Rainier Qualifies for Regionals as Loggers’ Season Ends


MOVING ON: The Mountaineers Use a Big Second Half to Eliminate Onalaska and Clinch a Regional Playoff Berth

Rainier outscored Onalaska 28-12 in the second half and the Mountaineers cruised past the Loggers, 46-28, to clinch 2B District IV’s fifth and final regional berth Saturday at W.F. West High School.

“It’s a great feeling and it’s one we’ve been working toward and that they’ve really earned,” Rainier coach Brandon Eygabroad said. “It’s a little bit of a relief and a little bit of happiness. Overjoyed with the opportunity for these girls to play another week of basketball and go on to regionals.”

It was a tight contest in the first half, as Rainier jumped out to a 13-6 lead in the first quarter before Onalaska punched back with a 10-5 run to cut the deficit to two points heading into halftime.

But it was a pivotal fourth quarter where Rainier put the clamps on, holding the Loggers to just one bucket in the final frame while scoring 15 points of their own to secure the win.

Brooklynn Swenson and Bryn Beckman led the charge for the Mountaineers with game-highs of 13 points each. Faith Boesch drilled three 3-pointers to finish with nine points and Isabella Holmes chipped in eight.

Rainier was coming off a winner-to-regionals, loser-to-play-in game on Thursday, where they lost to Wahkiakum. But just like they’ve done all season, they bounced back after a loss.

The Mountaineers have now won three loser-out games in the district playoffs, and three of their last four games. Eygabroad credits it to his team’s toughness.

“This is one of the most resilient groups of girls I’ve ever coached and they just keep coming back day after day,” Eygabroad said “After a loss, they come back with the same effort, same energy and practice the same mentality. They never back down.”

The Mountaineers now await regional playoff seeding to be announced Sunday afternoon.

Onalaska, meanwhile, saw its season come to an end after a tumultuous two games in the consolation bracket.

The Loggers started the tournament with back-to-back dominant wins over Morton-White Pass and Forks to vault to the semifinals, where they were edged by 2B Pacific League champion Raymond.

That sent them to a winner-to-regionals game against Adna Thursday, which turned into a 55-28 loss before Saturday’s defeat to Rainier in a loser-out match.

Lawrence led the Loggers with nine points against the Mountaineers, while Morgan Hamilton scored seven and Dakota Hamilton finished with six.

Four seniors played their final game for the Loggers: Cierra Russ, Alex Cleveland-Barrera, Lawrence and Hope Rhodes.