COVE ROARS INTO 1A SEMIFINAL
BAKER CITY The Cove basketball boys remained true to form Thursday.
The boys had five players score eight or more points and three players with seven or more rebounds, and were forced to fend off a comeback attempt.
As they have been doing all season, the Cove boys held their ground, and romped in the second half in a 69-46 win over the Umpqua Valley Christian Monarchs in the 1A state tournament quarterfinals.
Cove (18-4 overall, No. 4 in the state) will play its semifinal at 8:15 p.m. today against North Clackamas Christian, which shocked No. 2-ranked McKenzie 71-68 Thursday.
Coach Todd Gorham said he is telling his kids to just go out and have fun tonight.
"Let's have some fun, anything can happen. We're playing as well as anyone right now," said Gorham.
When asked what the difference was against the Monarchs, Gorham said, "In one word, Andy Altenburg."
Altenburg, who came in to the tournament averaging 3.3 points a game, had his second great playoff game in a row, scoring 18 points on 8-for-12 shooting.
Devan Frank, coming back after missing a game due to a sprained ankle, scored 13 points, pulled down 16 boards and had three blocks and three assists.
Tom VanNice scored 17 points, with most of his points coming in the fourth quarter. He added seven rebounds. Josh Pfel and Chris Taylor scored eight points apiece, with Pfel adding seven boards and three assists.
That's a lot of damage coming from a lot of different directions. That's balance.
"That's the same thing that's been carrying us all year," said Gorham.
Gorham also said Cove followed the same pattern of getting off to a fast start, then withstood the inevitable comeback attempt.
The Leopards surged out ahead 16-5 as Pfel scored six of his points early. But, the Monarchs came all the way back and eventually tied the score at 21-21 midway through the second quarter. At this point, Frank picked up his third foul and had to go to the bench.
The rest of the team picked up the slack, however, as VanNice scored a pair of buckets as Cove went on a 10-1 run to end the first half.
Cove dominated much of the third quarter, at one point opening up a lead of 52-35. Altenburg scored seven points in the quarter while Frank scored eight.
Back came the Monarchs one more time. Casey Camp drilled two straight 3-pointers to bring Umpqua Valley Christian back to within 52-41 with still a lot of time four minutes left in the game.
That's when Cove's big 6-foot-4 post VanNice took over in the paint. Cove outscored the Monarchs 17-5 in the final four minutes with VanNice scoring nine points down the stretch.
Cove 69, Umpqua Valley Christian 46
Cove boys 18 13 15 23 69
Umpqua Valley Chr. 13 9 6 18 46
Cove Andy Altenburg 8-12 2-2 18; Tom VanNice 7-12 3-5 17; Devan Frank 6-12 0-0 13; Joshua Pfel 3-8 2-4 8; Chris Taylor 3-8 2-6 8; Jake Locken 1-1 0-0 3; Sean Louden 1-1 0-0 2; Tanner Marshall 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 29-55 9-17 69.
Umpqua Valley Christian Casey Camp 5-15 1-2 15; Jeremy Chappell 6-18 0-0 13; Jesse Masters 3-9 0-0 7; Cody Wittrock 1-7 3-4 5; Scott Goebel 1-5 1-4 4; Brian Ferguson 1-7 0-0 2; Tyler Robinson 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 17-63 5-10 46.
Three-point goals Cove 2-6 (Jake Locken 1-1; Devan Frank 1-1; Joshua Pfel 0-1; Chris Taylor 0-1; Andy Altenburg 0-2), UVC 7-27 (Casey Camp 4-7; Jeremy Chappell 1-9; Jesse Masters 1-3; Scott Goebel 1-1; Tyler Robinson 0-2; Brian Ferguson 0-5). Fouled out Cove, Devan Frank; UVC, Casey Camp. Rebounds Cove 43 (Devan Frank 16), UVC 35 (Casey Camp 9). Assists Cove 9 (Joshua Pfel 3; Devan Frank 3), UVC 5 (Brian Ferguson 3). Total fouls Cove 11, UVC 15.