St. Paul Advances To State Title Game

By Jeremy McDonald

BAKER CITY, Ore.—It’s weird to think that girls’ sports at St. Paul have not lost a game this season and it’s already March.

Following their 55-33 win over Damascus Christian Friday night at Baker High School, they pushed their streak to 58 straight wins as a girl’s sports department.  But that isn’t on the forefront as much as their 58th win had put them in:

The 1A State Championship.

The last time that the Buckaroos were in the State Title game, it was 2012 when they finished second and if they get their 59th win over Powder Valley Saturday night at 9pm, then they’ll be bringing home their first State Title in more than a decade.

“This is amazing,” said Diana Hernandez of the win. “Honestly really happy that I get to enjoy this with my team.  This is my first-time playing for a State Championship.  I think this is going to be a really fun experience for all of us and I’m hoping that we do amazing in this tournament .”

Erin Counts (25) coming down with one of her 17 rebounds in Friday night’s Semi-Final win (Picture By Jeremy McDonald)

Hernandez scored 13 points to two steals in the 1A State Semi-Final game.

The St. Paul defense held the Eagles to seven first quarter points and only allowed Damascus Christian to score in double-digits once with 12 second quarter points as they settled down after an interesting first game performance against Joesph.

In their Elite 8 opener, the Lady Bucks committed 24 turnovers  and shot 29.4-percent from the line.  They only committed eight turnovers Friday and pushed their free throw percentage to 45.8-percent entering the Championship game.

And with Powder Valley showcasing their ability to be aggressive at the ball, turning a 12-point lead to two against Cascao League rival Perrydale in the first half and outscoring the Pirates 16-2 in the fourth quarter to pull away Friday night.

Diana Hernandez (12) bringing down a pass from a teammate during the second half against Damascus Christian (Picture By Jeremy McDonald)

With the stage being as big as it is, St. Paul will look to one another to come together and help the squad to get the job done from first whistle to final whistle Saturday.  From those who were on the Volleyball team to new to the big stage, it is the State Championship game where the lights are at it’s brightest.

“I think just talk to each other just calm everyone down, explain how it goes.  It’s just another game like what we’ve been doing all year.  Try to take it one-play at a time and not to hang our heads and just try to stay calm,” said Isabelle Wyss.

Wyss finished with 14 points and grabbed 15 rebounds.  Erin Counts had 17 points and 17 rebounds, Emma Connor collected 13 rebounds in the win.


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