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PREP BASKETBALL: Post Falls opens — finally — with win

| December 18, 2020 1:15 AM

• BOYS

MIDDLETON — The Post Falls boys basketball team finally opened its season on Thursday, getting strong play from its bench in a 44-41 victory over the newly named Pocatello Thunder in the first round of the Ridley’s Christmas Tournament at Middleton High.

Alex Horning scored 15 points, James Lee 11, Caden McLean 10 for the Trojans, playing for the first time since falling to Borah of Boise in the state 5A title game in early March.

Horning and Isaac Ballew each had nine rebounds.

“Our bench really played well,” Post Falls coach Mike McLean said. “Jaxon Anderson, Tommy Hauser, Zack Rodriguez and Jack Sciortino gave us very good minutes. And Isaac Ballew played a very good game, defensively and rebounding.”

Post Falls shot 17 of 46 from the field, including 4 of 18 on 3-pointers, and “I was happy with the shots we were taking,” McLean said. “We missed a lot of baskets that we typically made in the past. We have to be more efficient.”

Freshman Julian Bowie led all scorers with 16 points for Pocatello (3-1), whose school board voted earlier this week to change the school mascot from Indians.

“Pocatello was really fired up to play us,” McLean said. “Pocatello runs as good a dribble-drive as I’ve seen.”

Post Falls plays Madison (5-1) of Rexburg tonight at 5 PST in the semifinals. Madison defeated Vallivue of Caldwell 79-48.

“There’s no doubt there’s an advantage,” McLean said to Pocatello having had three games under its belt already. “But we’re senior-heavy, we have a lot of experience. We just have to play better.”

Pocatello 10 8 8 15 — 44

Post Falls 7 11 16 10 — 41

POCATELLO — Evans 2, Bowie 16, Vaughan 0, Nielsen 0, Payne 7, Hottel 0, Killian 8, Christiansen 8,

POST FALLS — Anderson 0, McLean 10, Hauser 2, Rodriguez 0, Rutherford 3, Ballew 3, Sciortino 0, Lee 11, Horning 15.

Lake City 53

Century 44

MIDDLETON — Blake Buchanan totaled 14 points, 10 rebounds and five blocked shots for the Timberwolves, who led by 20 late in the first half en route to the win over the Diamondbacks in the first round of the Ridley’s Christmas Tournament at Middleton High.

“I thought this was, without question, our best effort — in particular, our energy and our excitement,” Lake City coach Jim Winger said. “Defensively, we were really, really good. When we made free throws and attack the basket, we’re really good.”

Kolton Mitchell added 13 points and four assists for Lake City (4-0), which was 17 of 21 from the free-throw line.

“We were pretty darn good out of the gate tonight,” Winger said. “Our team defense was excellent.”

Issac Panttaja led Century (5-2) with 11 points.

Lake City will face host Middleton in a semifinal game tonight at 6:45 PST. Middleton defeated Minico 52-39.

Century 11 5 10 18 — 44

Lake City 16 14 8 15 — 53

CENTURY — Lee 3, Williams 6, Holt 7, B. Fleischmann 8, Tolman 2, T. Fleischmann 8, I. Panttaja 10.

LAKE CITY — Buchanan 14, Janke 4, Irvin 4, Kiesbuy 5, Spellman 0, Johnson 6, Mitchell 13, Meredith 7.

• GIRLS

• GIRLS

Coeur d’Alene 51

Timberlake 42

SPIRIT LAKE — Skylar Burke tallied 16 points and Tori Younker hit a pair of big 3-pointers in the fourth quarter as the visiting 5A Vikings beat the 3A Tigers.

Timberlake (6-2) pulled within a basket midway through the fourth quarter, but Younker hit two 3s in an 8-0 run that gave Coeur d’Alene (6-0) some breathing room.

“They beat us up on the boards pretty good,” Timberlake coach Matt Miller said. “Their size and athleticism gave us problems.”

Younker finished with 12 points, Madi Symons 10 for Coeur d’Alene, which returns to action Monday at Lakeland.

McKennah Kronenberg led Timberlake with nine points, and Tiger stars Brooke Jessen and Taryn Soumas added eight points each.

“They (the Vikings) gave them a lot of attention,” MIller said. “Our other kids stepped up. I was happy with how kids shared the ball, and other people stepping up and making shots.”

Timberlake’s only two losses have been to the Vikings, including a 51-44 decision at Coeur d’Alene in the season opener.

“We’re not going to see anybody as good as them the rest of the year,” Miller said. “To know we can compete with a team of that caliber should give the girls a lot of confidence.”

Timberlake plays host to Lakeside on Saturday.

Coeur d’Alene 16 10 9 16 — 51

Timberlake 12 11 8 11 — 42

COEUR d’ALENE — Matheson 2, Brainard-Adams 4, Whiteman 3, Symons 10, Johnson 0, Younker 12, Chavez 4, Froehlich 0, Burke 16.

TIMBERLAKE — T. Soumas 8, Hammond 8, Kronenberg 9, C. Soumas 3, Carhart 2, Jessen 8, Bain 4.