Tualatin looks to bounce back strong in the playoffs

TUALATIN — Sure, Tuesday's regular season finale had to be a bit frustrating for the Tualatin High School girls basketball team.

But, the good news is, the Timberwolves will have a chance to make up for that frustration.

In the state DAN BROOD - LEFTY -- Tualatin senior Lindsay Barrow looks to put up a shot in Tuesday's game with Hillsboro.

The Wolves finished their regular-season slate Tuesday with a hard-fought 45-43 loss to Hillsboro in a Pacific Conference game played at Tualatin High School.

“That was a little frustrating, but we played hard,” said Tualatin senior wing Madi Hall, who led the Wolves with 14 points in the contest. “We needed to do better with the little things on defense and play with a little more urgency.”

With the win, Hillsboro finished the regular season with a 7-7 mark in Pacific Conference play and an overall record of 17-7. Tualatin finished up up at 8-6 in conference games, putting the Timberwolves in third place in the final league standings, and at 13-9 on the season.

Tualatin will next be in action on Tuesday, when it will host a Class 6A state playoff first-round game. Tualatin's opponent, and starting time for the contest, weren't available when The Times went to press.

“We talked about it,” Hall said of the upcoming state playoff games. “It's a new season and we have to prove that we belong where we're at. We're going into it with a good, positive attitude.”

In the upcoming state playoff tilt, the Wolves will likely be hoping to have a better shooting night than they did early on in Tuesday's game with Hillsboro.

Tualatin made just one of 11 shots from the field — coming on a three-pointer by Hall — in the first quarter, which ended with Hillsboro holding a 12-6 DAN BROOD - BEHIND THE HOOP -- Tualatin senior post Jasmine Miller goes up for a reverse layup in Tuesday's game.

Things were a bit worse in the second quarter. Tualatin made just one of 15 shots from the field in the period, coming on a put-back basket bay senior post Jasmine Miller.

But, thanks to some strong defensive play, and 11 made free throws, Tualatin trailed just 21-16 at the intermission.

Hillsboro opened the third quarter with baskets by freshman Makenna Gambee and junior Tarea Green, giving the Spartans a 25-16 lead with 6 minutes and 24 seconds left in the period.

But the Wolves came storming back. Miller scored on a drive to the basket and Hall sank a trio of three-pointers in the final 4:24 of the period, including a buzzer-beater, trimming the Hillsboro lead to 31-29 going into the fourth quarter.

Hall scored on a backdoor layup off a bounce pass from Miller to open the final stanza. Tualatin senior Lindsay Barrow then converted a three-point play to give the Wolves their first lead of the game, at 34-31, with 6:51 left to play.

A jumper by Barrow, a pair of free throws by senior guard Tessa Bullis and a short-range banker by junior Nikki Miller kept Tualatin in front, at 40-38 with 4:37 remaining.

But Hillsboro scored the game's next five points, four by Green, to claim a 43-40 advantage with 2:39 left to play.

The Wolves came back to tie the game, at 43-43, when sophomore Tamika Etherly sank a three-pointer with 1:21 left to play. But Tualatin wouldn't be able to score again.

Senior guard Lauren Lykins gave the Spartans a 44-43 lead when she went 1 for 2 from the free throw line with 56.4 seconds remaining. The 6-foot-4 Green then blocked a Tualatin shot on the Wolves' next DAN BROOD - BOMBS AWAY -- Tualatin senior Madi Hall sank four three-pointers in Tuesday's game.

The Wolves, still trailing by one, got the ball back with 17 seconds left to play. After calling time out with 10.8 seconds remaining, Tualatin worked to get a foul-line jumper, but that attempt was off the mark.

Lykins was fouled as she grabbed the rebound. She again went 1 for 2 from the stripe with 2.1 seconds left to play, sealing the 45-43 win for the Spartans.

Barrow scored 11 points for Tualatin while also coming up with five steals in the contest. Jasmine Miller added six points and 10 rebounds.

Green had a big night for Hillsboro with 19 points, 18 rebounds and five blocked shots.

Prior to Tuesday's game, Tualatin came back from a 14-10 halftime deficit to score a 35-29 win over Glencoe in a conference game played Friday at Glencoe High School.

Senior post Savannah Heugly led a balanced Timberwolf scoring attack in the win with 10 points. Jasmine Miller added six points while Barrow, Bullis and Hall scored four apiece.

The winner of Tuesday's first round state playoff game at Tualatin will advance to play in a second-round state playoff contest on March 7.

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