Walla Walla Community College
Women’s Basketball

WWCC women back to battle for title

Cierra Jo McKeown scores 45 points, leading the Warriors to a 92-64 win over Big Bend in a semi.

EVERETT, Wash. — Walla Walla Community College shot 48 percent from the floor here Saturday in NWAC final four women’s tournament action.

Cierra Jo McKeown shot 58 percent from the floor and scored 45 points.

The Warriors dominated Big Bend Communtiy College from start to finish in playing themselves into today’s NWAC Championship game. The Warriors ended the Vikings season with a 92-64 win.

The win moves the Warriors into a match up today at 5:15 with Umpqua for the NWAC 2018 women’s championship. Umpqua defeated Bellevue 103-70 Saturday night to earn its spot in the Championship battle. Both teams come into tonight’s game with identical 31-1 season records.

The Warriors wasted little time in setting the tone for the semifinal battle. Walla Walla ripped off a 24-15 lead after one and didn’t look back. The Warriors out scored the Vikings 27-14 in the second period and behind McKeown’s 27 first-half points, went to intermission with an insurmountable 51-29 lead.

The Vikings mini third period rally cut the Warrior lead to 19, 66-47, heading to the fourth. The Warriors kept the peddle to the metal and finsished this one on a 26-17 run to push the final to 92-64.

“We played really well offensively,” Warriors coach Bobbi Hazeltine said. “They made a run at us in the third and worried us a bit. They are a good team and hard to guard. We settled down.”

The Warriors did it all in this win. They hit eight treys, with McKeown hitting 7-of her-16 attempts from beyond the 3-point line. WWCC held Big Bend to a 3-of-19 night from beyond the arc. The Warrior defense, led by Jade Skidmore’s five steals, turned the Vikings over 20 times, while the Warrior offense had only 10 turnovers for the game. But it wasn’t quite perfect as Big Bend held a 40-39 rebounding advantage.

The show was McKeown and Skidmore. McKeown shot the lights out of the Everett gym with her 45-point effort on 18-of-31 shooting from the floor, and Skidmore finished one assist shy of a triple double. Skidmore scored 25, grabbed 10 rebounds, and dished out nine assists.

“She (McKeown) has put in so much time, she deserves everything she gets,” Hazeltine said of the Touchet sophomore. “Jade is just a player. She’s a play maker that does it all for us.”

McKeown’s 45 points sets a WWCC school record for single-game scoring and just misses the NWAC tournament record that was set Saturday night by Umpqua’s Dajanay Powell. Powell scored 47 in Umqua’s win over Bellevue.

“We were trying to get Cierra Jo the record in the fourth,” Hazeltine commented. “Our team is trully unselfish. The other girls did a great job in trying to get her the ball. It was pretty cool.”

Teresa Acock made the other Warrior triple and finished with seven points. Taylor Turner chipped in five points and grabbed six rebounds as did Adrianna Peralez.  Kortney Hutchison and McKenzie Gunter each chipped in four points as the Warriors won for the 31st time this season and raced into today’s championship battle with Umpqua.

“Their (Umpqua’s) shortest starter is 5-9, our tallest starter is 5-9,” Hazeltine said. “It (the championship game) will be a huge challenge. We are excited. We wanted to get back here and play for the championship. It has been a pleasure to coach them this year. Win or lose (Sunday), the season (31- wins) has been a success.”

WWCC 92, Big Bend 64

BIG BEND (64) — Gronning 19, Dougherty 14, Garrity 13, Martinez 11, Allan 5, Jansen 2. Totals 26-63 9-14 64.

WWCC (92) — McKeown 45, Skidmore 25, Acock 7, Turner 5, Hutchison 4, Gunter 4, Peralez 2, Andrews, Lyon, Bowen, Dietrich-Denton. Totals 39-81 6-10 92.



3-point goals — BB 3, WW 8. Total fouls — BB 12, WW 12. Fouled out — none. Technical fouls — none. Rebounds — BB 40, WW 39. Turnovers — BB 20, WW 10. Assists — BB 8, WW 15.

Union Bulletin

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