Boys Hoops: Bearcats Take Sole Possession of 2A EvCo


W.F. West junior Dirk Plakinger drained the go-ahead bucket with just seconds left to play and the Bearcats held on for a 56-52 road victory over rival Tumwater to claim sole possession of first place in the 2A Evergreen Conference.

Tied at 52 with under three seconds left in regulation, Plakinger knocked in a pull-up jumper near the elbow that rattled in to give the Bearcats a two-point lead.

The Thunderbirds threw a baseball pass crosscourt that flew out of bounds, then W.F. West tossed the inbounds to senior Gabe Cuestas, who was fouled and sank both free throws to ice the game.

“It was an exciting game, for sure,” W.F. West coach Chris White said. “A little rocky at times but it was a good fight. We had a lot of turnovers and made some poor decisions, but we weathered the storm and stayed gritty.”

Plakinger finished with a team-high 13 points, while Carter McCoy added 12, Soren Dalan had 10, all in the second quarter, and Cade Haller contributed eight.

“(Dalan) was really effective when he had chances,” White said. 

The Bearcat JV team dug itself a 15-0 hole, trailed by as many as 22 and completed a big comeback for a 51-47 victory.

W.F. West (5-2, 5-0 league) travels to Shelton on Wednesday and is trying to schedule a non-league match at Fort Vancouver on Friday.

Warriors Nab First Win in Two Seasons

Tyler Klatush scored a game-high 29 points and Rochester led wire-to-wire in a 71-59 non-league victory over visiting Tenino on Monday for its first victory in two seasons.

The Warriors jumped out to a 6-0 lead as Klatush scored 11 of Rochester’s 18 first-quarter points. The Warriors extended their lead to 24-12 before the Beavers closed the gap to trail by nine at the half.

Rochester racked up fouls in the third quarter, including a technical, which gave Tenino some momentum.

We knew they had two really good bigs that can score,” Rochester coach Derrick Pringle said. “(Takari) Hickle and (Conleth) Jackson are tough to stop, but we went in with the mindset to get them in foul trouble early so we can make a run.”

Caleb Vanderhoof added 19 points for the Warriors, while Parker McAferty and Sawyer Robbins each chipped in seven.

Tenino was led by Hickle’s 22 points and Jackson’s 17. Austin Gonia added nine.

“This is our first win in two seasons, in a program that had only two varsity returners, in  Vanderhoof and Clouse, with no big man,” Pringle said. “I’m proud of how they kept their poise and stayed tuned in to get the win.”

Rochester (1-6, 0-6 league) travels to Centralia on Wednesday. Tenino (1-6, 1-5 league) hosts Hoquiam on Tuesday.

Tigers Claw Past Bobcats

Centralia had four players in double figures as the Tigers led most the way in a 56-48 victory over Aberdeen on the road Monday in 2A EvCo play.

The Tigers shot the ball well early on, building a 13-point cushion at the half and survived a Bobcat run in the third to secure the victory.

“We answered in key moments,” Centralia coach Kyle Donahue said.

The Tigers were led by senior post Benito Valencia’s 14 points, while Landon Kaut and Brandon Yeung each added 12 and Jayden Pannette chipped in 11.

Centralia competed with just seven players suited up.

“They did a pretty good job and all seven contributed,” Donahue said. “They gave great minutes when they were on the court.”

Centralia (2-4, 2-4 league) hosts Rochester on Wednesday.


T-Wolves Tame Bulldogs

Tyler Blake erupted for a career-high 34 points to go with 16 rebounds as Morton-White Pass overcame a sluggish start to hold off Stevenson, 77-63, on the road Monday in 2B Central League action.

The Timberwolves led just 33-30 at the half but finally gained momentum after the break, building a 20-point lead during one stretch in the fourth quarter, to pull away for good.

“It took us about two and a half quarters to get off the bus,” MWP coach Chad Cramer said. “Once we found our legs, we played well. The second half was our kind of basketball.”

Adding to Blake’s offensive onslaught was Layten Collette, who scored seven points, dished out seven assists, hauled in 10 rebounds and stole two passes. Kysen Collette added 10 points.

The Timberwolves won the rebounding battle by 20.

MWP improves 3-6 overall, 3-5 in league and hosts Wahkiakum on Friday.