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Harvest Academy splits pair

Baker City’s Harvest Christian Academy basketball teams had mixed results last Friday when they played host to the Calvary Crusaders.

The boys won 54-36.

The girls team lost 27-13.

In the boys game, Braden Phillips led the Knights with 14 points. Alex Turner added 12, Thomas Svitak 10, Jeff Hurst 9, Will Godes 4, Jaden Turner 3 and Josh Hurst 2.

Bulldogs roll past Weiser

Baker girls run winning streak to six games with victory over Wolverines

Baker’s Savannah Daly is surrounded by two Weiser defenders while attempting a shot during the Bulldogs’ 51-37 non-league win Tuesday at BHS. Daly finished with 12 points. (Baker City Herald/Kathy Orr)
Baker just keeps on keeping on.

The Bulldogs have won six games in a row, and eight of their last nine. The most recent victory came Tuesday, a 51-37 win over Weiser, Idaho, in the BHS gym.

“This was a good win; a nice warmup for Mac-Hi Saturday,” said Baker coach Tim Smith.

Seniors Dallas Defrees, Savannah Daly and Kristen Hoopes led the Bulldogs against Weiser. Defrees led Baker with 14 points. Daly added 12 points, including a pair of three-point baskets in the first quarter. Hoopes came off the bench to tally five points in relief of Tara Talbott.

Baker girls top Ontario in GOL opener

Mackenzie Warner leads Bulldogs to first win at Ontario since 2000

Baker made history Friday during its Greater Oregon League girls basketball game at Ontario.

The Bulldogs earned a 53-31 victory over the Tigers to open the GOL season. The win was Baker’s first at Ontario in nine years.

“This was my first win here as coach,” said Baker coach Tim Smith. “And, it was our first win at Ontario since 2000 when Courtney Warner, Mackenzie’s older sister, was point guard for the Bulldogs.

“This is only the second time — the other was in 2003 — that a team I’ve coached has defeated Ontario,” Smith said.

Friday, Baker left little doubt as to the outcome.

Baker girls bury Grant Union

The Baker girls basketball team made it five wins in six games Saturday, defeating Grant Union 60-45 at John Day. The Bulldogs’ lone loss during that stretch was by one point to Burns.

“The girls came out focused. I’m real pleased with the way we’ve been playing during this stretch,” said Baker coach Tim Smith.

“The girls came out and played pretty steady for three quarters. I thought we executed pretty well, but didn’t play as sharp as we did Friday at Ontario,” he said.

Baker held Grant Union to single-digit scoring in each of the first three quarters.

“We had too many turnovers in the fourth quarter. We talked about finishing better,” Smith said.

Third time the charm for Baker

Baker rallies in second half to defeat Fruitland for the first time in three meetings

The third time was the charm for Baker against Fruitland in non-league boys basketball action Saturday.

The Bulldogs, losers in two earlier meetings with Fruitland this season, came from behind in the final three minutes to edge the Grizzlies 57-48. Baker outscored Fruitland 11-2 in the final 3:12.

Baker coach Craig Woods said a defensive switch from the previous meetings helped the Bulldogs stay close the entire game Saturday.

“We played zone almost the entire game,” he said. “We started figuring out what they were doing and the zone helped shut some of it down.

“We talked about not giving up on a play,” Woods said. “In the first half we did give up on a few plays and they took advantage of it.

Blankenship leads Baker past Tigers

Junior guard tallies 25 points in Greater Oregon League boys win

Baker’s Zach Thatcher battles Fruitland’s Jacob Crim for a rebound during Saturday’s non-league boys basketball game at BHS. (Baker City Herald/Kathy Orr)
Baker opened the Greater Oregon League boys basketball season Friday by edging Ontario 59-56 at Ontario.

The Bulldogs (1-0 in the GOL) forged a 13-point lead late in the third quarter then had to hold on for the win.

“Ontario is a very aggressive team,” said Baker coach Craig Woods. “They try to get you to lose your composure.

“We built that 47-34 lead in the third quarter. Then we just kind of cruised. We just can’t do that. We have to play to put people away.”

One area Woods was pleased with was Baker’s free throw shooting. The Bulldogs entered the game shooting about 52 percent from the line. Against Ontario, the Bulldogs were 13-for-13 from the line in the first three quarters. Baker then was 8-of-13 from the line in the fourth quarter to finish the game 21-of-26.

Bulldog grapplers win Jo-Hi title

Maybe the Baker wrestling squad should skip practices more often. At least that strategy worked for the Bulldogs at the annual Jo-Hi tournament at Joseph High School Friday and Saturday.

The Bulldogs did not practice during the holiday break, then went out and won the Jo-Hi meet, edging Pomeroy, Wash., 166.5-146.5.

“I caught some flak for the decision not to practice,” said Baker coach Dee Gorrell. “But, now we’re all healed, all healthy and ready to go.”

The Bulldogs, who were second to Pomeroy after Friday’s action, finished with 13 wrestlers placing in their weight divisions to gain the title.

“I’m really proud of the kids,” Gorrell said. “Monday they made a goal that we would be first in the tournament. They battled the whole tournament and the kids spoke for themselves. We pulled it out in the championship round.”

Defense leads Baker girls to win

Baker braved icy roads to reach Emmett, Idaho, Tuesday afternoon, and it paid off in a 49-33 win in the non-league girls basketball game.

“It probably took us about 20 minutes more than usual to get to Emmett,” said Baker coach Tim Smith.

But once there, Baker’s defense was red hot.

“The girls played darn good defense throughout the game,” Smith said.

Despite the defensive effort Baker led just 32-31 after three quarters. Then the Bulldogs tightened the screws another step, limiting Emmett to just two fourth-quarter points.

Hilanders rally to nip Baker girls

Burns’ Mattea Zabala goes up for a shot over the defense of Baker’s Dallas Defrees during Saturday’s girls game at Baker. (Baker City Herald/Kathy Orr)
Baker girls basketball coach Tim Smith is not fond of moral victories, but he was happy nonetheless Saturday.

Burns senior Courtney Toney scored on a short jump shot from the left baseline as the horn sounded Saturday to lift the Hilanders to a 39-38 victory over Baker in the non-league game at BHS.

Baker played a much stronger game than during an earlier 56-29 loss at Burns. In that game Toney and Mattea Zabala combined for 26 points. This time that duo tallied 16.

“We put a stop on them for the most part,” Smith said.

“Our defensive pressure tonight was as good as we can play.”

Baker trailed 34-29 with 1:04 left in the game, then kicked up the defensive pressure.

Defrees, Warner lead Baker by Kuna

Baker hadn’t played since before Christmas, so Coach Tim Smith was pleased when the Bulldogs defeated Kuna 44-32 Friday in a non-league girls basketball game at Kuna, Idaho.

“I thought the girls played well, particularly coming off the long break,” Smith said.

“We executed pretty well, and played great defense. And, we got some things to fall when we needed them to.”

Dallas Defrees and Mackenzie Warner each scored 11 points to lead the Bulldogs. Defrees added nine rebounds and six steals.

“Dallas had a great all-around game. She was all over the place,” Smith said.

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