MADRAS – The Sherman Huskies shot 33 percent from the floor, committed 17 turnovers and had a season-low point total in their 45-35 loss to Horizon Christian Saturday in the boys district title game in Madras.
As the No. 1-ranked team in the state, Sherman set aspirations of making a return trip to Baker City.
Saturday’s loss provided a new route to take, so all is not lost for a team that posted a 23-3 record on the year.
“That’s what we were talking to them about after the game was that players are going to face a lot of obstacles in life and now we have an opportunity to go out and kind of re-energize ourselves,” Sherman head coach Gary Lewis said. “We did make a lot of mistakes, but not taking anything from Horizon, they played a phenomenal ballgame tonight.”
The No. 4 Hawks (18-6) outscored Sherman in every quarter of play, jumping ahead 21-17 at halftime and 32-23 through three periods.
Horizon’s biggest lead was 44-29 with 3:31 left in the game.
Caleb Lingel put up 16 points, four rebounds and three assists; Alex Petshow tacked on 10 points, two rebounds and two steals; and Derek Johnston finished with eight points, seven rebounds, three assists and two steals to lead Horizon Christian.
The Hawks, who have won eight district titles under Lingel, defeated Arlington 53-48 in their district opener.
Horizon head coach Darrin Lingel had his group dealing with a couple of injuries late in the year, but some time off due to weather issues proved to come at the right time.
“It’s a testament to their tenacity, their fight and their competitive spirit to win and to compete,” Lingel said. “That’s what these guys do. They play hard, they work hard, and they make mistakes like everyone else, but they fight through those. We have been trying to get better in every game and we got better today. We know we have more business at hand. This is one of our goals and our next goal is to make it to Baker, so we will get prepared for that on Friday.”
Keenan Coles dropped 18 points, seven rebounds and three steals; Luke Martin finished with eight points, 10 rebounds, five assists and two steals; Caleb Fritts added five points and five boards; and Wade Fields contributed four points and two steals to pace the Huskies, who hosted North Clackamas Christian Tuesday in a state sub-round contest.
“Their character is going to show in how we respond,” Lewis said. “When you are faced with adversity, when you get knocked down in life, then you have an opportunity to step up and make things right, learn from your mistakes and take on the new challenges you are faced with. It is bigger than the game of basketball and I hope that is exactly what we get out of this.”