Putnam finds winning road formula at Pendleton, 55-38
Maggie Batz scored a game-high 12 points to lead four Putnam players in double figures, lifting the Kingsmen to a 55-38 road win over Pendleton in Friday's opening round of the OSAA Class 5A girls basketball playoffs.
Megan Spaulding finished with 11 points and Haley Brandel and Abigail Paul added 10 points each to help send the Kingsmen (18-7) into Thursday's quarterfinals against top-ranked La Salle Prep at Gill Coliseum in Corvallis.
"Our kids responded tremendously," Kingsmen coach Brad Miller said. "Everybody played well. We came out extremely focused and with a lot of energy, and we just overwhelmed Pendleton in the first half."
Putnam raced out to a 19-6 lead in the first quarter and then extended the lead to 33-11 at halftime.
"Our kids were really ready, the four seniors especially," Miller said. "They wanted so badly to get to the tournament before they finished, and they were really ready to play."
Putnam advanced to the quarterfinals for only the third time in school history and the first time since 1981 when the state was divided into three classifications and Kingsmen were a member of the Class AAA Three Rivers League.
"It's nothing but good for us," Miller said. "Our seniors are absolutely thrilled and more motivated than ever. And it's tremendously good for our younger players to get this kind of experience and have the extra practice time. You can't overestimate what that means to a program."
Pendleton played without junior Kalan McClothan, the Buckaroos all-Columbia River Conference first-team forward, who underwent emergency gall bladder surgery on Tuesday.
Haley Greg had eight points to lead Pendleton, and Kate Bradt and Hunter Kiele scored six points each for the Buckaroos (12-8).
Kanani Kremers scored nine points for the Kingsmen, who enjoyed a 34-18 advantage in points in the paint, and a 23-9 advantage in points off turnovers. Putnam also had a 35-25 edge in rebounds, and 25-15 advantage in turnovers.