Indians sandwich a win over LaGrande between loss to Sweet Home and Baker during busy hoops weekend

Cold shooting on a cold night left the Molalla High girls basketball team on the short end of 45-36 decision Dec. 7 against visiting Sweet Home.

"At the end of the day it was a case of just not being able to find the bottom of the basket and needing to be more aggressive on offense," coach Phil Wiesner explained. "Sweet Home presented a unique challenge with an all-star guard carrying the load for them. Amy Wills actually did a good job over the course of the night with help from Ashley Goetz in controlling No. 4, but as a team we weren't consistent enough in stopping the next pass."

COURTESY PHOTO: PHIL WIESNER - Molalla and Sweet Home tip it off on Dec. 7.

Molalla played the Huskies close through three quarters, finding themselves down 9-8 after one and 22-20 at the half. They stay close in the third quarter, but a 12-5 run by Sweet Home in the fourth broke things open.

Offensively, Wiesner said the Indians did "a lot of good things" in running the offense "other than not recognizing the easy opportunities when they presented themselves and we had trouble finishing at the rim."

Amy Wills led the offense with seven points, while Cinthia Camacho came off the bench to hit a pair of three-pointers. Anna Parker added seven rebounds.

"We were able to cut in half the turnovers we've been battling with which was great to see," Wiesner continued. "The season is a journey, and the girls are great about getting back on the practice court and focusing on the next outing."

The Molalla girls basketball team finished up a busy week by hosting LaGrande on Dec. 10, then Baker on Dec. 11

Molalla 30, LaGrande 28

In the Friday opener, Molalla and LaGrande got involved in a defensive tussle, one that the Indians were able to survive for a 30-28 win.

"LaGrande was a final four team last season, but lost two starters to graduation," Coach Phil Wiesner explained. "It was a defensive battle from start to finish with neither team being able to get untracked on offense."

For the night, the Indians shot just under 29 percent from the floor and committed 28 turnovers.

"We put together a really good second quarter, which got us headed in a good direction, but we couldn't maintain," Wiesner said. "I have to give the girls all the credit, though, for just gutting out a rough game and pulling out the victory in the end."

Molalla was actually trailing LaGrande 28-25 with three minutes to go, but the defense locked in and held the visitors scoreless the rest of the way.

"Junior Amy Wills got a steal for us, scoring a breakaway lay-in to tie the game, then sophomore Kadenlee Greer followed with her own steal and breakaway laly-in to score the winning points," Wiesner said.

Greer led the offense with eight points, while Anna Parker added six and eight rebounds.

Baker 50, Molalla 33

"Baker figures to be a top-eight team this season in (Class) 4A...and I know our turnovers were high again," Wiesner said. "We got ourselves in foul trouble early, which really threw off what we wanted to do on rotations in the lineups.

"Baker has a strong inside game and since we were down our starting post Rubie Burge, who was on a recruiting trip to Arizona for tennis, we tried to counter with a zone defense," Wiesner added. "But without an inside presence, we were at a real disadvantage."

The Indians were able to stay in contact for most of the game, but Baker pulled away in the fourth quarter for the 17-point win.

Parker led the offense with eight points and Greer added seven.

Up this week is a Thursday tussle with Cascade and then a trip to Henley on Saturday.

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