By Jeremy McDonald
KEIZER, Ore.– West Salem once again found a way of getting it done when it matters the most.
In games past since Central Valley Conference league play started, they’ve pulled away from South Salem, hung on against Sprague and against McNary, rolled with the waves of the high’s and the low’s in their 74-62 road victory. Proving that they’re able to shut the door on teams when they need to as they finished the first loop through CVC play undefeated at 4-0 and pushing their winning streak to seven games..
“They’re adrenaline filled. There’s highs-and-lows, emotions are everywhere and it’s really keeping that composure and being able to work through to the final whistle is what is going to decide the game every time. It keeps it entertaining and fun,” the Titans Jimmy Lathen said. “We haven’t hit our ceiling yet. Every game, every practice we’re looking at getting better so we’re competing with these top teams in State and have a really good run at the State Playoffs.”
Lathen led the way with 27 points, Jackson Leach added another 20 points for West Salem who led 21-14 after one quarter. But things got tight going into halftime and going into the fourth quarter with the Celtics hanging tough down three at those two breaks 35-32 at halftime and 51-48 going to the fourth quarter.
Brody Roth led the way with 21 points for McNary. Steven Adams contributed another 12 and Jando Gonzalez added another 11 with the Celts knocking on the door of a win before the little things and missed opportunities that went against McNary and allowed the Titans to shut the door on the threat. The defeat puts the Celtics into a three-way tie with the Olympians and Saxons for second-place in league as the loss came on the heels of another tough defeat to South Salem back on Monday.
“It’s ok, we’re competing the whole time. Shots didn’t fall at the end like we wanted them to, this is a good league and it’s anybody’s league really. A couple of close games with South, North (Salem) and West,” Roth said. “Just keep our heads up. Have faith in our shots and our teammates and keep competing.”
McNary hosts Sprague on Monday while the Titans travel once more to play North Salem on Monday. Both games start at 6:30pm.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald