PASCO -- Chiawana coach Chad Herron wasn't doing his blood pressure any favors Friday night in Pasco after watching his team miss 15 of its first 16 shots of the second quarter as Richland built a four-point lead.
Herron cringed at missed shots and growled with every Bombers rebound as he angrily stalked in front of his team's bench.
The second half, however, was medicine.
The Riverhawks hit 9 of 14 shots in the third quarter to take the lead for the first time and held on for a clutch 66-56 CBBN 4A win over Richland.
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Zach Mendoza and Jordan Downing combined for 19 of Chiawana's 24 points in the frame -- connecting on 7 of 9 shots from the field -- as the Riverhawks took over the game.
"I couldn't be happier with the way the guys played together," Herron said. "Defensively, we played better as a team than we've played all year."
Tyrell Turner got hot early for Richland, scoring 12 of the Bombers' 14 first-quarter points. Payton Radliff found Turner for an open 3 in the left corner, and he made it to open up an 11-7 lead with 2:34 left in the first. Two minutes later, he scored in transition and got fouled by Brandon Mendoza, converting the three-point play for a 14-9 lead.
Turner finished with 22 points, but Chiawana slowed him down a bit, forcing Richland to find another go-to player over the final three quarters.
"I thought our guys played hard. We just weren't very focused on offense," Bombers coach Earl Streufert said. "Guys were trying to step up. We just couldn't find a rhythm."
Meanwhile, the Riverhawks found theirs. Trailing 25-24 at halftime, Chiawana came out firing in the second half.
After Richland missed its first four shots of the second quarter, Downing scored Chiawana's first five points of the frame. After making the score 27-27 with a free throw, he took a pass from Zach Mendoza and hit a pull-up jumper in the lane to give the Riverhawks their first lead of the game.
Chiawana never trailed from that point on.
Less than a minute later, Downing returned the favor, dishing off to Mendoza for a 3-pointer on the left wing to make it 32-27.
"That's always been my role. I get double-teamed a lot, so when that happens, my job is to find the open guy," said Downing, who finished with 22 points and added five assists. "I'd rather be unselfish than shoot the ball."
Mendoza and Josue Torres then hit back-to-back treys to push the lead to 38-29. Mendoza had eight points in the third quarter and seven more in the fourth to finish with 20, a season high.
"At halftime, we said we needed to slow down. We really came together as a team," said Mendoza, who transferred from Pasco with his brother Brandon before the season began.
"It was huge. (Zach) hitting those jump shots consistently makes us very tough," said Herron, who also gave Downing props for his unselfish play inside. "Jordan is so skilled down low. Since his freshman year, his passing has improved more than any player I've ever had."
Downing waged an impressive battle with Richland post Nathan Streufert in the second half. Streufert, a sophomore, made himself an option down the stretch, scoring eight points in the fourth quarter.
"That was exciting. Jordan is a great player. I like going up against him," said Streufert, who outscored the entire Riverhawks team 8-7 during a 4-minute stretch of the final 8 minutes. "I was trying to use my height."
In the end, it was Zach Mendoza putting the finishing touches on the win, scoring Chiawana's final seven points. Zamora drove the lane, attacking the basket before dishing back to Mendoza for an easy 2. Mendoza then hit 5 of 6 free throws to ice the win.
RICHLAND -- Tyrell Turner 22, Baker 10, Radliff 4, Streufert 10, Quick 6, Fuller 2, Malone 2, Wheeler, Hilty. Totals 23-60 7-16 56.
CHIAWANA -- Zach Mendoza 20, Perez 7, Zamora 7, Jordan Downing 22, Babinchuk 4, Torres 3, B.Mendoza, Briones 3. Totals 23-57 15-24 66.
Richland 14 11 12 19 -- 56
Chiawana 11 13 24 18 -- 66
Highlights -- Rebounds: R 32 (Colter Quick 8), C 50 (Miquiyah Zamora 12); 3-pointers: R 3x16 (Adam Baker 2), C 5x20 (Z.Mendoza 2); Turnovers: R 13, C 19; Assists: R 6 (Nathan Streufert 3), C 13 (Downing 5); Steals: R 9 (Turner 5), C 11 (Enrique Perez 5).