Hawks rock best of Big Sky

36-point rout means Horizon is the only undefeated BSC team

What was billed as a Big Sky Conference, West Division showdown never materialized Tuesday in Maupin, as second-ranked Horizon Christian School strong-armed South Wasco County, 78-42, in boys basketball.

Both teams entered the game unbeaten in league play, but Horizon’s defensive pressure, inside game and interior passing were the big reasons South Wasco is no longer tied for first place. The Redsides are known more as a deliberate offensive team under coach Jim Hull, but he has them playing a more up-tempo style this year. Their 42 points Tuesday were a season low and 20 points below their season average.

Horizon’s defensive pressure was fueled by guards Ryan Aldrich and Micah Engel, who set the tone of the game from the outset. Engel had a brief appearance, playing just seven minutes of the first half before sitting out the remainder of the contest so he could ice his sore left ankle. Aldrich stayed in the fray longer. Part of his duty included clamping down on South Wasco’s leading scorer this season, David Ocacio, limiting him to 12 points (on 4-for-18 shooting). Only two of those points (a pair of free throws) came during the third of the game when Aldrich was matched up with Ocacio man-to-man. Ocacio was coming off a 37-point performance against Sherman.

“Micah was injured with a sprained ankle,” Horizon coach Darrin Lingel said. “He came out and was just focused on aggressive defense. He and Ryan both just absolutely took it to them. It took them out of their game — that high-intensity defense. They hurried everything, and when they did get a shot, it was a quick shot.

“Micah and Ryan both get us into our style of basketball.”

At the other end of the court, Horizon’s starting interior players — Matt Totaro, Jake Wells and Mason Bloomster — accounted for 59 of the team’s 78 points. Totaro (23 points), Bloomster (20) and Wells (16) combined on 27 of 43 shooting, and also accounted for 32 of their team’s 47 rebounds.

“Jake, Mason and Matt did a great job down low,” Lingel said. “Our emphasis going into the game was to get the ball in low. To get the ball to Jake. And get it to the high post and then down to the low post.”

Horizon’s passing game led to 20 assisted baskets, something the Hawks have done well of late. Totaro led the way with five assists.

“I thought our interior passing was very good overall,” Lingel said. “We took advantage of our strength against this team, which was our height … We passed the ball well.”

Both teams were cool on offense early. Horizon led 8-0 before Ocacio scored South Wasco’s first basket with 2:53 left in the first quarter. An 11-0 run to end the period pushed the Horizon margin to 17 points at 19-2. South Wasco did cut into the Hawk advantage with a mini run of its own late in the second quarter, but a 6-0 Horizon burst gave the Hawks a 38-17 halftime lead. South Wasco could not get closer the rest of the way.


The Horizon girls (4-11overall, 1-4 Big Sky Conference) lost 58-24 to South Wasco. Marlee Bloomster was one of the bright spots for the Hawks. The freshman wing scored 11 points on 4-for-6 shooting from the field, pulled down 15 rebounds, had four blocks and six steals.

South Wasco’s full-court pressure fueled a 16-0 Redsides start and had Horizon on its heels the rest of the game. Horizon enjoyed a 42-24 rebound advantage for the game, including 16 offensive boards. But the Hawks struggled with turnovers (39) and poor shooting (23 percent) against the Redsides, who remain in third place in the Big Sky West.

Horizon was scheduled to play Friday night at Condon-Wheeler in Fossil, before returning home for a Saturday afternoon matchup against Nixyaawii.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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