The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

By Jaryd Cline
Sports editor 

Girls pick up first win at Wahluke, narrowly fall at home to Bruins


December 5, 2018

Jaryd Cline

Junior Ashley Bartkowski takes a shot from the low block during the fourth quarter of Tuesday night's game against the Columbia High Bruins.

The Goldendale girls got out to a small lead during the first quarter of last Friday's season opener at Wahluke but kept building and building on that lead throughout the rest of the game, knocking off the Warriors 55-20 to open with a win in new head coach Konrad Bomberger's debut.

Led by an all-around team effort from the girls in which every player on the team got into the game, the visiting Wolves outscored the Warriors in every quarter and held them to just nine points over the second half.

After knocking off the South Central Athletic Conference East foe on Friday, Goldendale was back at it on Tuesday for its home opener against Columbia in an exciting, down-to-the-wire game that featured late lead changes and a rowdy crowd.

The Bruins held on for a 42-39 win over the Wolves after Keri Hylton hit the go-ahead free throw with around 20 seconds left in the fourth quarter. Hylton's crucial free throw came shortly after Goldendale took its first lead of the game at 39-37 with 1:47 left to play when Sara Hiebert scored from the low block to put the Wolves in front.

But the following possession, Hylton scored underneath to tie the game, and shortly after went one for two from the line to give the Bruins the one-point advantage with under 30 seconds to play. She hit the first and missed the second and the Wolves corralled the rebound, and raced down the floor to try and beat the buzzer. None of the three officials saw Bomberger signaling for a timeout after Goldendale boarded the missed free throw and raced down the floor, and eventually possession was awarded to the Bruins after a jump ball with 7.9 seconds left. The Bruins tacked on two more free throws in the waning seconds to seal the win.

Trailing by five entering the fourth, the Wolves got contributions from a handful of the girls to help claw back into the game. Senior Kelli Bighorn scored five points in the fourth including hitting three free throws after she was fouled from beyond the arc, junior Abby Hedges canned a jumper, and junior Ashley Bartkowski tied the game at 37 with her post score with 2:42 to go.

It was an exciting home-opening game that kept the fans at the edge of their seats, even though the Wolves weren't able to squeak out a win.


During last Friday's opener and Bomberger's debut, a mix of young and old Timberwolves had strong games including another player making their varsity debut. Freshman guard Payton Sheridan was all over the court making things happen, grabbing a game-best 14 rebounds and adding four points while running point.

Senior Kelli Bighorn, also splitting time at point guard, came out on fire offensively, knocking down all four of her shots from beyond the arc while leading all scorers with 16 points.

The team didn't face much of a press, with the Warriors only putting the pressure on during a few possessions, but when they did, the Goldendale girls broke it for layins.

On the other side of the ball, Bomberger said he liked all the pressure that the quicker Goldendale guards were able to put on Wahluke's ballhandlers. Senior Lene Riggers, junior Abby Hedges, and sophomore Tiana Watson made it tough on the Warriors with their defensive pressure and helped force a handful of turnovers.

Along with Sheridan, freshman Sara Hiebert had a strong debut with 10 points while junior Delaney Peters also added 10 points.

Junior Madi Gilk and sophomore Leslie Smith both added their first varsity baskets, Smith scoring in the second and Gilk getting a layin during the third quarter.

Goldendale 11 19 9 18 - 55

Wahluke 7 4 6 3 - 20

Goldendale scoring: Bighorn 16, Peters 10, Hiebert 10, Sheridan 4, Watson 4, Smith 4, Gilk 4, Riggers 2, Hedges 1.

Up next

The Wolves will take on another SCAC East team in the Kiona Benton Bears on Friday at GHS starting at 6 p.m. The Bears are 0-2 on the year with losses to Highland and Tri-Cities Prep.

On Saturday, Goldendale will be back on the road, traveling to River View for a 6 p.m. meeting with the Panthers. River View, as of Monday night, is 1-0 with a 52-46 win over Columbia Burbank on last Saturday.


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