Milwaukie boys and girls bite the bullet

by: PARKER LEE - Milwaukie senior Alexis Noren is mugged by West Albany sophomore guard Corey James in the Mustangs Friday consolation semifinal loss to West Albany at the University of Oregons Knight Arena.Milwaukie High School’s boys and girls basketball teams fell short of expectations at last week’s Class 5A High School Championship Basketball Tournament, both teams bowing out of the tournament with two straight losses.

Milwaukie’s sixth-ranked girls team drew two tough match-ups, and they fell to second-ranked West Albany 47-33 in the consolation semifinals, after getting blown out by 2013 state champion Willamette 59-37 in the quarterfinals.

Also ranked sixth in the state, Milwaukie boys bowed out with a 70-63 loss to seventh-ranked West Albany in their consolation semifinal, after yielding to third-ranked Silverton 55-47 in the quarterfinals.

Willamette’s third-ranked girls team went on to upset top-ranked Springfield 48-41 in the girls final, while West Albany defeated Lebanon 51-41 in the girls fourth-place final.

Silverton beat Mountain View 66-54 in the boys third-place final, while West Albany lost to Wilsonville 50-47 in the fourth-place final.

Willamette snaps

a 21-game win string

Milwaukie’s girls early exit from the state tournament was especially disappointing, because the girls were riding a school-record 21-game win string before their quarterfinal loss to Willamette, and because the girls had five senior starters.

Rebounding and depth proved pivotal in the loss to Willamette. The Mustangs got out-rebounded 28-9, and Willamette’s bench outscored Milwaukie’s bench 13-3.

Still, the Mustangs battled and trailed by only eight points at halftime.

Willamette went on a 10-3 run to start the second half, and the game was out of reach.

Seniors Lorissa Martine (9 points), April Meads (9 points) and Emily Downs (8 points) led a balanced Mustang offense, hitting seven 3-pointers between them.

Milwaukie offensive leader Alexis Noren made only one field goal and scored only three points, but she sparked the Mustang offense with eight assists.

Willamette offensive leader Lexi Brando tallied a game-high 23 points and hauled down eight rebounds, but she had to work for her points. She was only 7-of-17 from the field.

Milwaukie coeds hung with West Albany for three quarters, but someone put a lid on the basket in the fourth quarter.

Trailing by just three points, at 36-33, after three quarters, the Mustangs went 0-for-8 from the field in the fourth period, when they went scoreless.

The Mustangs had gone 16-for-34 from the field (.470) — with three 3-pointers, before the fourth-quarter scoring drought.

Noren scored a team-high 16 points, connecting on 6-of-11 shots from the floor, with two 3-point baskets. Martine had four assists.

The Mustangs had only three turnovers in the game with the second-ranked Bulldogs.

Ali Nelke, a 5-11 sophomore post, proved a handful for the Mustangs, scoring a game-high 17 points and claiming 15 rebounds.

Milwaukie girls, who won a school record 24 games and their school’s first trophy in girls basketball with a fourth-place finish last year, finished the 2012-13 season with a 22-4 record. They went 14-0 in the Northwest Oregon Conference, winning their school’s first outright league championship.

The Mustangs graduate six seniors from this year’s 12-player girls state tournament roster — NWOC Player of the Year Alexis Noren (5-10 guard), Lorissa Martine (5-7 guard), April Meads (5-10 wing), Emily Downs (5-10 wing), Taylor Cunningham (5-7 wing) and Hana Whisman (5-4 guard).

Expected to return next season are: juniors Shelby Enevoldsen, Skyler Hampton and Breena Webb; sophomore Chloe Hester, and freshmen Julia Rivers and Alexa Mulford.

Mustangs hold their

own with the Foxes

Milwaukie guys struggled to find the basket at crunch time, and they dropped a 55-47 barnburner to third-ranked Silverton in their March 6 quarterfinal game of the Class 5A Boys State Tournament.

The Mustangs trailed much of the game, but they kept it close. And when Jazz Johnson hit two free throws with 6:04 remaining, Milwaukie led 37-36.

by: PARKER LEE - Milwaukie senior C.J. Hubbard (5) is harassed by Silverton defenders Toby Roth (left) and Preston Kirk (11) in Milwaukies 55-47 loss to the Silver Foxes in a quarterfinal game of the Class 5A State Tournament, played at Eugenes Knight Arena.But that was the Mustangs’ last hurrah, as they missed 11 of 14 attempted field goals down the stretch, while the Silver Foxes salted the game away with free throws.

It was the 18th straight win for Silverton, which also defeated Milwaukie 67-56 in a Dec. 27 game at Silverton.

The Mustangs had a tough time slowing Silverton 6-2 senior wing Zach Gengler. Gengler made only 5-of-20 shots from the floor, but he was 12-of-17 from the charity stripe, and he tallied a game-high 22 points on the night. He also had a dominating game on the backboards, hauling down 15 rebounds.

The Mustangs had one of their worst shooting nights of the year. Jazz Johnson (13 points) and Tre’Shann Stone (11 points, 4 assists) led Milwaukie in scoring, but they were a combined 7-of-36 (19 percent) from the field.

Henry Morris held his own on the inside for Milwaukie, claiming 10 rebounds and rejecting four shots.

A second-quarter shooting slump proved the difference in the Mustangs 70-63 consolation semifinal loss to West Albany.

Trailing 16-15 at the end of the first period, the Mustangs went scoreless in the second period until C.J. Hubbard connected on a jumper in the paint with three minutes left in the first half.

Milwaukie trailed 36-20 at halftime, and it was an uphill battle the rest of the way.

Hubbard hit two free throws that trimmed the gap to six points, at 55-49, with five minutes to play. But the Mustangs couldn’t get any closer.

Tre’Shann Stone scored a team-high 22 points in the losing effort. Hubbard (10 points, 3 assists), Jazz Johnson (9 points) and Morris (8 points) also contributed in a balanced attack.

But Stone and Johnson continued to struggle to get their shots to drop. They made only 7-of-31 (22 percent) shots between them.

The Mustangs struggled to stop West Albany 6-8 junior Nate Sherwood and Bulldog 6-2 senior Chad Sherwood, who scored 24 points apiece. Nate Sherwood made 18-of-22 free throws.

Milwaukie guys, who placed second at state a year ago, finished the 2013-13 season with an 18-8 record. They won the NWOC title outright, finishing with a 13-1 record, after tying Wilsonville for first place in the conference the previous two seasons.

Milwaukie guys will return five players from this year’s state playoff roster in 2013-14, including junior starters Tre’Shann Stone (6-1 point guard) and Tyler Spencer (6-4 wing/post), and sophomore starter Jazz Johnson (5-11 point guard). They’ll also return 6-1 junior Tony Bruno and 6-4 freshman Isaac Mbuyamba.

Lost to graduation will be: C.J. Hubbard (6-3 wing), Henry Morris (6-9 post), Richard Ramsey (5-11 guard), Trevontae Anderson (6-0 wing), Thomas Nisbett (6-6 point guard/forward), Aubrey Daschel-Lloyd (6-3 guard) and Kendrick Bourne (6-2 wing).

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