Thursday's 2A Boys Basketball: Bearcats Top Tigers, Prepare for Districts

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Cade Haller scored a team-high 16 points, Tyler Speck added 14 and the Bearcats ran away with a 71-49 win over rival Centralia in the regular-season finale for both teams on Thursday.

The Bearcats are the No. 2 seed in the District 4 playoffs and hosts the Greater Saint Helens League’s No. 3 seed at 7 p.m. on Feb. 15. It is a double elimination format.

W.F. West (15-5, 8-2) shot 46 percent from the field against Centralia. Kayden Kelly had eight points and a game-high 13 assists. Seth Hoff also added eight points.

The Tigers were led by Alejandro Valencia’s game-high 18 points. Jason Baum had 10 points, nine rebounds and six assists for an all-around effort. Derek Beairsto tallied 12 points on the night. Six seniors played their final games in Tiger uniforms: Baum, Beairsto, Matt House, Nolan Rice, Jeremy Wood and Zachary Kaiser. Centralia’s season ends at 3-17, 2-8.

“At times it was frustrating,” Centralia coach Kyle Donahue said. “The team worked hard and had a good defensive presence throughout the season. Offensively, we never got it going and never found a rhythm. It was a group that worked hard, was fun to be around and had good attitudes every day. Proud of the seniors. They set a good example.”

Warriors End Season Winless

ROCHESTER — The Warriors couldn’t keep up with a much-taller Aberdeen squad in a 52-37 2A Evergreen Conference defeat at home in the regular-season final for both teams Thursday.

Five-foot freshman Jyson O’Conner led the Warriors with a team-high nine points. Cody Weddle had seven and Ben Clouse five. The Warriors shot 30 percent on the night.

Rochester ends its season winless at 0-20, 0-10.

“Came into a program that’s been down for a while,” Rochester’s first-year coach Derrick Pringle said. “When you take JV and C-team players, you have talent but not the experience.”

Pringle entered this season with just two returning varsity players, neither of whom had logged significant varsity minutes. Now he’s returning nine underclassmen who all got crucial playing time.

“When they come back next year they’ll be ready,” Pringle said.

Two seniors played their final high school games, Jared Winters and Cody Weddle. Pringle said he’s hopeful next year will be a step forward for the program.

“A lot of people doubted if I could come in and change this program,” Pringle said. “Change is coming.”

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