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Columbia Basin basketball teams compete at Yakima SunDome

by Rebecca Pettingill
Staff Writer | December 30, 2021 1:00 AM

YAKIMA — Four Columbia Basin basketball teams competed at the Wilbur-Ellis SunDome Shootout in Yakima Tuesday and Wednesday.

The two-day tournament featured more than a dozen teams – four of them from the Columbia Basin. Ephrata High School boys, Royal High School boys, and Quincy High School boys and girls teams traveled to Yakima for the annual tournament.

The tournament originally was set to host 26 games, but was reduced to 16 after several teams backed out due to traveling concerns related to the weather.

The Ephrata boys basketball team played two matches, one against Lakewood High School and the other against Royal High School.

The game against Lakewood on Tuesday was close, but Ephrata came out on top, 58-56. Sophomore Hans Roberts put up the most baskets for the Tigers, scoring 16 points.

Ephrata head coach Brandon Evenson said Lakewood was a tough team, but the Tigers were able to hold the lead most of the game.

The next day, the Tigers took on Royal, another Columbia Basin school. Again Ephrata barely came out on top, winning 59-52 in overtime.

While the end of the game seemed close, Royal had a 21-point lead over Ephrata at halftime. The Tigers then rallied for 19 points in the third quarter and shut down Royal’s scoring, leading to a tie at the end of the fourth quarter. In overtime, Ephrata scored more than double the amount of points Royal was able to put up, securing the victory.

“The Royal game was a good game. A tale of two halves,” Evenson said.

Evenson explained his team struggled to get going in the first half, but then managed to find its groove in the second quarter to catch up to Royal.

“The defensive intensity was much better in the second half,” said Evenson.

Royal High School senior Jace Allred had 17 points for the Knights, and Ephrata High School senior Ethan Black had a game high score of 18 points for the Tigers.

Results of other local teams’ games were not available at press time.

Box Scores:

Ephrata - 16 18 16 8 - 58

Lakewood - 12 17 11 16 - 56

Ephrata - 6 9 19 13 12 - 59

Royal - 21 15 0 11 5 - 52