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Day: December 12, 2016

Lady Celts stunned at West Albany

McNary sophomore Abigail Hawley had 10 points off the bench in a 48-41 loss at West Albany.
McNary sophomore Abigail Hawley had 10 points off the bench in a 48-41 loss at West Albany.

By DEREK WILEY
Of the Keizertimes

ALBANY—McNary girls basketball coach Derick Handley said before the season started that the Greater Valley Conference had improved.

At West Albany, he found out just how much as the Lady Celts opened league play Friday, Dec. 9 with a 48-41 loss.

MHS swept the Bulldogs last season, outscoring them 128-58.

“They’re improved,” Handley said of West Albany. “They’re a better team than they were a year ago. You’ve got to give them credit. They knocked down some shots that a year ago they weren’t able to do. They have two of the best post players (Georgia Smith and Saylor Siegner) in the league if not the best post players in the league. I think we had a little bit of a mismatch there.”

The two teams played to a 4-4 tie through the first quarter as the Lady Celts struggled to attack West Albany’s zone defense.

“Honestly, I think yesterday we had a snow day,” Handley said. “We didn’t get to practice because of Salem-Keizer rules so it really made it difficult for us to implement a game plan other than just talk to the girls today and show them the film. We didn’t get to walk through.”

The scoring picked up in the second quarter as sophomore Abigail Hawley came off the bench to knock down a 3-pointer and give McNary a 9-6 lead. But the Bulldogs answered with a 3-pointer of their own to tie the game. Senior Sydney Hunter then picked up two quick fouls and went to the bench.

In Hunter’s absence, Hawley continued to lead on the offensive end, making another 3-pointer, despite being fouled, to give MHS a 14-11 lead. She then knocked down the free throw to complete the 4-point play.

West Albany kept answering but two baskets by McNary junior Paige Downer kept the Lady Celts on top, 22-21, with less than a minute remaining in the second quarter. However, the Bulldogs scored five points in the final 15 seconds, including a long 3-pointer at the buzzer to lead 26-22 at intermission.

Playing a smaller lineup, McNary, led by Hunter and Kailey Doutt, opened the second half on a 10-0 run to go ahead 32-26 with 3:17 remaining in the third quarter.

Smith ended the run with a field goal and added a 3-pointer to get West Albany within 34-30. Hunter then picked up her fourth foul with 1:18 left in the third.

After the Bulldogs got within 34-32, Hawley knocked down another 3-pointer at the 1:02 mark but that was the last field goal the Lady Celts would make.

The Bulldogs opened the fourth quarter on a 12-2 run to take a 45-39 lead with only 2:30 remaining.

After Hunter made two free throws to get McNary within 41-45, Jaylene Montano then forced a West Albany turnover to give the Lady Celts a chance.

However, MHS turned the ball right back over and weren’t able score the rest of the night.

“There’s a lot of excuses we can make but ultimately they played harder,” Handley said. “Loose balls, they got them, we didn’t. We didn’t rebound very well tonight. We didn’t shoot very well tonight. It was a combination of a lot of things. You’ve got to get them credit.”

The Lady Celts were 4-for-21 from behind the 3-point arc.

“We struggled as a team just settling for outside jump shots,” Handley said. “We’re not a 3-point shooting team. For some reason today we thought we were. We weren’t aggressive with the dribble. We didn’t attack their zone. We didn’t look short corner ever and we had a lot of openings there.”

Despite foul trouble, Hunter was able to post a double-double of 14 points and 13 rebounds. Hawley and Doutt each had 10 points.

The loss was the first for McNary, who opened the season 3-0.

“This is one, we’re going to show the film, we’re going to learn from it,” Handley said. “Hopefully, it’s the last time we have to show film like this. There’s a lot to learn. There’s a lot to learn from early games. I wish it wasn’t a league game. I wish it wasn’t a learning moment in our first league game. This was not quite how we were looking to kick it off this year.”

Lady Celts start 3-0

McNary senior Sydney Hunter had a double-double of 14 points and 11 rebounds against Barlow. (KEIZERTIMES/Derek Wiley)
McNary senior Sydney Hunter had a double-double of 14 points and 11 rebounds against Barlow. (KEIZERTIMES/Derek Wiley)

By DEREK WILEY
Of the Keizertimes

With the graduation of three of its top four scorers, McNary is looking for girls to step up and put the ball in the basket.

For game one, it was Jaylene Montano and Kailey Doutt, who combined for 27 points as the Lady Celts rolled past Barlow 58-23 at home on Thursday, Dec. 1.

Montano, a senior point guard, knocked down two three-pointers in the first 1:05 to give McNary a quick 6-0 lead.

“Coach (Derick Handley) has been telling me to shoot more and said I’m taking a new role this year and just be confident with it so I kind of took that on,” Montano said. “He said miss or make, keep shooting. I was just following what he was saying.”

Doutt, a junior, finished with 12 points, including six in the first half as the Lady Celts went into intermission with a commanding 26-7 lead.

Montano’s hot shooting continued in the second half as she made three more 3-pointers in the third quarter to finish the game with 15 points by going a perfect 5-for-5 from behind the arc.

With McNary up 47-15, Montano didn’t play in the fourth quarter.

“Her (Montano) and Kailey Doutt are two girls that we’ve talked a lot to the last couple of days,” Handley said. “For us to be successful we need them to have confidence in the outside shot and for Jaylene I think the first one falling kind of got her going for the rest of the day. I’m hoping that it can be consistent. It’s not one of those she needs to make the first one to keep it going but she is such a steady player for us.

“I talked a lot about trying to stay level emotionally, she’s the prime example of it. She’ll never get too frustrated. She never gets too excited, even today she hits her 3-pointers and she comes into the locker room and she’s embarrassed about it. She’s going to have a really good year and she’s a girl that will surprise a lot of people.”

Senior Sydney Hunter got into foul trouble, picking up her third on a charge three minutes into the second quarter, but still managed a double-double of 14 points and 11 rebounds.

In her absence, sophomores Abigail Hawley and Anita Lao got more playing time.

Hawley finished with three points, five assists and four rebounds.

Lao added five points, two assists and three rebounds.

“Sydney coming out, I think it was frustrating for her, but honestly for the team it might not be the worst thing in the world,” Handley said. “It made a lot of other girls step up. I knew they (Hawley and Lao) were both going to play a lot for us but the fact that we could put both of them in at the same time with our back up post (Kelsey Koenig), between those three to make a run like they did to end the half, ultimately it’s going to be better for our team, just help us with a little bit of depth. I know it was frustrating for Sydney. It was her first game of her senior year but hopefully she’s going to have 28 more opportunities and we’ll work on keeping her in there.”

Koenig finished with four points and three rebounds off the bench.

Committing fouls was a problem for the Lady Celts in the first half. Barlow was in the double bonus midway through the second quarter but went just 3-for-10 from the free throw line in the first half. The Lady Bruins were also held to just two field goals, one in each quarter.

“Our game plan, we’ve been talking about it for the past week, that we need to play with our feet and we go out there and I think the emotions had a lot to do with it, play with our hands,” Handley said. “I thought in the first half we played way too emotional, a lot of nerves, start of the year so you never know what you’re going to get. It’s also the first time in six months that we’ve played somebody other than ourselves. I thought it took us a good quarter and a half to settle but once we did, we slowed things down and I thought execution got a lot better.”

The Lady Celts got revenge on Tualatin Saturday, Dec. 3.

The Lady Timberwolves had won the two previous matchups but McNary won the latest 55-51.

Doutt had 18 points, eight rebounds, three assists and two steals. Hunter was also in double figures with 14 points, nine rebounds, three assists and three blocks.

The Lady Celts improved to 3-0 Tuesday, Dec. 6 with a 44-43 win at Sheldon.

Hunter had another double-double of 16 points and 15 rebounds to go along with three assists, four steals and three blocks.

Doutt added 12 points and nine rebounds..

McNary opens GVC play Friday, Dec. 9 at West Albany.