The Road to Baker City and the OSAA 1A Girls High School Basketball Elite Eight proved to be a bumpy one for Hosanna Christian, a small private school in Klamath Falls, Oregon. The Lady Lions ran into a buzz saw in Damascus Christian, Friday night (Feb. 28) in Damascus (located East of Portland), falling behind by 43 points by halftime, eventually succumbing to defeat at the hands of the state’s 35th best school, in all classifications, 74-32.
Hosanna came out of their locker room at halftime, determined to make it a game and that is just what they did. The Lady Lions shook off their horrid first half and earned some pride and dignity back, outscoring the host Eagles 24-23.
Damascus scored the first seven points of the third quarter to push the lead to 50 points, at 58-8. But when most small schools in the Portland-Metro area have just rolled over and conceded defeat to the Elite Eagles, Hosanna made a furious charge and kept bringing it to their superior hosts. Senior wing, Dani Lynn Sundet answered the run, by ringing up back to back three point jump shots from the left corner, midway through the frame. Sundet finished with 10 points for Hosanna Christian. Sophomore post, Raelynn Murray paced all Lady Lion scorers with 13 points, hitting a pair of three point shots from the left side of the arc in the second half.
Hosanna Christian junior Bethany Moro continued the late aerial assault on Damascus with a three ball at the 5:15 mark of the final stanza and a long range jumper with 4:05 left in the game for six of her eight points on the night. The Lady Lions won the final quarter 14-4, after being outscored 19-10 in the third quarter. When you look at the roster for Hosanna Christian, that has just one Senior and several lower classmen, the future looks very bright for the Lady Lions.
On this night the Senior-laden Eagles indeed reigned Supreme thanks to a game high 23 points from senior guard and coaches’ daughter Valerie Wakefield. Fellow senior, Karissa Cox added 19 points for the defending 1A State Champions, who will continue their quest for back to back titles next Wednesday (March 5) in Baker, Oregon taking on Country Christian, a small school from Molalla, southeast of Portland.
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