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Fruitland defeats Baker

Grizzlies outgun Bulldogs for non-league win


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Kennan Richards and his Baker teammates suffered their first loss of the season Saturday at Fruitland, Idaho. (Baker City Herald file photo/Kathy Orr)
Baker was wishing the snowstorm that passed through the area Friday night had closed the freeway to Fruitland, Idaho, Saturday.

The Bulldogs suffered their first loss of the young season, 62-45, in the boys non-league basketball game in the Fruitland gym.

“Fruitland is a very aggressive team,” said Baker coach Craig Woods.

“They outhustled us at both ends of the floor. They hustled for every single loose ball in the first half, and we didn’t.”

That led to a 33-19 halftime deficit for the Bulldogs.


Bulldogs surge past Burns

Baker uses 14-0 second-half run to break game open

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B.J. Quintana goes up for a short jump shot over a Burns defender Thursday in Baker’s 67-56 win over the Hilanders.(BakerCityHerald/Kathy Orr)
Baker used a strong third quarter to break away from Burns Thursday on the way to a 67-56 win in a non-league boys basketball game at BHS.
Deadlocked at 27-27 at halftime, Baker (4-0) outscored the Hilanders 26-16 in the third period to build a 53-43 advantage.
The Bulldogs then scored the first eight points of the fourth quarter to complete a 14-0 run.
“This is just a good group of kids,” said Baker coach Craig Woods. “They’ll make mistakes, but they don’t get their heads down. And we’re not making the mistakes we were a couple of weeks ago.”
Dekker Smith came off the bench to score 10 of his 17 points in the third period. Derek Blankenship added eight of his team-high 18 in the quarter.
In fact, Baker’s posts scored 36 points in the game — Walker Kaseberg added 11 points, and Kennan Richards eight — most coming after assists from Blankenship and Jesse Brown.

Baker boys hold off Bucks

Baker makes 3 of 4 free throws late to thwart Pendleton’s rally

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Walker Kaseberg, No. 1, went up for a rebound over Pendleton’s Spencer Sundin and teammate Matt Gorrell Tuesday night. Kaseberg led Baker scoring with 19 points, including a breakaway dunk. (Baker City Herald/Kathy Orr)
Baker used an all-around team effort and kept its composure down the stretch to edge Pendleton 69-64 in a non-league boys basketball game at Baker High School.
“It was a great effort all the way around,” said Baker coach Craig Woods.
“Pendleton played us tough. But we made some shots and kept our composure. We rebounded well, and got a lot of second shot opportunities. It was fun.
“This kind of game isn’t going to win us a championship. It just gives us a better idea of what we’re capable of,” Woods said.
After leading the entire first half, Baker fell behind 48-47 with 2:16 left in the third period when Pendleton’s Devon Polhamus hit a fade away jumper from the left baseline.
Polhamus scored 11 of his 15 points in the third quarter to help the Bucks take a 57-54 lead at the break.
“Our posts were in foul trouble and weren’t going out to guard their big guys,” Woods said.

Baker girls earn moral victory in loss at Pendleton

It’s not often a coach is pleased after losing a game. But that’s exactly what Baker girls basketball coach Tim Smith was Tuesday evening in Pendleton.

Yes, his Bulldogs had just lost to Pendleton 50-47. It was the second time Baker had lost to the Lady Bucks this season. But, Smith said, the Bulldogs played a much better game this time around.

“We played a similar game to what we did a week ago in the first half,” Smith said. “We were kind of helter skelter.

“Then, we were a totally different team in the second half. We dominated at the defensive end of the floor.”


Baker grapplers shine at Enterprise

Bulldogs finish second in tournament


Baker wrestlers earned three individual firsts Friday on the way to a second-place team finish at the annual Enterprise Kickoff Wrestling Tournament.

Dillon Steele (130 pounds), Andrew Porter (135) and Ted Shaw (215) each garnered first place in his weight division.

Zack Valentine (103), Sam Pearson (140), Andrew Gettle (145), Anthony Constantine (152) and Jake Shukle (215) placed second.

Parker Warner (125) and Lane Gray (171) took third, and Keifer Mespelt (160) fourth.

“It was a good tournament for us,” said Baker coach Dee Gorrell.

“We came here to make a statement after winning this tournament last year. The kids, even though we’re young, did a really good job.

“I was impressed with their wrestling. Some of the kids got their first introduction to high school wrestling,” Gorrell said.

Baker finished with 209 points. Mac-Hi won the tournament with 263.

Baker travels to La Grande Friday and Saturday for the annual Muilenberg Tournament.


Bulldogs slip past Wolverines

Blankenship leads Baker with 18 points


Baker jumped to a quick lead, then held off a Weiser rally in the second half to post a 48-44 victory over the Wolverines Saturday in a non-league boys basketball game.

After a 6-6 deadlock in the first quarter, Baker went ahead 20-12 at halftime.

“We kind of jumped out on them,” said Baker coach Craig Woods. “We were running the floor well.”

The Bulldogs held Weiser to no field goals in the second period, allowing just six free throws.

“We played pretty well defensively,” Woods said. “We just have to be more consistent. And, we still have to find our outside shooting game.”


Defense leads Baker girls to win over Kuna

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Baker’s Whitney Phillips goes up for a rebound over a Kuna defender Saturday in the Bulldogs’ 38-25 non-league victory. (Baker City Herald/Kathy Orr)
An old saying in most team sports is “the best offense is a tough defense.” Baker proved that Saturday in a non-league girls basketball game against Kuna, Idaho, in the Baker gym.

The Bulldogs’ offense struggled in the first half, but their defense prevented Kuna from taking advantage. Baker then broke the game open in the fourth quarter on the way to a 38-25 win.

“I thought our defense kept us in the game when our offense struggled a little in the first half,” said Baker coach Tim Smith.

“We led at halftime, built on it in the third quarter, then kind of let them back into it.”


Pendleton rolls past Baker girls

Sloppy ball handling hurts Bulldogs


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Baker’s Dallas Defrees goes up for two points over the defense of Pendleton’s Kristen VanCleave during Tuesday’s non-league girls basketball game at Baker High School. (Baker City Herald/Kathy Orr)
Baker girls basketball coach Tim Smith wants his Bulldogs to get up and down the floor quickly this season. But the Bulldogs have to take care of the ball.

Baker didn’t do that very well against Pendleton Tuesday in the Baker gym. The result was a 65-47 Pendleton win.

“We want to get up and down the floor, but tonight we were just a little bit above our comfortable pace,” Smith said. “We were a little bit on the reckless side.”

That recklessness allowed Pendleton to build a 22-10 lead after quarter. Many of the Bucks’ points came as the result of Baker turnovers. Guard Sam McCloud tallied 12 points in the first quarter, and post Kristen VanCleave added eight. Both players finished the game with 22 points.

“We have to focus on being more patient on offense, and more patient rebounding,” Smith said.


Talbott on 4A all-state second team

Baker senior Tara Talbott was named to the The Oregonian Class 4A all-state volleyball second team last week by a vote of the state’s coaches.

Talbott, the Greater Oregon League player of the year, led the Bulldogs to the Class 4A state playoffs and a second-place GOL finish this past season.

Talbott also is a member of Baker’s softball and girls basketball teams, and was crowned homecoming queen in October during the Bulldogs’ football season.


Joseph meets Imbler for 1A title

Grant Union vying for 3A crown


HILLSBORO — It will be an all-Old Oregon League matchup Saturday when Joseph and Imbler meet for the Class 1A state football championship.

Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. at Hillsboro Stadium. Spectator admission is $8 for adults and $5 for students.

Joseph (11-1) enters the title game coming off a 54-48 upset of previously undefeated Perrydale last week in the semifinals. In that game, Joseph’s Grant Marcum, formerly of Baker, ran for 165 yards and four touchdowns. He was named Qwest player of the game for his efforts.

Imbler (10-1) advanced to the title game by defeating Dufur in its semifinal matchup.


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