie for second place in the Pacific Conference. But thanks to a 46-31 win at last-place Newberg on Tuesday, the Tide (15-9, 10-4) claimed second all for themselves and one of the league’s three automatic state playoff berths.

Tualatin, a 45-43 loser to Hillsboro on Tuesday, finished at 13-9 and 8-6 in league for third.

Early on, Glencoe appeared headed toward a runaway victory. Cassidy Griswold knocked down two free throws to end the first quarter 8-3, and after she hit a jumper off a Courtney Clayton pass midway through the second, the advantage swelled to 14-3.

But the tone shifted from there. The Timberwolves got a 3-pointer from Jordyn Lyle, and then buckets from Emily Leonard and Tamkia Etherly to get within 14-10 at halftime.

In the third, the Tide struggled not only with Tualatin’s defensive pressure, but also with rebounding, giving the visitors a number of second chances on the boards.

“It was either they were getting offensive rebounds or they were tying us up,” Hettrich said. “That’s what it seemed like almost every time. It was frustrating.”

The Timberwolves took their first lead since 2-0 at 21-20 when Jasmine Miller converted a Glencoe turnover into a bucket with less than a minute remaining in the third quarter and then extended it to 24-20 when Madi Hall nailed a 3-pointer a few seconds before the buzzer.

“I think we got a little bit frazzled and we didn’t keep our composure,” said Griswold, who led the Tide with nine points. “But we did come and fight back a little bit ... but it just wasn’t enough this time.”

Though the momentum had firmly swung in Tualatin’s favor by that point, the Tide did not go away, tying the game at 26-all on Lillie Hamel’s drive midway through the final quarter.

But Savannah Heugly, who scored a game-high 10 points, answered with a runner in the lane, giving Tualatin a lead it would not relinquish. Lindsay Barrow and Tessa Bullis followed with a combined five points before Griswold answered with a 3-pointer to make the score 33-29 with about 90 seconds to go. A couple of Timberwolves free throws accounted for the final margin.

Miller added six points for Tualatin, while Hamel recorded six for the Tide and Jessica Lantz chipped in four.

“Tualatin is a super good team, and every single time that we play them, it’s always a good game,” said Clayton, who was honored as Glencoe’s lone senior before the contest.

“So we knew it was going to be a fight until the end and that’s what it was. And we just came up short.”

The Tide are now off until the first round of the Class 6A state playoffs on Tuesday. Their opponent will be determined after this weekend’s play-in round.