Alexa Hazel and Oumou Toure have been the face of the Kamiakin girls basketball team since they were freshmen.
In their final season, the dynamic duo still is turning heads and scoring baskets. The two combined for 44 points Saturday, as the Braves ran past Hermiston 62-26 in a Mid-Columbia Conference game in Kennewick.
“Holy smokes,” Hermiston coach Juan Rodriguez said. “A team like that exposes you in so many areas. They are very athletic and they get in the passing lanes. I am disappointed that they got easy baskets off of turnovers, and layup after layup.”
Hazel had a game-high 23 points — 16 combined in the middle quarters — while Toure, who has signed to play basketball at Butler University, had 21.
“They work well together,” Kamiakin coach Lane Schumacher said of his top players. “Oumou has been special for us for four years. She is really talented, and they work well together. Alexa is a four-year starter, and when her shots are falling she is hard to stop.”
Hermiston’s Jordan Thomas scored the first two points of the game, but back-to-back buckets by Toure gave the Braves (11-0 overall, 7-0 MCC) the lead for good just 90 seconds into the contest.
Kamiakin went on a 6-0 run to end the first quarter with an 11-4 lead.
A 3-pointer by Hermiston’s Jazlyn Romero pulled the Bulldogs (4-7, 2-5) within 11-7 to start the second period, and a basket and a free throw by Thomas would be the end of the scoring for Hermiston as the Braves took a 26-10 lead at the half.
Kamiakin came out in the third and scored 14 consecutive points in a span of 1:23 to take a 42-14 lead and the rout was on.
“Our press gave them trouble and we generated a lot of points off that,” Schumacher said.
Thomas led the Bulldogs with 13 points, including eight in the third quarter. Romero added eight points. Only four players scored for Hermiston.
“We knew this was going to be a tall task,” Rodriguez said. “But you still have to come out and compete. In this league, every team is good. It forces them to understand they need to develop. It’s a humbling experience, which is good.”
Hermiston is back in action Tuesday, hosting Walla Walla to round out the first half the MCC season.