PASCO — The last time Hayley Hodgins had gone scoreless in a basketball game before Saturday night was … well … never.
Walla Walla blanked the Chiawana junior in ending the Riverhawks’ 11-game win streak, and she was determined not to have a repeat performance in Tuesday night’s regular-season finale against Richland.
“You can’t score if you don’t shoot it,” Hodgins said after scoring a game-high 16 points in a 44-38 CBBN Cascade win in Pasco. “It’s not all about me scoring, but I need to do my job, and that’s being a shooter.”
The third-ranked Riverhawks (18-2, 13-1) already had wrapped up the division title, while the Bombers (14-6, 10-4) fell to the No. 3 district seed.
Chiawana opens district play against crosstown rival Pasco at 7 p.m. Saturday, while Richland travels to Southridge.Hodgins came out more aggressive from the get-go, hitting a free-throw jumper just 46 seconds into the game. She finished 5-of-12 from the field.
“Walla Walla went at her like Richland did tonight, just harassing her all over the court,” said Chiawana coach Steve Davis. “The difference is down there, her teammates didn’t do a good job of getting her open. Tonight they did, and she looked to be a shooter.”
The Bombers had two objectives coming into Tuesday’s game. The first was to get the division’s No. 2 seed, but Walla Walla’s win over West Valley combined with the loss denied them that prize.
The second was to acquit themselves better than they did in the teams’ first matchup — a 53-36 Riverhawks rout.
On that count, the Bombers fared much better. They shored up their interior defense, holding Chiawana’s three posts to 17 points (half their total from the first game), and went toe-to-toe with the Riverhawks on the boards (only a 31-30 Chiawana advantage).
“The biggest thing we were playing for tonight was pride,” said Bombers coach Kristen Davis. “I think the girls were embarrassed with their performance the first time they played.
“They’re showing their maturity as a group, because they came in with a little more confidence tonight. I hope they keep that confidence going into the playoffs.”
The Riverhawks trailed by six early in the second quarter but regained the lead for good at 20-18 on Erin Huisingh’s 3-pointer with 2:30 left in the first half.
They never trailed in the second half and led by as many as nine with 5:05 left, but the Bombers never let them feel comfortable.
“I think people have started to figure us out,” Steve Davis said. “They have some great game plans for us, and we’ve struggled being able to make changes on the court.”
Megan Sax led Richland with 11 points and nine rebounds.
Mikaela Rivard added 10 points for Chiawana.
RICHLAND — Megan Sax 11, Machinal 7, Caldwell 2, Ojeda 3, Mahoney 7, Croskrey, Von Oelhoffen 8. Totals 10-38 17-25 38.
CHIAWANA — Hayley Hodgins 16, Sparks, Ellsworth 7, Valdez 1, Rivard 10, Reynolds 4, Kelly, Huisingh 3, White 3. Totals 16-47 9-16 44.
Richland 11 8 9 10 — 38
Chiawana 8 16 9 11 — 44
Highlights — Ric 1x10 3pt, Chi 3x9; Ric 30 rbs, Chi 31; Ric 17 TOs, Chi 11; Sax 9 rbs; Hodgins 8 rbs; Shelby Ellsworth 8 rbs, 4 asts, 3 stls; Melanie Valdez 4 asts, 4 stls.