The Rainier boys basketball team might have gotten itself into a mud wrestling match early against Toledo on Thursday, but the Mountaineers stuck with it until the going got better, coming back strong in the second half to beat the Riverhawks 44-30 to wrap up the regular season.
“It is amazing how the game honors toughness,” Rainier coach Ben Sheaffer said. “Our guys continue to play with great energy and toughness, and even when we are struggling offensively, it is crazy how the ball starts to go in the hole.”
That’s what happened in the third quarter, when the Mountaineers — who went into halftime trailing 18-15 — snapped off 20 points to take the lead for good.
Eight of those points came from Jared Sprouffske, who finished with nine on the night. JAke Meldrum led Rainier with 12 points, and Josh Meldrum scored 11.
Things went back to the low-scoring way in the fourth, but by then, the hosts had done their damage.
Toledo, meanwhile, scored just six points in both the third and fourth quarters. Rogan Stanley led the Riverhawks with 12 points; Kaven Winters had 10.
The result finalizes the bottom of the district bracket on the Central 2B League’s side of things. Rainier finishes sixth, and will face P2BL No. 3 Ocosta in the first round Saturday. Toledo, at No. 7, will play C2BL No. 3 Wahkiakum.