By Jeremy McDonald
TURNER, Ore.– St. Paul stepped up their game against Crosshill Christian in the 1A Casco League match-up Tuesday night in Turner. Stepping up their intensity against a traditionally strong program that saw them neck-and-neck with them going into the fourth quarter down 31-30.
Warren Rose led the Buckaroos in the game with 23 points, using his six-foot-six-inch frame to make Noah Dallum and the Eagle defense collapse on the senior St. Paul post to help keep the Bucks momentum going.
“We just got to have each other’s backs. Trust each other…we just had to bring our best,” Rose said.
“We knew that he was going to be a big, big part of their offense and bring it down to him. So we wanted our wings to get on the side and not be on the inside, but be on helping. It was good for us to pressure him at least knowing he’s going to get buckets, but trying to contain him as much as possible,” adds Zach Wilson.
Crosshill Christian went on a 8-0 run to start the fourth quarter, it was similar to their 10-4 run they had in the second quarter that turned a 12-8 deficit into a 18-16 halftime lead. But those runs, both the second quarter run and this one to start the fourth, the Bucks responded. They tied it at 20 early in the third quarter and they drew themselves back to within four with 1:33 left in the game.
With how this game was playing out, with the talent that St. Paul, Crosshill, Perrydale and Willamette Valley Christian bring to the table in league, games like these with the physicality, scrappiness and passion will come and make it some fun games now that league is in full swing.
(This game) was intense. A lot of hard work and everyone did a great job, can’t wait to see them next game and we’re hoping that we’ll come out on top,” Rose starts. “We need to make some better passes, I think that was the biggest thing. Turnovers got us at the end. We got to bring our A-Game and practice hard, go 100-percent in practice.”
Those turnovers and stops on defense helped Crosshill shut the door on their eighth win of the season. Wilson points to their strong second half as the reason that helped lift them over the top in the 47-39 home victory as they head over the Marion Bridge Friday to play at Falls City against the Mountaineers.
“This game was tough, especially after scoring six points in the first quarter. It wasn’t a strong start, but we brought up the energy at halftime and it helped us a lot. Getting boards on offense was good in getting us second chance opportunities in games like these,” Wilson said. “Offensively we were rushing ourselves in the first quarter, so if we can look into that and slow down at the start of our next game, especially a big one like this one, it’ll be good for us to get a head start.”
Wilson finished with eight points, Dallum led Crosshill Christian with 17 points with Kyler Hemelstrand contributed another seven for the Eagles. St. Paul, who hosts C.S. Lewis Academy on Friday, saw Carter Milroy add another five points in the game for the Buckaroos.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald