Wildcats yield 13 points in first half of third-straight win
No late-game Dylan Livesay heroics necessary.
A year after needing a crunch-time bucket from the now-graduated guard just to force overtime against Florence-Siuslaw, the Wilsonville boys basketball team required nothing of the sort.
The Wildcats put together a lockdown defensive effort and scored with relative ease, rendering the second half a formality as they finished off a commanding 75-32 rout of the Vikings at home in nonconference play Dec. 21.
Not only did they notch a season high in offensive production, but they also gave up a season low in opponent points to earn their third-straight victory over a Class 4A team.
For Wilsonville (3-0), it all starts on defense.
Thats what we focus on here, senior guard Zach Malvar said. Were younger this year, but once (the newer players) pick it up we should be as good defensively as we were last year.
The Wildcats were plenty stingy last year, holding opponents below 40 points on 10 different occasions and giving up an average of just 43.62 points per game. This year, through three games, theyve allowed a per-game average of just 40.33.
Wilsonville scored the first 15 points of the game against Siuslaw, building up a 20-6 advantage after eight minutes. It was similar to the Wildcats near-perfect first quarter against Scappoose eight days earlier, when they took a 21-3 lead in the opening eight minutes of a 70-42 rout.
Wilsonville held a whopping 42-13 edge at halftime against the Vikings, its lead ballooning to 58-19 at the end of the third quarter.
The Wildcats logged their largest lead at 72-23 on a jumper by sophomore reserve Dylan Jordan midway through the fourth quarter.
Standout sophomore Tyler Hieb dropped 19 points in the first half, finishing with a game-high 22. He had a career-high 27 points against Scappoose.
Malvar added 16 points in a variety of ways. He scored the first points of the game on a breakaway, capped Wilsonvilles opening 14-0 run with a midrange shot and nailed a pull-up jumper after a wicked crossover dribble in the second quarter.
The Wildcats started the second half with three-straight steals and three-straight transition baskets, one each by Malvar, Hieb and freshman Zach Reichle (11 points).
Nine different players scored for the Wildcats.
Were sharing the ball better, Malvar said. We dont really care who takes the shot as long as we win.
Malvar said the program is looking forward to hosting the three-day Wilsonville Invitational Tournament, which starts Dec. 26. For WHS, competition begins with an 8 p.m. duel against The Dalles.
Springfield, Silverton, Portland-Cleveland, Pendleton, Corvallis-Crescent Valley and Redmond are also participating in the eight-team tournament.
Last season, Wilsonville defeated The Dalles and Eugene-Marist before losing in the championship game to Springfield-Thurston in overtime.
Last year, we didnt come through, Malvar said. We want to get that back. ... Im ready to start playing some bigger competition.
AT A GLANCE
Wilsonville 75, Siuslaw 32
Dec. 21 at Wilsonville High School
1 2 3 4 F
Siuslaw 6 7 6 13 32
Wilsonville 20 22 16 17 75
Siuslaw (32): Sam Johnson 9, John Dodson 8, Preston Mitchell 5, Joseph Dotson 3, (#12) 3, Reese Siegel 2, Seth Campbell 2.
Wilsonville (75): Tyler Hieb 22, Zach Malvar 16, Zach Reichle 11, Jack McNulty 6, Dylan Jordan 6, Sam Bullock 5, Keenan McClellan 4, Wyatt Fennell 3, Harrison Steiger 2.