PENDLETON — Last week, the Pendleton girls suffered one of their season’s toughest losses. On Tuesday, they recouped for one of their season’s biggest wins.
The Buckaroos eclipsed their Redmond visitors by 20 points in the first quarter alone, and never allowed more than nine points per quarter, including a combined eight points in the second half, as they rolled to an easy 74-25 Intermountain Conference victory over the Panthers on Warberg Court.
“Last Friday was an anomaly,” Pendleton head coach Kevin Porter said. “It has nothing to do with winning or losing — it’s how you play. Tonight, we made a concerted effort to play basketball, and play it our way. We did that tonight.”
Pendleton’s biggest quarter of the night came early as they opened the first quarter with a 12-4 run that spanned two and a half minutes. Redmond got early baskets from sophomore post Skyla Gonzales and senior forward Ellie Corwin, but the Bucks capped off the quarter with a 13-point run to take a 20-point advantage. Sophomore Muriel Hoisington contributed six points and an assist to the streak.
“We wanted to be the press,” Porter said. “We wanted to be the team who’s bringing the attack, and control the tempo of the game, just like any team would want to.”
Pendleton sophomore Chloe Taber sunk her first of four 3-pointers of the night in the opening seconds of quarter two, and the Panthers were held scoreless for nearly five minutes. The Bucks ended up 41-17 at the half.
“We came out strong,” Taber said. “It was a pretty big lead. We just worked hard. We never took a break.”
Taber added another trey to Pendleton’s 12-point run that opened the third quarter. Redmond was once again held away from the hoop for the first five minutes. Panthers sophomore forward Alyssa McConnell snapped the run with a basket with three minutes left, and Gonzales got two at the line in the quarter’s last three minutes.
Gonzales and freshman post Emily Snyder were the only two Panthers to score in the final eight minutes. Taber ended the game with her fourth and final 3-pointer with 39 seconds left to play.
“Our 2-3 zone was working really well,” Taber said, “and we had a lot of help from our substitutes. We kept fresh legs on the court. That really helped us a lot.”
Taber led Pendleton (11-5, 3-1 IMC) with 15 points. Junior Josie Wilson and sophomore Daisy Jenness followed with 13 points each. Hoisington finished with 10. Junior Natalie Neveau led the Bucks on boards with eight.
Gonzales led the Panthers (2-13, 1-3 IMC) with seven points, who are now ranked fifth in the league after last year’s conference championship.
“They graduated seven players off of last year’s team,” Porter said. “We showed up to play. We executed on offense and defense. We’re the reason they might have looked the way they did.”
The Bucks hit the road to face top-ranked Ridgeview Ravens on Friday in a 6:30 p.m. tip-off.