By Jeremy McDonald
SALEM, Ore.– The first quarter of Salem Academy and Cascade Christian seemed to be all but dominated following Austin Miller’s near half-court three-pointer that gave the Crusaders a then 18-9 lead on the Challengers.
The Crusaders played up-tempo and crisped in Cascade Christian’s stunning close-game win Monday afternoon at Corban University.
“It was a good first quarter but then, we just kind of..I don’t know. I felt like it was a close game the whole time and then in that last quarter it just slipped away,” said Bennett Bos. “We looked like we didn’t come ready to play today.”
The downside of a promising start to the game, were the little things. Turnovers hurt Salem Academy in the second quarter, six of their seven first half turnovers came in the second frame. The rebound game damaged the Crusader flow as well, but Salem Academy led 31-26 at halftime with them battling and competing knowing Amity is on the horizon for them Tuesday night.
“It’s a big part of the game. Every little turnover is another possession, two-or-three points. Offensive rebounds, extra shots,” said Bos. “Little things we need to take care of in practice. Coming in and focus in on practice, run our stuff and play our game how we’re able to play. So yeah, it’s important to focus in on the little things.”
Both squads traded the lead throughout the second half. It didn’t seem like either team could truly pull away from the other as they came down to the wire.
Bos finished with 18 points, same as the Challengers Dominic Lewis. Miller, who finished with 12, hit a three to put the Crusaders ahead 54-53 and Luke Miller, who finished with 16, pushed the lead to 55-53 moments later.
Cascade Christian would succeed at the end, as they edge the Salem Academy boys 58-55 for their 11th win of the season and handing the Crusaders just their third loss of the year at the Yoda MLK Showcase.