The Cougars could not defend home court against the Tigard Tigers, falling 53-44

HERALD PHOTO: TANNER RUSS - Tigard's Campbell Gray led her team in scoring, getting 34 points en route to her teams 53-44 victory on Friday, Jan. 19. Canby—Coming into Friday night's contest, the Canby Cougars were ranked 13th in the state and looked to jump a few notches in the rankings against the number two ranked Tigard Tigers. Canby had narrowly defeated Lake Oswego earlier in the week, and Tigard stomped Tualatin in its preceding game. Despite a strong second half, the home team could not overcome a disastrous first 16 minutes.

Canby started off the even with the Tigers, battling out to a 5-5 score. At that point though, the Tigard offense took to life scoring seven straight points, which included going three of four from the free throw line. Tigard sophomore Kennedy Brown had seven points in the first half. HERALD PHOTO: TANNER RUSS - Tigard sophomore Kennedy Brown had nine points against the Canby Cougars on Friday, Jan. 19.

For Canby, the first eight minutes were very one note. Senior Hannah Myers had all the points for Canby in the quarter, and when the first buzzer blew it was Tigard leading 8-12. HERALD PHOTO: TANNER RUSS - Canby senior Hannah Myers led the team scoring with 16 points in their game against Tigard. The Cougars lost 53-44 on Friday, Jan. 19.

The second quarter saw Tigard junior Campbell Gray explode offensively. The 5'8 post scored 15 points in the second quarter, and 20 points in the first half. Gray was so dynamic in the half that she scored Tigard's first five baskets in the second quarter, and seven of her teams ten in the second frame.

"I think that Canby is for sure one of the harder teams in the league, so coming out I knew we had to be aggressive so I just took what they gave me," Gray said after the game.

Canby had little answer for the visiting team's offense, but they were also confounded by the defense as well. The Cougars scored only four points in the second quarter, and two of them came from the free throw line. Heading into the locker rooms at halftime, the Tigers led the Cougars 34-12.

If Canby was going to get the win in the second half, they were going to need to author one of the more impressive comebacks of the year. And to their credit, the Cougars gave it their all.

In the third quarter, it was a near reversal of the second. Canby's defense held the Tigard to just one basket the entire eight minutes. Part of that was double-teaming Gray, Tigard's lead scorer.

"She's a main part of the team," Canby's Hannah Myers said after the game. "She's the one who's passing it and scoring it, so we knew that if we wanted to have a chance to win, we'd have to shut down their main player."

The Cougars got things started with a Nicole Mickelson field goal, and utilized their defense to score off of takeaways. Sophomore Naarai Gomez scored the next basket off of a takeaway, and had another to her credit later on in the quarter.

Seniors Cassidy Posey, Alice Lambert, and Hannah Myers would all chip in baskets in the third quarter and by the time the clock struck zero, it was 26-36 for Tigard. Canby had more than halved their deficit. HERALD PHOTO: TANNER RUSS - Canby senior Cassidy Posey had 12 points in the game against Tigard. Canby fell to the visiting Tigers 53-44 on Friday, Jan. 19.

In the fourth quarter, Tigard would come back to life. Gray scored 12 more points in the final stanza, and helped her team maintain its lead. At various points, Canby narrowed the deficit to single digits, but could not come close to sealing the deal. By the end of the game, it was Tigard over Canby 53-44.

Canby (10-5 overall, 5-2 in Three Rivers League play) goes on to play at Lakeridge (8-6 overall, 2-4 in TRL play) on Tuesday, Jan. 23. Tigard (12-3 overall, 7-0 in TRL play) will face Lake Oswego (5-10 overall, 2-5 in TRL play) on Tuesday, Jan. 23.

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