PASCO -- Taylor White injured her ribs over the weekend, and the Chiawana junior didn't figure she'd play much in Tuesday's CBBN 4A girls district semifinal game against Southridge.
Isn't that how the story of the really good career nights seemingly begin?
White almost matched her entire season scoring total, finishing with 17 points to lead the sixth-ranked Riverhawks to a 64-53 home win over the Suns.
"I've been waiting for a night where I could add something to the team," said White, who averaged 1.3 points in 13 games this season. "I practiced yesterday and I felt (the injury), but tonight it didn't affect my shot."
Coach Steve Davis knew she had a game like this in her. It was only a matter of when.
"Taylor's a kid who can shoot," Davis said. "It was just a matter of her getting out there and taking her shot, because once she starts shooting it, she's tough."
The win clinched a regional berth for Chiawana (20-2) and moves the Riverhwaks into Friday's district championship, where they will host Walla Walla for the school's first-ever team title.
Southridge (15-7), meanwhile, faces a winner-to-regional game Friday at home against Moses Lake. The Suns' only regional appearance came in 2000.
"We're exhausted right now," said Suns coach Scott Stiles. "I don't think these girls can work any harder on defense than they did tonight. If they work that hard Friday, they'll have a chance to win that game."
The Suns did a good job shutting down Chiawana's top two scorers, Hayley Hodgins (six shots) and Mikaela Rivard (five).
But they didn't account for White on their scouting report, other than to say, "Leave her open to focus on the other two."
"Obviously, it was her night tonight," Stiles said. "We played off her to help out in the post. We took our chances and left her open, and good players make open shots."
White bailed out the Riverhawks in the second quarter, scoring seven of their nine points to help them lead 23-21 at halftime.
She then erupted for 10 points in the fourth, including back-to-back 3-pointers that pushed the lead to 50-40 with 5 minutes to play.
"Coach Davis always tells me to step up and be a scorer," White said. "Tonight was the night I did."
She wasn't the only secondary player to come up big. Kendyl Reynolds, starting in place of an injured Sadie Sparks (thumb), had five assists, and Shelby Ellsworth had 10 points and eight rebounds.
"It's playoff time. Every team is going to key on your top players," Davis said. "Our role players have to step up and be big for us. We've had that happen so far, and hopefully it will continue to happen."
Heather Worley scored a game-high 19 points and grabbed 16 rebounds for Southridge.
La'Quilla Upton added 18 points while having primary defensive duties on Hodgins, who still finished with 15 points as she went 9-of-10 at the foul line in the fourth quarter.
Chiawana 64, Southridge 53
SOUTHRIDGE -- Heather Worley 19, J.Lyons 9, J.Wallace 4, Upton 18, Sorensen 3, Sanders, E.Wallace, Stein. Totals 20-51 8-18 53.
CHIAWANA -- Taylor White 17, Reynolds 3, Ellsworth 10, Valdez 7, Hodgins 15, Rivard 6, Kelly, Huisingh, Sparks 6. Totals 21-53 16-20 64.
Southridge 10 11 13 19 -- 53
Chiawana 14 9 16 25 -- 64
Highlights -- Sou 5x16 3pt, Chi 6x18; Sou 36 rbs, Chi 34; Sou 20 TOs, Chi 15; Worley 16 rbs, 4 asts; Paige Sorensen 5 rbs, 4 asts; Jenna Wallace 3 stls, 3 asts; Shelby Ellsworth 8 rbs; Kendyl Reynolds 5 rbs, 5 asts; Hayley Hodgins 5 stls; Mikaela Rivard 6 asts; Sadie Sparks 6 rbs, 3 asts.