Sports -- March 07, 2002

Published on Thu, Mar 7, 2002
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Girls nip Nooksack, take district
By Neil Macdonald
Blaine’s Lady B’s nipped Nooksack Valley’s Lady P’s 56-55 to win the Class 2A Northwest District title on March 1 at Mt. Vernon and gain the district’s top-seeding at the girls 2A State basketball championships in Yakima March 6-9.
The B’s and P’s game was a matter of minding one’s P’s and Q’s. NV played aggressively and effectively, but suffered the consequences of pursuing a “take no prisoners” game plan, gathering 23 fouls to Blaine’s 13, and losing their best snipers, Shelley Harder and Devin Dykstra, who each fouled out.
Harder’s banishment, early in Q4, weakened NV considerably. Combined with Dykstra’s dismissal in the final minute of play, it was devastating, putting LC’s top guns on the bench when a lone deuce could have preserved the title for the defending district champion Pioneers.
The game saw Porcia Jackson drop a deuce to give the Lady P’s a 4-2 lead at 2:04 of the first quarter. NV kept ahead, even extending their lead to 14 points late in Q2, for three seconds less than 25 minutes before Blaine’s Becky Riddle tied things 47-47 with 5 minutes left in Q4.
The score seesawed from the Lady B’s to Lady P’s. The suspense went from tense to intense when Shela Robertson gave Blaine a 52-50 edge with 3:20 left. It reached the high C’s (as in cardiac collapse) when two NV deuces and a free throw gave the Lady P’s a 55-52 lead with 1:31 to go.
But in the last 90 seconds, Blaine’s Kristina Francis and Jessica Summers each hit 2-for-2 from the free throw line, ignoring the 2002 tons of pressure that must have been on their minds. Francis’ pair of points closed the gap to 55-54, NV. Summers’ first tied it. Her second put Blaine up 56-55. It was enough.
With less than 60 secs left, NV charged back. Katie Robinson and Tiffany Passe missed jumpers. Passe intercepted an inbound pass with time left for a quick shot but the Pioneers never got it off. A scrum of Lady B’s and P’s ended on the floor with 0:04 left and a jump ball being called with the possession arrow pointing Borderite way.
Pat Green’s machine was led by Anna Sticklin (16 points), Riddle (13) and Summers (12).. .
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Boys top LC to win district
Blaine Borderites defeated Lynden Christian 63-52 on March 2 in Mt. Vernon to win the Class 2A Northwest District boys basketball championship and the North Cascades Conference’s top-seed slot in the 2002 State basketball tourney March 6-9 at Yakima.
The game was a thriller. Blaine led eight times, LC five times and the score was tied four times. The Borderites were ahead 19-16 after Q1, the Lyncs up 33-27 at the half and Blaine back in front 38-37 after Q3.
The Double B’s, who had lost 55-53 and 59-54 to LC in regular season play, surged into their final lead when Skyler Anderson and Ryan Pike sank successive 3-pointers while their LC counterparts missed a pair of trey tries. About two minutes were left to play and Blaine was up 52-46.
When the clock ran down to 1:26, the Lyncs were forced into foul mode. This necessary but desperate strategy found LC fighting a war on two fronts, pitting their floor shooting against Blaine’s foul shooting and the clock. The Borderites foul line shooting was too good and the time left too short for the Lyncs. Blaine won this mini-battle, outscoring LC 11-6.
Pike put in a three-adjective performance – marvelous, magnificent, magical – as he tallied 24 points, 6 assists, 5 boards and 3 steals. Keith Williams added 19 points; Skyler Anderson, 6; Cory Crews, 6; Jake Gilmore, 4; Grant Sanders, 2 and Brendan Mulholland, 2. LC’s 4-H club – Hafford, Hoekema, Heerspink and Holleman – scored 45 of the Lyncs’ 52 points. Paul got 23; AJ, 8; Daren, 8; and Mark, 6. .
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Blaine midfielder in title game
WFC Rangers took a 2-0 decision from FC Kitsap 85 in Girls U-16 soccer on March 2 at Civic Stadium to take the Washington State Youth Soccer Fred Meyer Commissioners’ Cup and state championship.

Gosia Siwiec and Becca Vanry got the Rangers goals on a pair of assists from Rachelle Saletto. Blaine’s Krista Jones, a regular with the Rangers played outside left midfield in the title game. Lady B basketball team member Shela Robertson, who is also on the Rangers roster, did not play in the title game..
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