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La Grande’s Denise Comfort finished with 17 points in the Lady Tigers’ 60-22 victory over Baker Friday. CASEY KELLAS/The Observer
By Casey Kellas / The Observer
The La Grande girls basketball team continued its dominance of the Greater Oregon League Friday, defeating rival Baker 60-22 to improve to 5-0 in the GOL.
“It was great team and individual defense tonight,” LHS head coach Doug Girdner said. “That’s the stuff we’ve been working on. We wanted to be aggressive and smart on defense.”
The Lady Tigers used a tight press and physical man-to-man defense in the first quarter to jump out to a 12-1 lead. LHS stretched the lead to 17-1 in the second quarter before Baker finally hit its first field goal – a 3-pointer by Michelle Birkmaier with 5:35 left in the half.
La Grande took a 26-9 lead to the locker room at halftime.
“We talked about what we wanted to do,” Girdner said, “which is be aggressive, rebound and make our free throws.”
La Grande started the third quarter on a 9-0 run to extend its lead to 35-9. The Lady Tigers outscored Baker 21-2 in the third to lead 47-11.
Girdner turned to his bench in the fourth quarter and the Bulldogs never challenged, as La Grande held on for the comfortable victory.
Breanna Partney finished with a game-high 17 points, while Denise Comfort added 15 and Lauren Mills chipped in 13. Madison Elliott had three, Auslin McDaniel-Perrin finished with two and Lilly Page scored one point.
“The good thing about our team is we have a lot of weapons. And against McLoughlin I was able to get my bench players a lot of playing time, and it built confidence.”
Which is big because the bench is key. They need to be solid,” Girdner said.
LHS is 15-3 overall and remains ranked No. 3 in the OSAA poll. Baker falls to 2-11 and 1-4, while Ontario is 11-8 overall and 4-1 in the GOL after defeating McLoughlin (3-13, 0-5) 64-16 Friday.
La Grande will play host to Ontario Friday at 6 p.m. Girdner said he wants a white out and encourages fans to wear white to the game.