Cole Beardsley
Philomath junior Cole Beardsley pulls up for a jump shot Saturday against Banks. Beardsley led all scorers with 17 points. (Photo by Brad Fuqua/Philomath News)

Philomath boys put up fight in 4th but end up falling short to Banks, 57-45

For a stretch early in the fourth quarter, it appeared as though Philomath just might stage a comeback after trailing visiting Banks by double digits. The defense started causing turnovers and a few shots found the net to energize the crowd.

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Senior Cole Matthews buried a 3-pointer with 4:27 left in the game to cut Philomath’s deficit to just three. But then a pivotal four-point swing occurred when the Warriors failed to capitalize on a high-percentage opportunity on one end and Banks scored seconds later on the other end after securing an offensive rebound.

Said PHS coach Blake Ecker, “Then the wheels fell off again and they hit some shots.”

That’s the way the evening went for the Warriors in what ended up as a 57-45 win for Banks.

PHS senior Isaac Lattin makes a pass inside around Banks defender Cooper Gobel. (Photo by Brad Fuqua/Philomath News)

“They shot the ball well but we let them … so then they had belief and confidence in that and all of a sudden, the hoop gets a lot bigger,” Ecker said.

The Banks game represented Philomath’s third contest over a five-day stretch and fatigue appeared to be a factor in this one.

“It’s exhausting, it’s a grind,” Ecker said. “Yesterday (Friday), our practice was about an hour — we just did some shooting and tried to have some fun with them a little bit. But it is tough to bring the energy that you need for three games in that amount of time plus practice.”

The Warriors will see multiple games in a short period of time if they make it to the state tournament. But Ecker said that’s a different mindset.

“It’s a little bit different with a tournament because you know the tournament is what it is,” he said. “You know that you’ve got these three games.”

Ecker could see his team’s lack of energy early on. The team wasn’t flying around in its typical fashion.

“We didn’t do what we’re supposed to be doing,” he said. “They’re a good team and they’re physical and they came down and did a nice job.”

Despite the flat start, Philomath did battle Banks close in the first half. The Braves started to build a bit of a cushion in the second quarter, although a Preston Kramer 3-pointer pulled the Warriors to within 20-19 at one point.

But Banks finished the half strong and took a 28-22 lead at the break.

In the third quarter, the Braves took control and took a double-digit lead. Banks had its biggest lead early in the fourth, 44-31.

Philomath then had a productive 10-0 run through the first half of the fourth quarter to get back to within three. That stretch got started with junior Cole Beardsley burying a 3-pointer with 6:21 left in the game.

Junior Chad Russell tries to find a teammate.(Photo by Brad Fuqua/Philomath News)

After junior Ty May came up with a steal, Matthews ended up with the ball and drew a foul. He hit both foul shots to bring Philomath’s deficit down to single digits at 46-38. Beardsley then had a steal as Philomath’s defensive pressure intensified and senior Carson Gerding scored two to make it 46-40.

With 4:45 remaining, sophomore Jacob Peters fought for possession to force a jump ball. The possession arrow belonged to Philomath and Matthews soon delivered on his 3-pointer to cut the Banks lead to 46-43.

But the visitors regained its composure and started hitting shots again. On the other end, Philomath’s attempts stop falling.

Beardsley finished with 17 points in a performance that included five 3-pointers. Matthews had 10 points with two of his three baskets coming from beyond the 3-point arc.

Junior Ben Mayo and senior Cooper Gobel each had 16 points for the Braves (15-5).

The Warriors (14-5) will get back into conference play on Tuesday with a senior night appearance against Sisters. Philomath will bring an Oregon West record of 8-1 into the game, which is scheduled for a 5:30 p.m. tip-off.


Banks 57, Philomath 45
Saturday, Feb. 12, at Philomath HS

JUNIOR VARSITY
Philomath 40, Banks 32
Saturday, Feb. 12, at Philomath HS

JUNIOR VARSITY 2
Banks 38, Philomath 35 (OT)
Saturday, Feb. 12, at Philomath HS