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Madi Olsen had nine points and four steals. Olivia Haines had nine points, seven rebounds and three blocks.

PMG PHOTO: DEREK WILEY - Colton senior Madi Olsen had nine points and four steals Friday against Central Linn.

In its first trip to the Class 2A playoffs in four years, Colton nearly pulled off the biggest upset of the first round.

The No. 14 Vikings battled No. 3 Central Linn to the wire Friday before falling 33-29 in Halsey.

"Obviously, we were hoping to win because that's how we go into every game," Colton coach Valerie Wakefield said. "But to play the No. 3 ranked team to a neck and neck game all the way through, it's awesome. It's not disappointing to lose to a very good team like that."

The Vikings played solid defense.

"The girls just played really smart," Wakefield said. "I think we gave them a lot of trouble with our defense. There were multiple possessions where they just didn't know where to go with the ball. We were practicing all week and I think my girls knew their personnel really well and what each player wanted to do. I'm extremely proud of that. To hold a team like that to 33 points is definitely something to be proud of."

Wakefield added the Vikings did a good job of keeping Central Linn out of the paint as well as avoiding any runs.

"Going in we knew they could all shoot, so they can score points," Wakefield said. "Another key for us was when they do hit a couple of shots, keep grinding and not let that affect us too much."

Colton senior Madi Olsen had nine points and four steals. Sophomore Olivia Haines had nine points, seven rebounds and three blocks. Senior Madi Beguelin added seven points and seven rebounds.

Seniors Olivia Spitzer and Courtney Weinberger played big roles in the Vikings defense.

"Really, everyone contributed," Wakefield said. "The little things that don't show up a stat sheet, like guarding on defense or diving on the floor for loose balls, and really all season and tonight, too, Courtney and Olivia were just huge for us there."

Colton's schedule, which included league games against Kennedy and Gervais, as well as non-league contests against Portland Christian and Coquille, also benefited the Vikings going into Central Linn.

"Those teams are all going to be in Pendleton," Wakefield said, referring to the Class 2A state tournament. "We've played tough teams all season long. I think that helped us tremendously going into tonight. I think that was huge. I think those games really matured us and prepared us to give Central Linn everything we could."

Derek Wiley
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