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Leopards use big second quarter to cruise past Goldendale boys


Jaryd Cline

Goldendale's Jess Beierle (left) and Grant Gunkel grab a rebound against the Zillah Leopards on Dec. 20.

Just one week into the South Central Athletic Conference West league play, the Goldendale Timberwolves boys hoops team already posted twice as many wins as the previous year, but ran into what head coach Ted Wilkins thinks is the best team in the league.

The Timberwolves fell 83-44 to the Zillah Leopards on Dec. 20, evening their conference record at 2-2.

Before the game, Wilkins knew his team, much like the Goldendale girls, would have its hands full with the always-tough Leopards. Last year, Zillah finished fourth in the Class 1A state hoops tournament, but this year, with a new coach ¬– former Granger High School standout Mario Mengarelli – Wilkins and a few others said they believe the Leopards are better this season.

They helped make their case with the big win over the Timberwolves in which they led from start to finish. Offensively and defensively the Leopards were just too much for the Timberwolves. With eight players listed at 6-foot or taller, the Leopards had the size to make life difficult for the Timberwolves in the paint.

They also were quick, made smart, unselfish passes and were able to take advantage of 34 Goldendale turnovers. Eleven players scored and three finished with double digits in points as the deep Leopards were too much for Goldendale, which was without seniors Christian Casimiro and Jacob Hiebert, and freshman Corbin Bland.

Goldendale kept it somewhat close in the first quarter and trailed 19-10, but the Leopards pulled away after scoring 31 points in the second quarter, taking a 50-23 lead into halftime.

For the Timberwolves, they struggled offensively but were able to create extra possessions with 14 offensive rebounds, including five from senior guard Jess Beierle. Beierle also grabbed a game-high 10 total boards while Goldendale outrebounded Zillah 39-31. However, Zillah's aggressive defense allowed Goldendale to shoot just 34 percent from the field.

Goldendale 10 13 10 11 - 44

Zillah 19 31 19 13 - 83

Goldendale: Beierle 14, Mains 14, Doubravsky 6, Bischoff 5, Vega 3, Bostick 2.

Zillah: Whitaker 23, Delp 17, Widner 17, Salinas 8, Ellis 6, Sandlin 3, Ponce 2, Godina 2, Tilley 2, Diaz 2, Burge 1.


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