UMATILLA - Haylee Farrar drilled a runner in the lane as time expired Saturday, sending the No. 1 Condon Blue Devils to the OSAA/US Bank/Les Schwab Class 1A state tournament held in Baker City March 5-8.
"I looked up and saw three seconds left and I knew if I missed it we were going to overtime and if I make it we're going," Farrar said. "I wasn't sure if it was good and I was standing under the basket, praying that it would go in."
Farrar capped an 11-point, come-from-behind 43-41 win over the South Wasco County Redsides (21-4 overall), extending the Blue Devils (20-6 overall) state tournament appearance to eight straight years. The defending state champions outscored the Redsides 17-6 in the fourth quarter and finished the game on a 7-2 run over the last four minutes.
Condon trailed 37-26 after South Wasco County's Casi Warnock drilled a jumper with a little more than seven minutes left, before Katee Humphrey drilled back-to-back 3-pointers for Condon.
"To start off I wasn't feeling so hot, but it came to me," Humphrey said. "I never really doubted and I knew we were all capable of stepping up."
Farrar then added a jumper, but Megan Rinearson who scored a team-high 14 points, responded with a bucket down low for the Redsides. After a pair of free throws by Farrar, Jessica Snyder came up with a steal and Humphrey again drilled a 3-pointer with 4:05 left, knotting the game at 39.
"Katee's 3s were pretty crucial and she's a competitor," Condon head coach Teresa Humphrey said.
South Wasco County answered with Rinearson scoring down low, but Condon found Snyder in the low post to tie the game at 41 with 3:13 remaining. Both teams forced back-to-back jump balls, before Farrar caused another crucial tie-up with 1:25 remaining, handing the Blue Devils possession.
Katee Humphrey dribbled the ball past mid-court and stood with the ball in a stall offense and South Wasco County elected to stay back in its defense and allow Condon to run time off the clock.
"I was surprised they didn't put pressure us," coach Humphrey said. "Our free throw shooting has been horrible recently."
"When they stalled at our place, we pressured them and they scored at will. We also thought we were playing well defensively," South Wasco County head coach Vince Drago said. "It came down to them hitting a big shot and we're going home."
Coach Humphrey called a timeout with 9.8 seconds left and designed a play for Katee Humphrey, who had the hot hand, but the defense collapsed on her and Farrar was able to get free for the game winning shot.
"I knew the girls had it in them, but in the first half the girls were doubting themselves," coach Humphrey said.
Condon struggled in the first half offensively and turnovers led to a 24-19 halftime deficit. The Blue Devils used full-court pressure in the third quarter to keep the game close, but a Rinearson 3-pointer at the buzzer gave South Wasco County a 35-26 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
"We made up some ground in the third quarter, then went down again," coach Humphrey said. "But in the huddle to start the fourth quarter they started looking in each others eyes and started to believe."
Humphrey, Snyder and Farrar scored 41 of the Blue Devils 43 points. Humphrey finished with a game-high 15 points, Snyder added 14 points and Farrar scored 12 points.
"Katee hit some big shots and it's credit to her," Drago said. "We came here to advance to the state tournament and we came up a little short."